Distributed Antenna Systems
Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS) is a communications system that brings in wireless signals from outside your building, amplifies that signal with a signal booster, and then evenly distributes those signals throughout the building for greatly improved wireless signal quality. Here we will look at the 2 main types of DAS, how DAS works, why you should utilize this system, the benefits DAS can provide and the DAS services and solutions that NCS offers.
How A DAS Works
Cellular or First Responder radio service, which may be perfect just outside a building, can degrade once you get inside. This happens because common building materials such as Low-E glass, metal and concrete can block or degrade the wireless signal. This leads to poor quality wireless service inside buildings which can hurt internal and external corporate communication, personal communication, and the communication of first responders in the event of an emergency. This problem is especially prevalent in large buildings that are segmented into multiple rooms.
The DAS Solution
To solve this all too common problem, you need to amplify the cellular signal throughout your building or property, so it provides great service to every square inch of the property. That is exactly how a Distributed antenna system (DAS) solves this issue, by amplifying cellular coverage within a building. It can also amplify the signal around an entire property with poor service, regardless of the building or property size.
The system works by distributing the available outside cell signal over a system of small antennas installed around the building or property. These smaller antennas disperse the cell signal throughout the building to provide perfect coverage throughout.
Types of DAS and Why You Might Need One:
Depending on where you are located, installing a DAS may be more than just a good idea. It may be the law. The NFPA & IFC have set regulations and work with local municipalities to certify that requirements are in place that will result in reliable and life-saving communications for emergency responders using UHF, VHF, 700 Mhz/800Mhz frequencies.
There are two main categories of DAS, each with a distinct purpose. They are:
Cellular – Cellular Distributed Antenna Systems (DAS), which you also may have heard called an ‘in-building wireless system’, is an ideal solution to combat poor cellular reception inside a building. With this system, a network of small antennas is installed to serve as cellular signal repeaters which boost the full-strength cellular signal picked up outside the building. These antennas are physically connected to a central head-end controller which is integrated with the wireless carrier’s network.
Public Safety – Emergency communications are imperative in the event of a fire, natural disaster, security threat, or other emergencies. A Public Safety Distributed Antenna System (DAS) guarantees that emergency personnel can maintain radio communication in an emergency throughout an entire building. New regulations have been put in place by local, state and the federal government since 9/11 to ensure that emergency first responders and government employees have access to dependable radio coverage in the event of an emergency.
The Benefits of a DAS system
- Improved voice and data for mobile – Everyone on your property will experience better in-building or outdoor coverage for all their connected devices.
- Better Density Coverage – The more devices using the same signal, the weaker it can become. DAS allows for a stronger signal for more devices.
- Enhanced LTE Performance – A DAS will improve LTE to mobile devices making them faster and more reliable.
- Brings more financial value to your property – DAS offers increased reliability to future occupants which is a key selling feature when you are attracting tenants or selling a property. In the ultra-competitive commercial property market, owners who install DAS will find that their building becomes more attractive to buyers or leasers and it will increase the overall value.
- Public Safety – Make sure your building is compliant with IFC Section 510 or NFPA72. Law enforcement, fire, and EMS responders rely heavily on radio communication devices during and emergency. In these life and death situations, they cannot afford to experience signal loss or delays with their communication. Public Safety DAS allows for full connectivity during an emergency and makes your building a safer place.
NCS Services and Solutions
NCS offers DAS RF surveys, benchmark assessments, consulting, network design, and more to address all your DAS needs. We will start with a wireless site survey and a wireless signal strength test to assess your current situation.
If your property is experiencing dead zones or a lack of quality service, we will craft a custom solution to ensure that the tenants and any emergency personnel will be well-taken care. We will then design and install a system that creates the highest quality and highest performing mobile signal for your building. Our systems work in any type of environment and can pair with either a single cellular signal provider of multiple providers.