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Thread: Do gas-filled windows block wireless signal?

  1. #1
    Don Phillipson
    Guest

    Do gas-filled windows block wireless signal?

    Wireless broadband was always marginal here (at least one
    mile from the tower, with trees in the line of sight ) and became
    impossible the day the windows were replaced with modern
    "Energy Star" units, double-pane sealed units filled with gas
    (either argon or krypton, I forget which.) I could not be sure of
    the cause, but managed to reach an ISP engineer. One of his
    suggestions was to try the directional wireless modem at an open
    window, i.e. no glass -- which immediately provided a satisfactory
    signal. I have instructions for various tests thus will quantify the
    difference if I can.

    The engineer said he had never heard of either window structure
    (aluminum here with steel magnets that hold the fly screens in place)
    or gas-filled sealed panes obstructing wireless signals. Has anyone else?

    --
    Don Phillipson
    Carlsbad Springs
    (Ottawa, Canada)



  2. #2
    George
    Guest

    Re: Do gas-filled windows block wireless signal?

    On 6/28/2010 5:11 PM, Don Phillipson wrote:
    > Wireless broadband was always marginal here (at least one
    > mile from the tower, with trees in the line of sight ) and became
    > impossible the day the windows were replaced with modern
    > "Energy Star" units, double-pane sealed units filled with gas
    > (either argon or krypton, I forget which.) I could not be sure of
    > the cause, but managed to reach an ISP engineer. One of his
    > suggestions was to try the directional wireless modem at an open
    > window, i.e. no glass -- which immediately provided a satisfactory
    > signal. I have instructions for various tests thus will quantify the
    > difference if I can.
    >
    > The engineer said he had never heard of either window structure
    > (aluminum here with steel magnets that hold the fly screens in place)
    > or gas-filled sealed panes obstructing wireless signals. Has anyone else?
    >


    If the windows were touted as "low e" you found your problem. Various
    metal oxide coatings are either in the glass or coating the glass to
    lower the emissivity. Metal is also great for shielding RF.

  3. #3
    DanS
    Guest

    Re: Do gas-filled windows block wireless signal?

    "Don Phillipson" <e925@SPAMBLOCK.ncf.ca> wrote in
    news:i0b3ar$gpq$1@speranza.aioe.org:

    > Wireless broadband was always marginal here (at least one
    > mile from the tower, with trees in the line of sight ) and
    > became impossible the day the windows were replaced with
    > modern "Energy Star" units, double-pane sealed units filled
    > with gas (either argon or krypton, I forget which.) I
    > could not be sure of the cause, but managed to reach an ISP
    > engineer. One of his suggestions was to try the
    > directional wireless modem at an open window, i.e. no glass
    > -- which immediately provided a satisfactory signal. I
    > have instructions for various tests thus will quantify the
    > difference if I can.
    >
    > The engineer said he had never heard of either window
    > structure (aluminum here with steel magnets that hold the
    > fly screens in place) or gas-filled sealed panes
    > obstructing wireless signals. Has anyone else?
    >


    Yes, that is what I told you the other day.

    The engineer needs to get up to speed.



  4. #4
    Jeff Liebermann
    Guest

    Re: Do gas-filled windows block wireless signal?

    On Mon, 28 Jun 2010 17:11:23 -0400, "Don Phillipson"
    <e925@SPAMBLOCK.ncf.ca> wrote:

    >The engineer said he had never heard of either window structure
    >(aluminum here with steel magnets that hold the fly screens in place)
    >or gas-filled sealed panes obstructing wireless signals. Has anyone else?


    The glass probably has a low-emissivity TiN (Titanium Nitride)
    coating. That's about 35 ohms per square sheet resistance, which is
    as good as a dead short at RF frequencies.
    <http://802.11junk.com/jeffl/crud/Low-E-titanium-nitide-glass.pdf>
    (422 KBytes) Although the tests did not extend to RF frequencies, a
    look at Fig 4 shows that TiN transmission is totally blocked (<5%) at
    wavelengths longer than 3000nm.

    Is the fly screen made of aluminum or fiberglass?

    You might try the same test (open/closed window) with a cell phone.
    You'll probably see the same drop in signal level.

    --
    Jeff Liebermann jeffl@cruzio.com
    150 Felker St #D http://www.LearnByDestroying.com
    Santa Cruz CA 95060 http://802.11junk.com
    Skype: JeffLiebermann AE6KS 831-336-2558

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