AMS Enables Deployment of Wi-Fi Technology at a Nuclear Plant
AMS recently completed a project to deploy an industrial Wi-Fi network at a Nuclear Power Plant (NPP) to facilitate voice and data communications throughout the plant.
An industrial Wi-Fi network is established using several Access Points (APs) installed throughout the facility to provide signal coverage over a target area. Optimizing the Wi-Fi network depends on several factors including AP placement, orientation, and operating characteristics (e.g., transmission frequency and power, antenna type, etc.). For most residential and industrial applications, there are few restrictions on the number or placement of the APs comprising the Wi-Fi network.
In NPPs, however, there are several unique challenges to the deployment of a Wi-Fi network including:
- Large buildings, high-ceiling rooms, open-air spaces
- Lead-lined block and rebar-reinforced concrete walls
- Metallic plant components and equipment
- Sensitive instrumentation and electrical equipment
To address these challenges, AMS developed a staged approach and implemented it as part of the Wi‑Fi deployment project:
- Review Plant Specifications, Blueprints, and Requirements
- Generate a Software-Predictive Wi-Fi Coverage Map of the Plant
- Perform an On-Site Survey to Validate the Wi-Fi Coverage Map
- Install APs based on the Validated Wi-Fi Coverage Map
- Perform Post-Installation Survey to Verify Wi-Fi Network Performance
Each progressive step in the AMS approach builds to a methodology that can be used to optimize a wireless network to enable reliable signal coverage, minimize the number of APs required, and avoid electromagnetic interference issues. A well-planned wireless network establishes both primary and secondary coverage areas to ensure network resiliency and facilitate client roaming.
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