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A Study of Radio Signal Behaviors in Complex Environments Lee Ee Foong Chen Wang Li Xiao Computer Science Department Michigan State University Michigan MI Email leeee msu edu Abstract This paper presents a study of how radio signal behaves in complex environments where the effects of reflections and obstructions are taken into consideration We collect the RSSI data of each environment and use an objective metric to evaluate the experimental result The base metric that is used for evaluations is the radio signal strength behavior in an open flat area that is free from reflections and obstructions We reveal that radio signal strength does not work well in all indoor and complex outdoor environments that are selected for experiment purposes due to the effects of reflections and obstructions Radio signal strength only correlates with distance in unobstructed outdoor environment We also demonstrate that the elevation of sensor nodes can reduces the reflections and obstructions effects both indoors and outdoors the RSSI models that contradict to the previous defined RSSI models Radio signal strength does not always fall off linearly or theoretically with distance In this paper we collect the RSSI data that can be used for range estimation in more complex environments The degree of complexity depends on the amount of reflections and obstructions that are present in the environment Unlike the signal strength behavior in an open space in which there are no reflections and obstructions the signal strength performs much more unpredictable with increasingly complicated environment The purpose is to show how great the effects of reflections and obstructions on RSSI characteristics We demonstrate our methodology in a natural forest with highly dense of tall trees and bushes with only 2 sensor nodes one is intended for transmitting signals and the other one is for receiving and measuring signal strengths We then repeat the experiment in an obstructed basketball court and



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