What is ground wave communication? Why can it not be used for long distace using high frequency?

What is ground wave communication? Why can it not be used for long distace using high frequency?

Grade:Upto college level

1 Answers

Apoorva Arora IIT Roorkee
askIITians Faculty 181 Points
8 years ago
Ground Wave propagation is a method of radio frequency propagation that uses the area between the surface of the earth and the ionosphere for transmission. The ground wave can propagate a considerable distance over the earth's surface particularly in the low frequency and medium frequency portion of the radio spectrum. Ground wave radio propagation is used to provide relatively local radio communications coverage.

Ground wave radio signal propagation is ideal for relatively short distance propagation on these frequencies during the daytime. Sky-wave ionospheric propagation is not possible during the day because of the attenuation of the signals on these frequencies caused by the D region in the ionosphere. In view of this, lower frequency radio communications stations need to rely on the ground-wave propagation to achieve their coverage.

Typically, what is referred to as a ground wave radio signal is made up of a number of constituent waves. If the antennas are in the line of sight then there will be a direct wave as well as a reflected signal. As the names suggest the direct signal is one that travels directly between the two antennas and is not affected by the locality. There will also be a reflected signal as the transmission will be reflected by a number of objects including the earth's surface and any hills, or large buildings that may be present. In addition to this there is a surface wave. This tends to follow the curvature of the Earth and enables coverage beyond the horizon. It is the sum of all these components that is known as the ground wave. Beyond the horizon the direct and reflected waves are blocked by the curvature of the Earth, and the signal is purely made up of the diffracted surface wave. It is for this reason that surface wave is commonly called ground wave propagation.

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