Marine Antenna Placement Questions

Hi everyone -

I am the SVP of IT and my CEO asked for my help in reviewing the network design for his 60’ Nordhavn trawler.

In doing my research on Peplink, I was able to connect with Sam Norris, who was kind enough to work with myself, my CEO, and Philbrook’s boat yard to design the Peplink celluar network system for the Nordhavn.

Sam recommended two Poynting Antenna’s and one PUMA 401 to connect to the MAX-HD2-MBX LTEA, unfortunately we are running into placement problems and had the following questions:

  1. The two Poynting antennas are in the direct line of the commercial radar beam. Will the radar emissions simply cause interference with cell reception or will it damage the cell radio?

  2. We are currently using one Puma antenna (with four outputs and one GPS output) and two Poynting antennas (with two outputs each). I know Sam explained this to me but I cannot find my notes, so can someone remind me the reason for using the two different types of antennas? Could we just get away with two Puma’s? I see from the specs the Poynting seems to receive lower frequencies?

  3. If we must keep the two Poynting antennas, and want to mount these outside of the radar beam to avoid damage, what is the impact of mounting them to the ships superstructure?

RADAR

  • Yes, radar emissions cause interference with cell reception & vice versa.

  • Put radar antenna on it’s own horizontal plane

  • Keep all antennas out of the 15 degree beam

https://support.garmin.com/en-US/?faq=3N1xrYyYWS4em21fhxoTs9

CELL ANTENNAS

  • This HD2 MBX model has 8 SMA Antenna Connectors - so you need either:

a Puma 401 & two Poynting antennas
or
two Puma 401 antennas

1 Like

how close will you be able to place the peplink to the antennas? distance is your enemy.

@CBNW - thanks for the feedback - the boat owner does not anticipate using the radar and the Cellular system at the same time - so if he is willing to suffer the signal loss can he mount them in the same path without risking damage to the systems?

Also, can you speak to the intent of mixing the mast type Poynting Antenna and the dome type Puma? Is there an advantage to this configuration?

@mystery - I am unsure, I know Philbrooks and Sam talked that through.

Horrible idea mounting antennas in any way they can interfere with one another. Most every yacht uses internet and radar at the same time. I dont know why the owner does not anticipate that but thats not reality.

Yes, the radar and cell antennas can be mounted on the same plane. I doubt the radar RF will damage the cell antenna. If it does, replacing the cell antenna is probably less than the cost of redesigning the mast. Not Vatican approved - but doable.

Perhaps Sam’s logic was ‘diversity’ in his recommendation of a Poynting & Puma hybrid. They have different RF propagation characteristics.

I believe I read that the poyntings linear design performs better while underway with some pitch & roll.
The Puma’s are designed for vehicles, which don’t pitch & roll.

However, since this is a standard leisure yacht, I don’t think either config will be significantly different. You can always try both configs as they use the same cabling.

That was my concern with the domes… I think I asked that question about the Poyntings versus dome antenna type and placement…in a different thread… boats pitch and roll a lot… that is why I didnt think Peplink Dome or Dome type antennas would be advisable on a boat…