What is a Distributed Antenna System (DAS)?
A Distributed Antenna System can be the perfect solution for providing strong and reliable radio coverage and wireless connectivity in certain situations. A DAS is a network of antennas evenly distributed over a certain area, all connected by a common source. This is an alternative option to a single antenna which has a smaller area of coverage, a weaker signal and consumes more power.
DAS has been around for many years. However, it is the result of increased demand for wireless systems within buildings, remote areas and across difficult coverage areas that has spiked the demand for this technology.
There are also two types of DAS; Outdoors Distributed Antenna System (oDAS) and In-building Distributed Antenna System. iDAS can be useful for increasing wireless signal across large areas by being placed atop of high poles and buildings such as streetlights and utility poles. iDAS on the other hand can boost wireless coverage inside larger structures such as stadiums of office headquarters.
Advantages and disadvantages of a Distributed Antenna System (DAS)
The DAS is becoming increasingly popular as a result of its numerous advantages and applications. Whilst the Distributed Antenna Systems installation are more costly and complicated, their advantages often outweigh their disadvantages.
Advantages of DAS
- Increased signal coverage over a defined area
- Multiple antennas use less power all together than a singular antenna
- Fewer coverage holes
- Can be used in situations where other telecommunication technologies would not be suitable
- DAS do not need to be placed as high up as a single antenna to provide the same coverage
- DAS overcomes the penetration and shadowing losses because a sight link is more available. This results in a reduced delay speed and a reduction in fade depths.
Disadvantages of DAS
- Higher cost compared to a single antenna due to additional infrastructure
- Although the antennas can be placed lower down, the increased number of antennas can result in a greater visual impact
Distributed Antenna System Wifi
One of the less common uses for DAS is its ability to provide Wifi. Whilst it is usually internet service providers that supply a large building with Wifi, this can also be done with the use of a Distributed Antenna System.