Wide Band vs Narrow Band in the Construction Industry

Nov 10, 2021

In computing and wireless electronics, “bandwidth” refers to the maximum amount of data that can be transferred from one point to another across a given signal path, meaning that a wide bandwidth can hold more data at a given time than a narrow bandwidth. Nowadays, we tend to hear references to wide band technology more often than narrow band, due to the saturated digital world we inhabit today where the sheer amount of data transfer is a hot commodity!

Bandwidth is limited at ALL frequencies, even for our beloved wide band. We love the data capacity demonstrated by our ability to stream our favourite Netflix shows at a moment’s notice, but when it comes to the construction industry, does this same principal apply? Can wide band technology provide the same level of efficiency and performance for operators of mobile construction and utility vehicles?

 

The Narrower – The Better

 

In the development of industrial remote controls, narrow band is usually the bandwidth of choice. There are presently two frequencies that are typically used for remote control of equipment. These are the 902-928 MHz frequency and the second (and the most widely used) being the 2.4-2.483 GHz frequency. In both frequencies, there is a limit to the amount of data and power a transmitter can transmit. Since this also limits the overall performance of a radio control system (range and data rates), radio systems made for the construction industry are carefully optimized to provide the type of performance that meets their requirements.

 

The Big Tradeoff: Speed vs. Range

 

On the jobsite you can run into a slew of unfavorable work conditions, such as completing a job in an area that’s hard to access or having to operate equipment on a large and hectic worksite. When situations like these occur it’s important to have tools that do the job right and that perform well under pressure. This is where narrow band technology shines!

In the context of the construction industry, the biggest difference between wide band and narrow band when it comes to performance is the matter of speed vs. range. Technology that utilizes a narrow band spectrum can reap the benefits of transmitting information over a much further distance with less chance of interference. On the other hand, wide band may transmit data at a faster rate, but at the cost of losing range power and passing excessive radio noise.

Industrial remote control systems should be optimized to provide as much range as possible. This isn’t because you need to go a long distance. In the industrial workplace you may want the radio waves to pass through concrete walls, such as when you’re working around warehouses, apartment buildings and even working underground.

 

To help weigh the differences between Wide and Narrow bandwidths, we’ve provided this informative table below:

 

COMPARING WIDE BAND vs NARROW BAND
WIDE BAND NARROW BAND
Wide band systems support relatively higher data rate transmissions Narrow band systems typically have lower data rate transmissions
Channel-to-channel isolation is lower compared to narrow band channels Channel-to-channel isolation is high because of highly selective filters
Either the entire frequency spectrum is available or a significant portion of it is used by each carrier The total frequency spectrum is divided into as many channels as the technology allows
The probability of interference from other transmitters increased linearly with bandwidth The probability of overlap with an interfering signal is relatively lower
High transmit signal power is needed in wide band channels Low transmit signal power is needed in the case of a narrow band channel

 

 

The choice of bandwidth in the development of radio control systems makes a world of difference when it comes to the construction industry. Aarcomm radio remote control systems use narrow band frequency-hopping technology to maximize performance when controlling industrial equipment remotely. Combined with the expert industry knowledge of our product development teams, our remote control solutions are proving to be the superior, reliable choice for mobile and utility equipment operators. We work hard to bring innovative ideas into our new solutions, solidifying Aarcomm’s place as leaders in the industrial remote control sector.

Aarcomm remote control systems are the tool of choice for many operators of mobile construction and utility vehicles. Read more about our different industry applications or reach out to us at 1.800.604.9218 for more information about our rugged and ready solutions!

 

 

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