, Volume 113, Issue 1-2, pp 127-135,
Open Access This content is freely available online to anyone, anywhere at any time.

Radiowave propagation measurements in Nigeria (preliminary reports)

Abstract

International conferences on frequency coordination have, in recent years, required new information on radiowave propagation in tropical regions and, in particular, on propagation in Africa. The International Telecommunications Union (ITU-R) initiated ‘radio-wave propagation measurement campaign’ in some African countries some years back. However, none of the ITU-initiated experiments were mounted in Nigeria, and hence, there is lack of adequate understanding of the propagation mechanisms associated with this region of the tropics. The Centre for Basic Space Science (CBSS) of NASRDA has therefore embarked on propagation data collection from the different climatic zones of Nigeria (namely Coastal, Guinea Savannah, Midland, and Sahelian) with the aim of making propagation data available to the ITU, for design and prediction purposes in order to ensure a qualitative and effective communication system in Nigeria. This paper focuses on the current status of propagation data from Nigeria (collected by CBSS), identifying other parameters that still need to be obtained. The centre has deployed weather stations to different locations in the country for refractivity measurements in clear atmosphere, at the ground surface and at an altitude of 100 m, being the average height of communication mast in Nigeria. Other equipments deployed are Micro Rain Radar and Nigerian Environmental and Climatic Observing Program equipments. Some of the locations of the measurement stations are Nsukka (7.4° E, 6.9° N), Akure (5.12° E, 7.15° N), Minna (6.5° E, 9.6° N), Sokoto (5.25° E, 13.08° N), Jos (8.9° E, 9.86° N), and Lagos (3.35° E, 6.6° N). The results obtained from the data analysis have shown that the refractivity values vary with climatic zones and seasons of the year. Also, the occurrence probability of abnormal propagation events, such as super refraction, sub-refraction, and ducting, depends on the location as well as the local time. We have also attempted to identify and calculate the most important propagation factors and associated data, such as k factor, that are relevant in considerations of propagation in tropical regions like Nigeria.