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Minimising the effects of bad weather

Posted: Mon May 16, 2011 9:51 am
by MarkSnell
I would like some advice on getting best possible reception in a regional area during bad weather.

I often visit friends near Healesville, Vic, and have set up an external Exetel yagi aerial with line of sight to the Woori Yallock tower about 8km away, but usually get a stronger signal from the Emerald tower about 25km away in the same direction.

In fine weather, I can rely on speeds of around 512kbps and sometimes over 1500.

However, during the rain and frequent bad weather in the area, as experienced over the last few days, the signal drops to almost nothing and often switches from HSPA to GPRS. Over the last few days, speeds were seldom more than 20kbps, often less than 10 and frequently there was no connection at all. A dial-up connection would have been faster and less frustrating.

I have read scientific papers that say that rain and moisture in the air do not have a significant effect on signal strength with radio frequencies of 900 and 2100MHz.

So, if this is true, I am wondering what is actually causing the signal loss, and what I can do about it. Other people in the area experience the same signal loss. Is it because water on the aerial (at either end) is short-circuiting the terminals or changing impedance? Or are there other factors?

It has been suggested to me that satellite these days deals better with bad weather than wireless broadband. Is this correct?

Can anyone help?


All the best

Mark

Re: Minimising the effects of bad weather

Posted: Mon May 16, 2011 11:22 am
by Dazzled
I'm another New South Welshman, but isn't that area of Victoria forested? Radio needs a wider line of sight than vision, and lots of wet leaves along the route, rather than rain in the air, may be at work. There are a couple of radio gurus that sometimes post here, and one of them might have the story.

Re: Minimising the effects of bad weather

Posted: Mon May 16, 2011 11:29 am
by shoner
MarkSnell wrote: So, if this is true, I am wondering what is actually causing the signal loss, and what I can do about it. Other people in the area experience the same signal loss. Is it because water on the aerial (at either end) is short-circuiting the terminals or changing impedance? Or are there other factors?
Extreme bad weather can have an effect (heavy thunder storms). Your yagii should have a clear line of site, as Dazzled said a lot of tree, leaves could be the issue rather than bad weather.