60 GHz Wireless: Up Close and Personal

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Introduction: The millimeter-wave band, especially the unlicensed spectrum at the 60 GHz carrier frequency, is at the spectral frontier of high-bandwidth commercial wireless communication systems. Compared with microwave band communication, spectrum at 60 GHz is plentiful (frequencies of 57–64 GHz are available in North America and Korea, 59–66 GHz in Europe and Japan [1], [2]), but attenuation is more severe (20 dB larger free space path loss due to the order of magnitude increase in carrier frequency, 5–30 dB/km due to atmospheric conditions [3], and higher loss in common building materials [4]). These characteristics make 60 GHz communication most suitable for close-range applications of gigabit wireless data transfer.

by Kuma CTO Robert Daniels, CINO Robert Heath, Jr., et al.
Copyright 2010 IEEE. Reprinted from IEEE Microwave Mag., pp. S44-S50, Dec. 2010.

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