Quinlan evaluated the situation and came up with a custom-tuned antenna, the PC-11, a dual band 2.4-5.2 GHz, PCB dipole antenna. It uses the open WiFi system and is flexible, so that it can be stuck directly on the terminal housing. It gives a better connection to the WiFi network, greater sensitivity especially in low signal areas and higher data throughput rates.
“We met some challenges finding the right solution for this device,” said Quinlan. “We had to find space in the device for the antenna to work effectively. The whole back of the device is shielded with metal, and metal is notorious for detuning antennas. Metal also affects the ability of the antenna to function properly. Added to this, there was very little space for the antenna to radiate.”
“The solution we came up with was based on the 802.11n standard, which is a multiple-input and multiple-output (MIMO) system. This means we upgraded from a one-antenna to a two-antenna system. The result of this was that the terminal got higher speed data rates. In doing this, we increased the antenna efficiency from 20% to 45% efficiency, which gives a significant impact to the performance of the Smart Terminal.
There are no set standards for device performance in the WiFi market, so Taoglas tested the PC-11 antenna within the Smart Terminal for WiFi performance. The tests showed that the PC-11 was optimized for JAOtech’s device with the farthest range of connection and the best data throughput.
A Clean Bill of Health for the PC-11
What’s the impact? “The Smart Terminal now works farther away from the wireless routers in the hospital,” said Corri. “The benefit of this is that hospitals do not need to install as many expensive routers because one router can cover a lot more LCD terminals. The terminal itself can now be positioned farther away from the router.
Rooms that were not connected before can now access the wireless system. The bottom line is that hospitals can now have full WiFi access cheaper and more efficiently. It also opens up the possibility of real time video transmission and streaming on the terminal.”
“At the end of the day, improved WiFi means improved connection and a better experience for people in hospitals. We are very happy with the performance of Taoglas’ PC-11 – it gives greater device performance and sensitivity across the entire hospital WiFi network.” said Corri.
Quinlan agrees. “We optimized the performance of the Smart Terminal with the PC-11 antenna and JAOtech has now taken a leap forward over their competitors with a fully optimized wireless solution. The relationship between Taoglas and JAOtech combines JAOtech’s leadership in Smart Terminals and Taoglas’ leadership in wireless antennas. That’s a win-win situation for everybody.