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Visualization of the effect that a microwave oven has on wifi
This thread has 6 replies. Displaying all posts.
Post 1 made on Wednesday July 11, 2018 at 16:59
Ernie Gilman
Yes, That Ernie!
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[Link: reddit.com]

Here's one of the comments on these graphs:
Here's the backstory: I was taking a class in wireless networking, and one of our homework assignments was to measure the throughput over Wifi between a laptop and a Compaq iPaq with a microwave oven providing interference. I never thought to post them here until I saw the post showing a spectrogram of a microwave oven. The setup for this was a coffee cup of water placed on the center of the turntable of our home microwave, run for two minutes, and capture throughput data (how fast the data is actually getting through the link). I ran the test on four different channels (1, 3, 5 and 6). The green lines show the base line captured on each channel before I turned the microwave on. The red line shows the throughput with the microwave running. The channel 5 graph is my favorite, as it shows a clear dip every 6 seconds, which is the turning rate of the microwave turntable.

The data was collected using a tool called "iperf", which measures the rate of data going between two clients in a network.

Just as an off-topic point of interest, one of the comments has a link to a Compaq computer ad from the wayback machine.

A good answer is easier with a clear question giving the make and model of everything.
"The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." -- G. “Bernie” Shaw
Post 2 made on Wednesday July 11, 2018 at 17:27
weddellkw
Long Time Member
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182
So, the 6 second turn-rate for the table...does that mean the motor is the interference source on channel 5?

My initial thought was something related to the motor completing a turn, but I doubt it would be running on a 6-second rotation as opposed to being much faster and geared-down to the desired turn rate.
Post 3 made on Wednesday July 11, 2018 at 17:53
buzz
Super Member
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The cooking vessel might not be perfectly centered on the rotating platform. The microwave field is not uniform inside the cavity, that's why the food is rotated. External emissions will depend somewhat on the energy absorbed by the food, which varies by position in the cavity.
Post 4 made on Wednesday July 11, 2018 at 20:25
Brad Humphrey
Select Member
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Nothing new here. Anyone who has been serious with WiFi knows the effects microwave ovens have.
And to add info to those who don't know, the individual microwave can vary HUGE in how much interference it creates. i.e. some microwaves might not create much interference at all. While others...
I once seen a microwave that would completely crash WiFi in a house, no matter what channel you tried to use. 0 connection when it was on. On that job I suggested the customer get a new microwave. Not just because of the WiFi but also because it was obviously defective and giving an excessive amount of radiation to anyone nearby when operating.

Also note: Some of these excessively RF noisy microwaves dump large amounts of interference on the electrical line. Have seen UPB lighting controls become inoperative when the crappy microwave was working. Signal meter in UPStart would show noise pegged to red when the microwave kicked on.
OP | Post 5 made on Wednesday July 11, 2018 at 20:33
Ernie Gilman
Yes, That Ernie!
Joined:
Posts:
December 2001
28,480
On July 11, 2018 at 20:25, Brad Humphrey said...
Nothing new here. Anyone who has been serious with WiFi knows...

One of the coolest things about this site is sharing information with those who don't know it all.

And to add info to those who don't know,

And you see value in sharing, too. Nice.

I once seen a microwave that would completely crash WiFi in a house,

And newbs need to have someone say out loud that this can happen, because it's almost beyond imagination. Hell, I'll NEVER forget the PAR lamp in a garden that interfered with a client's DirecTV modulated onto a TV channel. Beyond imagination.
A good answer is easier with a clear question giving the make and model of everything.
"The biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." -- G. “Bernie” Shaw
Post 6 made on Wednesday July 11, 2018 at 21:08
Brad Humphrey
Select Member
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Posts:
February 2004
1,603
Or the old radar detectors that could knock out some satellite services if they were within 50' of a dish.
Post 7 made on Thursday July 12, 2018 at 10:24
radiorhea
Super Member
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Posts:
May 2002
3,004
Had a client's AC compressor going out. It created some type of RF noise and all of the RTI antennas were solid red! Nothing would work. Two days we were testing, swapping out equipment....nothing. I was outside on a call and noticed that the AC compressor was making a grinding noise. Let the client know. We shut off the breaker to it and

WHAM!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Everything started working again.

Still hard to believe....

RR
Drinking upstream from the herd since 1960


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