JPL's Wireless Communication Reference Website

Chapter: Wireless Channels

Radio Propagation at 60 GHz

Frequencies around 60 GHz experience significant absorption by Oxygen. At 58 GHz the attenuation is about 12 dB/km. This property can be used as an advantage in interference-limited radio networks.

Indoor Propagation

The 60 GHz band can be a good candidate for indoor wireless office communication, once RF components and modules become more widely available. Indoor rms delay spreads presumably are on the order of 15 to 50 nsec. Typical delay profiles show

For 60 GHz in-office propagation, t is about 50 nsec. Oxygen attenuation is not noticeable for such short-range transmission. With highly directional antennas, the delay spread can be reduced to 5 to 8 nanoseconds.

Severe attenuation occurs when signals have to penetrate through glass or wood. This helps to confine cell areas.



double-glazed windows     3 - 7 dB


concrete wall             20-30  dB


Vehicle-to-Vehicle Propagation

Another application can be car-to-car communication. Communication ranges are short, so typical links will not suffer from oxygen attenuation. However, interference from other links is attenuated, particularly if the transmitters are more than a kilometer away.

Metropolitan Area Networks

For point to point communication between office buildings, 60 GHz is an interesting band.

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JPL's Wireless Communication Reference Website 1993, 1996.