Author Topic: Can you get good (reliable) range from mc modules?  (Read 197 times)


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Can you get good (reliable) range from mc modules?
« on: February 19, 2017, 09:11:55 pm »

What sort of range are people getting from mc modules mc-Air in non ideal environments?  I have one mod 120 module that does not do more than 4m in the office.  I have seen one do 70m outdoors with perfect line of sight.  When testing outdoors it seemed to be dependent on the orientation of the antenna at over 20m range!  It also seems to be dependent on what is near the antenna, ie modules, battery etc.

In any useful application the module will be in an enclosure with another PCB and a battery and it will almost certainly never be clear line of sight and most likely there will be other RF energy and interference about...

What is the likely hood these things can achieve 100m reliable range when in an enclosure with another PCB and battery and in a rural environment where there may be trees and other objects that block clear line of sight?



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Re: Can you get good (reliable) range from mc modules?
« Reply #1 on: February 20, 2017, 01:55:40 pm »
I had this issue with one of my modules that did not have a battery clip.  During my soldering process to add the clip, I somehow managed to tap the area where the pcb antenna meets the resistor and de-soldered the connection.  This may not be your issue, but it's worth checking that area of your module for issues.


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Re: Can you get good (reliable) range from mc modules?
« Reply #2 on: February 21, 2017, 05:02:00 pm »
It is very different per situation. We always test with line of sight and we get more than 100m but that is in Alberta where the humidity is very low. A lot of stuff has effect on the range like walls, antenna, stuff close by, etc. The link budget for devices with the Nrf52 is about 100dBm (-96 sensitivity and +4 output power). We have a number customer that uses the mcMod120 for outdoor asset tracking to see if the asset is in a restricted place. It is beacon based so more information is received and it requires only one way communication.
Our new gateway has +20dBm output power. This does not solve everything because the devices are still sending at +4dBm but the gateway also has two antenna's for better antenna diversity.
Our new mcMod120LR also sends at +20dBm and has been tested up to 1KM line of sight. In practice it will not reach that but it will operate much better in a ware-houses and other restricted indoor environment. All software is 100% compatible between the devices. It will be powered by 2 AA batteries.

Engineering samples will be available within a few weeks

« Last Edit: February 21, 2017, 05:34:41 pm by mc-John »