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Author Topic: Verizon Wireless sues Amherst over height of cellular tower  (Read 7830 times)
WA2ISE
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« Reply #15 on: May 08, 2015, 12:13:36 PM »

 so ATT came back five times to the  county, and finally settled for two years in the courts to get a 140 foot tin-tree tower up almost on the border of the wilderness, on the tallest hill that side of Fall Lake,

I'm a city boy, and I thought a wilderness area was an area where people were not allowed to go, other than a forest ranger or two.  Maybe there's another name for an area like that...

Every forest and rural area I've been in always had an Interstate highway going thru it.   Grin
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W0MT
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« Reply #16 on: May 08, 2015, 04:06:27 PM »

Here is a link that describes a wilderness area.

http://wilderness.nps.gov/faqnew.cfm

Its says, " Visitors may hike, fish, camp, watch wildlife, photograph, or hunt (where legally authorized)."
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KB1WSY
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« Reply #17 on: May 13, 2015, 11:02:16 AM »

I reckon it's of the order of a 2:1 difference in served area.

Distance to horizon, for a viewer situated reasonably close to Earth surface (i.e. not a satellite!):

d = √ 2Rh

where R is the radius of the Earth, and h is the height of the observer.

Let's use the kilometer as the basic unit. 75 feet is 0.0229km. 114 feet is 0.0347 km. The radius of the Earth is 6371km.

--d for short tower = √ (2 * 6371 * 0.0229) = 17.08km.

--d for taller tower = √ (2 * 6371 * 0.0347) = 21.02km.

To figure out the area visible from the top of the tower, and using our old friend πR2 we get:

--area for short tower = 916km2.

--area for taller tower = 1388km2 which is a 51 percent greater "coverage area" than for the smaller tower.

I have no idea how these traditional "horizon calculations" have to be adjusted for line-of-sight, GHz-range RF but presumably that's where one starts?

Edited to add: I forgot that most people hold their cellphones at head height, 4 or 5 feet above the ground. That complicates the "horizon math" -- but also considerably increases the coverage area, I suspect.

73 de Martin, KB1WSY
« Last Edit: May 13, 2015, 01:05:44 PM by KB1WSY » Logged
KB1WSY
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« Reply #18 on: May 13, 2015, 01:21:49 PM »

It costs about $100,000 to erect a cellphone tower (source: http://www.celltowerinfo.com/about.htm). Not counting the continuing cost of site rental, maintenance, etc. That figure is for a 150-foot tower but let's use it for the sake of the argument (the costs can rise to three times as much if any "stealth" techniques are used.)

As per my previous post, by increasing the height from 75ft to 114 ft, coverage area was increased by about 50 percent. If you look at the reciprocal of that number, it means you only need 2/3 as many towers to cover the whole country.

Total land area of the United States = 9,161,966 km2 (source, Wikipedia).

Using the figures from the previous post:

Number of short (75ft) towers to cover the whole country = 9,161,966 / 916 = 10,002.

Number of taller (114ft) towers = 9,161,966 / 1,388 = 6,600

Number of tower installations avoided by using taller towers = 10,002 - 6,600 = 3,402.

Multiplied by installation cost of $100K per tower, that's $340 million saved. Quite a lot of money. Plus that doesn't include the management, hardware and software costs involved in coordinating the larger number of cells. Although arguably not a huge deal compared to the size of these telecomms companies. In an ideal, fair world, the lower number of towers would translate to lower consumer bills rather than higher Verizon profits.

(BTW, I have no connection whatsoever with the cellphone industry and in fact have a decidedly jaundiced opinion of their customer service!)

73 de Martin, KB1WSY
« Last Edit: May 13, 2015, 01:25:01 PM by KB1WSY » Logged
KS4VT
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Posts: 153




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« Reply #19 on: May 17, 2015, 06:27:54 PM »

It costs about $100,000 to erect a cellphone tower (source: http://www.celltowerinfo.com/about.htm). Not counting the continuing cost of site rental, maintenance, etc. That figure is for a 150-foot tower but let's use it for the sake of the argument (the costs can rise to three times as much if any "stealth" techniques are used.)

As per my previous post, by increasing the height from 75ft to 114 ft, coverage area was increased by about 50 percent. If you look at the reciprocal of that number, it means you only need 2/3 as many towers to cover the whole country.

Total land area of the United States = 9,161,966 km2 (source, Wikipedia).

Using the figures from the previous post:

Number of short (75ft) towers to cover the whole country = 9,161,966 / 916 = 10,002.

Number of taller (114ft) towers = 9,161,966 / 1,388 = 6,600

Number of tower installations avoided by using taller towers = 10,002 - 6,600 = 3,402.

Multiplied by installation cost of $100K per tower, that's $340 million saved. Quite a lot of money. Plus that doesn't include the management, hardware and software costs involved in coordinating the larger number of cells. Although arguably not a huge deal compared to the size of these telecomms companies. In an ideal, fair world, the lower number of towers would translate to lower consumer bills rather than higher Verizon profits.

(BTW, I have no connection whatsoever with the cellphone industry and in fact have a decidedly jaundiced opinion of their customer service!)

73 de Martin, KB1WSY

That would only be true if the capacity requirements for all of the towers are identical across the US. Unfortunately they are not and the carriers purposely reduce the heights of certain taller sites and/or add additional antenna downtilt and then put in either full sites or microcells in between to increase the capacity in a particular area.  You can't go just by height alone due to their finite bandwidth and the need to reuse frequencies over and over in their licensed markets.
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