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Communications Network Science

No Wi-Fi Around Huge Radio Telescope 224

JG0LD writes "Students at a tiny Appalachian public school can't use Wi-Fi because any such network can throw the radio equivalent of a monkey wrench into a gigantic super-sensitive radio telescope just up the road. GBT's extraordinary sensitivity means that it's very susceptible to human-generated radio interference, according to site interference protection engineer Carla Beaudet. 'If there was no dirt between us and the transmitter, a typical access point ... would have to be on the order of 1,000,000 km [more than 620,000 miles, or about two and a half times the distance from the Earth to the Moon] distant to not interfere. Fortunately, we have mountains around us which provide lots of attenuation, so we're not seeing everything from everywhere,' she said. A standard Wi-Fi access point would wipe out a significant range of usable frequencies for the observatory. 'It simply ruins the spectrum for observations from 2400-2483.5MHz and from 5725-5875MHz for observational purposes,' wrote Beaudet."
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No Wi-Fi Around Huge Radio Telescope

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  • Re:Boo Hoo (Score:4, Funny)

    by icebike ( 68054 ) on Friday February 08, 2013 @08:55PM (#42839605)

    So some kids can't get Wi Fi. A vast majority of people around the world grew up without WiFi and of those most who went to school did so without WiFi.

    [best Walter Brennan voice]
    Yup sonny, I can remember back in the day having to use Wires!! Wires for pete sake. Imagine that!
    Went by the name of CatFive, for some crazy reason. You had to plug them into the wall.
    If you lost your wire you couldn't do anything. Had 8 wires in them, but only used 4 of them.
    Durndest thing you ever did see.

Honesty pays, but it doesn't seem to pay enough to suit some people. -- F.M. Hubbard