Continuing the discussion about wireless standards we talked about the 802.11 – Legacy standard (See the post 802.11 – Legacy) Today’s post will be talking about the IEEE 802.11a standard. On Monday I talked about the Basic Wireless Concepts (See the post Basic Wireless Concepts) in that post I mentioned the wireless standards but did not go further into detail. This post will be going over the second standard 802.11a out of the five standards that make up the 802.11.

The 802.11a was published in 1999 and operates in the 5GHz band instead of the 2.4GHz band because of this 802.11a uses only the Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM) which does have an advantage to still operate under severe channel conditions, like attenuation, and interference.

The 802.11a in theory has maximum raw data rate of 54Mbit/s however because of the varied conditions you should expect 802.11a to have a maximum speed around 20Mbit/s. What is different between the 802.11a and other 802.11 standards is the fact that the 802.11a standard has 12 channels that are not overlapping each other. Since the 802.11a standard only operates in the 5GHz band it does not get has much interference compared to the 2.4GHz range.

That’s it for this summary for the 802.11a standard. Check back tomorrow and I’ll be posting the 802.11b standard. I hope this information was informative and let me know if you have any ideas on the next topic that deal with either ICND1 or ICND2.


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