1. Limited time only! Sign up for a free 30min personal tutor trial with Chegg Tutors
    Dismiss Notice
Dismiss Notice
Join Physics Forums Today!
The friendliest, high quality science and math community on the planet! Everyone who loves science is here!

Radio wave propagation

  1. Sep 14, 2014 #1
    Hi I wonder if any one could advise how a radio wave would propagate around a metal object? Basically, I have a GPS antenna and due to mechanical issues the antenna is obscured by a mounting screw that sits in front of the antenna by about 2~3cm. I understand that the radio wave would become reflected/refracted/diffracted/scattered to some greater or lesser degree and is wavelength dependant. I wondered if any one could advise how much an effect this screw would have and advise any approximations or assumptions that could be made?
    Many thanks
  2. jcsd
  3. Sep 15, 2014 #2

    Simon Bridge

    User Avatar
    Science Advisor
    Homework Helper

    Welcome to PF;
    Much the same way a water-wave does.

    Diffraction effects are important if the screw is similar in size to the wavelength of the signal.
    If the screw is large compared with the wavelength, then you get more of a shadow effect.

    Unless you are very unlucky, or you've left something out, the screw should have almost no effect.
  4. Sep 15, 2014 #3
    Thank you for your reply Simon, very helpful!
Share this great discussion with others via Reddit, Google+, Twitter, or Facebook