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6, JUNE 2011

2357

Environments at Tree Trunk Level

Joaquim A. R. Azevedo and Filipe E. S. Santos

forest environments is very dependent on the vegetation density.

However, most published empirical models only provide calculation of the path loss as a function of distance and frequency. The

importance of these models is their simplicity. This paper presents

a model that was developed from an extensive measurement campaign carried out for different vegetation densities and types of

trees. Noting the typical decaying behaviour of signal propagation, the objective was to estimate the main parameters of the lognormal model that fits the measured data. Since in many applications both the transmitter and the receiver are inside the forest,

the propagation path is mainly characterized by tree trunks. In

this case, it was found that the signal attenuation is dependent on

the vegetation density, defined by the product of the tree density

and the average diameter of the trunks. In addition to the measurements used to develop the model, other experiments were conducted to test it. The study also included a comparison with other

methods in order to evaluate the performance of the model.

Index TermsAttenuation measurement, forest density, propagation models.

I. INTRODUCTION

developments for forest monitoring [1], [2]. The deployment of a wireless sensor network inside a forest environment

requires prior knowledge of the distance between nodes in order

to provide full connectivity. Therefore, propagation algorithms

to determine the path loss and the broadcast signal coverage are

essential for network planning. The transmitted signal may experience severe attenuation due to the scattering, diffraction, reflection and absorption effects caused by the trees. Propagation

models that allow foreseeing the signal attenuation can be derived either empirically or theoretically. The former are simpler

but their application is limited to the environments where the

data was collected to determine the main parameters. The latter

are more general but require a large database of environmental

characteristics, which may be impractical [3].

Some well-known empirical models were developed to determine the attenuation for a wide range of frequencies [4][9].

These models are very simple but do not provide any control

Manuscript received January 26, 2010; revised October 07, 2010; accepted

November 15, 2010. Date of publication April 19, 2011; date of current version

June 02, 2011. This work was supported by the CCM research unit and by the

FEDER program of the European Community through the Interreg III B-05/

MAC/2.3/C16 project.

The authors are with the Exact Sciences and Engineering Centre, University

of Madeira, Funchal, Portugal (e-mail: jara@uma.pt).

Digital Object Identifier 10.1109/TAP.2011.2143664

parameters related to the forest environment. Other works evaluate some existing empirical models and adapt their parameters

to be in agreement with measured results at certain frequencies

[10], [11]. Noting a logarithmic decay of the average received

signal with the distance, some authors use the log-normal path

loss model to calculate the attenuation produced by vegetation

[12][15]. The recommendation of the International Telecommunication Union for attenuation in vegetation consists of a

model based on the theory of radiative energy transfer [16]. The

total loss is calculated by combining the diffraction and scattering effects produced by the trees and by the reflection on the

ground. Nevertheless, measurements must be performed to extract the vegetation parameters.

For the present paper, it was important to evaluate the conditions under which the measurements to develop propagation

models for forest environments are usually carried out. In some

situations, trees are oriented in a single line, contrasting with the

random nature of a forest [6], [7], [10], [17]. Tewari, Swarup,

and Roy [18] developed an empirical model based on measurements undertaken in tropical rain forest of India, for frequencies

of 50, 200, 500, and 800 MHz. Fifteen receiving points were

chosen for distances between 40 m and 4 Km. Chen and Kuo [9]

measured the attenuation in a forest environment for frequencies between 1 and 100 GHz (with steps of 5 GHz) and for ten

receiving points between 10 and 100 m. Wang and Sarabandi

[19] conducted measurements with red pine stand for three different forest densities at 500 MHz. Phaiboon and Somkuarnpanit [14] obtained the parameters of the log-normal model for

three groups of trees at 1.8 GHz and for receiving points at 3,

4, and 5 m above the ground. The difference in results is small

for the three receiving antenna heights. Meng, Lee, and Ng [11]

performed measurements in a palm plantation at frequencies of

240 and 700 MHz.

As can be noticed from published works, the measurement

data collected inside forests are very limited. Due to the great

complexity of theoretical models and randomness of forest environments, the development of empirical models to estimate the

attenuation produced by trees remains a challenging research

issue. For the purposes of forest monitoring, the knowledge of

the propagation behavior is required at a few meters above the

ground and for distances up to a few hundred meters from the

transmitter. In this case, in many situations the propagation path

is at the tree trunk level. Interestingly, even in dense forests the

leaves are usually at the higher levels of the forest in order to

reach the sunlight. Therefore, the regions inside the vegetation

are mainly dominated by trunks and branches without leaves, a

trend that ends at the forest limits.

In this paper, an empirical model is developed that considers

parameters related to the forest environment. For this purpose,

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ANTENNAS AND PROPAGATION, VOL. 59, NO. 6, JUNE 2011

the situations in which the trees are in-leaf or out-of-leaf. The

excess attenuation is given by

an extensive measurement campaign was carried out for two frequencies of the ISM (Industrial, Scientific, and Medical) bands:

900 MHz and 2.4 GHz. Since several empirical models provide

the relation between attenuation and frequency, this information

and the measured data allowed the tweaking of the parameters

of the developed model to predict the attenuation for a wider

range of frequencies.

in-leaf

out-of-leaf

(4)

[5], Al-Nuaimi and Stephens [7] have developed a model using

measurement data at 11.2 and 20 GHz (FITU-R model)

in-leaf

out-of-leaf

(5)

the path loss. One of the most simple is the free space loss [20]

with in MHz and in m. Meng, Lee, and Ng [11] have optimized this equation for the VHF and UHF bands with measurement data at 240 MHz and 700 MHz. The model takes into

account the lateral component where the signal follows the treetops. The lateral ITU-R model is defined by

(1)

(6)

in meters. This is a theoretical model valid for the far-field region when the first ellipsoid of Fresnel is free of obstacles. To

include the ground reflection over a plane earth, the path loss is

given by

valid for in-leaf since the model was developed with measurements of a palm plantation. The model proposed by Chen and

Kuo [9] is given for vertical and horizontal polarizations

(2)

and

the transmitter and receiver antenna heights,

with

and is the wavelength. For large disrespectively,

tances from the transmitter, that is,

, (2) only de, and

, and the attenuation exceeds the one

pends on ,

corresponding to the free space [20].

For empirical models, it has been found that the one developed by Weissberger [4] estimates the excess attenuation produced by vegetation

(3)

vertical

horizontal

(7)

with in GHz and in m.

From the presented models, it may be noticed that they depend on the frequency and distance but no other parameters related to the forest environment are considered.

Another important model extensively used is the log-normal

[21], with the path loss given by

(8)

with the path loss exponent, that indicates the rate at which

for free space),

the signal attenuates with the distance (

is the path loss at a known reference distance

in the

denotes a zero mean Gaussian random variable

far-field and

2359

TABLE I

PARAMETERS FOR 870 MHz (n; P L(d ); )

the received power around the average. The three variables of

(8) can be used to obtain a relationship between the path loss

inside a forest and the parameters of trees.

To evaluate the possibility of using the log-normal model to

obtain the path loss in forest environments, some initial measurements were performed for places with different tree densities. A XBee-PRO sensor node was used to transmit a signal

at 2.4 GHz with 18 dBm of maximum output power. The re-

ceived signal is measured with a spectrum analyzer. Measurements were performed with antennas at 2.7 m above the ground,

with vertical polarization, and for a distance of 1 m between

measuring points. Fig. 1 shows two measurement sets, represented by small circles and dots. The first one was carried out

and trunks with 30

in a zone of pine trees with 0.075

cm of average diameter. The second set of measurements was

and 14

carried out in a cryptomeria forest with 0.4

cm of average diameter of trunks. For comparison, Fig. 1 also

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ANTENNAS AND PROPAGATION, VOL. 59, NO. 6, JUNE 2011

figure, existing empirical models produce large errors in the prediction of the attenuation. The Chen and Kuo model follows the

first set of measurements very well but not the second one. The

Weissberger model and the FITU-R out-of-leaf model follow

the second set but produce large errors for the first one.

From the results, as aforementioned, the empirical models are

valid for environments similar to those used to derive the expressions. Furthermore, even for the same frequency great differences exist between predictions. Therefore, it is necessary to

relate the path loss with the forest environment parameters for

a better estimation of the attenuation.

The log-normal model can be used to fit the measured data,

which is accomplished by the least squares fit method. The application of this model to the previous results is represented in

Fig. 2. For the results defined by circles, the parameters of the

,

,

log-normal model are:

. For the results defined by dots, the parameand

,

ters of the log-normal model are:

, and

. The logarithmic decay of the received

signal power is easily identified in the graphs. It is clear that the

log-normal model is suitable to estimate the attenuation. The

next stage is to determine the relation between the log-normal

parameters and the forest characteristics.

III. MEASUREMENTS

To develop an adequate model to deal with systems whose

transmitter and receiver are inside vegetation, an extensive campaign of measurements was carried out in several forests of the

Madeira Island for different tree species, densities and trunk diameters. This task lasted more than two years. The study was

performed for two frequencies bands (900 MHz and 2.4 GHz)

in order to relate the attenuation with frequency. Fig. 3 shows

the experimental model used to perform the measurements.

For the measurements at the first band, the frequency of 870

MHz was chosen which is inside the band considered in Europe.

The transmitter is a Signal Generator IFR2030 with 10 dBm of

output power and the receiver is a Spectrum Analyzer R&S FSH

with 6 GHz bandwidth. The system uses two dipoles, each with

1.8 dBi of antenna gain measured in the cable entry. The antennas were placed 3 m above the ground and were connected to

the system through RG213/U coaxial cables. For the second frequency band, the AWM612 TX transmitter, operating at 2.414

GHz with 27 dBm of output power, was used. The transmitter

antenna is a monopole of 2.2 dBi and the receiver antenna is a

dipole of 1.9 dBi.

The measurements were made in about thirty different places

with several different tree types. Most experimental data were

collected for distances up to 90 m from the transmitter. Depending on the forest conditions for providing larger distances

with a similar density of trees, several measurements were carried out for distances up to 120 or 140 m. The experimental data

were collected at one meter of distance between measurement

points, giving more than five thousand positions. The path loss

includes the free space loss and the excess attenuation produced

by the forest environment.

Twenty measurement sets were considered to develop a

model based on the log-normal decaying. The other data sets

were used to evaluate the model. The main parameters of the

model were extracted by curve fitting of the data. Fig. 4 shows

an example with measurements performed up to 120 m in an

area of pine trees. Over each measurement set the curve of tendency that provides values for the parameters of the log-normal

model is shown.

Tables I and II show the log-normal model parameters for

870 MHz and 2.414 GHz, respectively. The first column corresponds to the tree type. It was important to cover several types of

forest vegetation and different densities. In the second column

the average density of trees is shown and the third one represents the average diameter of trunks. The measurements cover

areas from low-density environments up to very dense environments. In the fourth column, a parameter was defined that is the

by the average diameter

multiplication of the tree density

,

of trunks

(9)

The table rows are sorted in rising order of this parameter. The

,

remaining columns show the model parameters

extracted from data of different distances of the last measured

position (50 m, 60 m, 70 m, 80 m, and 90 m). In this paper, it is

.

supposed that

In the first line of each cell of parameters the path loss expo.

nent parameter is presented. In general, increases with

Another important aspect is the dependence of to the distance

to the last measured position, usually increasing with that value.

Several measurements carried out in other places up to distances

of 140 m demonstrated that, in general, this parameter continues

to increase although more slowly.

the forest parameters were constructed. The best results were

. This relation is

obtained for the relation between and

approximately linear. Although this relationship shows considerable variability for distances until 50 m, consistent results are

produced for larger distances of the last measurement position.

Fig. 5 shows the graphs for measurements considered up to 90

m. Comparing the path loss parameter of both frequencies, is

on average 0.1 higher for 2.414 GHz than for 870 MHz. This

.

difference tends to decrease with the density

parameter was also obtained by curve fitting of

The

data. These results are represented in the second line of each

cell of parameters of Tables I and II. In contrast to the evoludecreases with the

tion of , in general, the parameter

distance of the last measured position. Therefore, although the

curve of tendency exhibits a higher decay rate with distance, this

. Thus, the attenuation does

is performed with a lower

not increase drastically.

and

were constructed.

Several graphs relating

Fig. 6 shows the results for measurements considered up to 90

m. They show that some values diverge from the linear tendency. To understand this difference, other experiments were

conducted in the same forest region, but in different places. It

was found out that trees in the front of the transmitter may produce a greater blockage of signals.

After removing the free space loss and comparing the results

is on average 0.8 dB higher for

of both frequencies,

2.414 GHz than for 870 MHz. This finding is consistent with

models that relate excess attenuation with the frequency.

The last parameter considered for the log-normal model is

defined by the standard deviation, .

the random variable

As performed for the other parameters, several graphs relating

and

were constructed. Fig. 7 shows the standard deviation

for measurements performed up to 90 m. For other distances this

parameter suffers less variability than the previous parameters.

IV. EMPIRICAL MODEL

The objective is to relate each parameter of the log-normal

model with the forest characteristics. The results of Tables I and

II were used in this study, except those of the 50 m column since

the parameters extracted with this distance vary greatly.

2361

870 MHz

2.414 GHz

870 MHz

2.414 GHz

(11)

These curves are represented in Fig. 8 by the dashed line for 870

MHz and by the continuous line for 2.414 GHz. The expressions

above 60 m. From

defined in (11) are valid for values of

tends to the free space value

for very long

(11),

distances.

is in

Using (10) and (11), the relation between and

a very good correspondence with the linear relations obtained

from measurements. The standard deviations for the difference

between the simulated and the measured results are shown in

Table III.

B. Parameter

The parameter

was evaluated with a procedure identical to the one performed for parameter . Thus, the results of

the last four columns of Tables I and II were represented in sevby

eral graphs similar to that of Fig. 6. Defining

(12)

it was concluded that the parameter

, being

the free space at

870 MHz

2.414 GHz

(13)

and

is

represented in Fig. 9 by circles and dots. The following relations

were obtained by linear fitting:

870 MHz

2.414 GHz

(14)

for 870 MHz and by the continuous line for 2.414 GHz.

were determined using

The simulated results for

(12). The standard deviations for the difference between the

and the measured results are shown in

simulated

Table IV.

C. Standard Deviation

To evaluate the parameter in order to be valid for several

distances of the last measured position, the results of the last

four columns of Tables I and II were used to obtain graphs simis apilar to that of Fig. 5. As the relation between and

proximately linear, the two constants of the linear fitting were

represented in a graph. Therefore, the path loss exponent parameter is given by

(10)

is the distance to the transmitter considered for deterIf

mining the log-normal model parameters, Fig. 8(a) relates the

with

and Fig. 8(b) refers to

. These paparameter

rameters were determined by curve fitting, giving

, can be defined by the standard deviation. Fig. 7 reveals

that a good approximation of the values is obtained by using

, it is considered

the mean. Since the results vary little with

that

870 MHz

2.414 GHz

(15)

MHz and 0.7 dB for 2.414 GHz.

D. Distances Near the Transmitter

The parameters and

were defined as a function of

and

. The log-normal model is also defined by the distance to the transmitter

to obtain an estimation of the path

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ANTENNAS AND PROPAGATION, VOL. 59, NO. 6, JUNE 2011

TABLE II

PARAMETERS FOR 2.414 GHz (n; P L(d ); )

than 60 m, one can choose the value of

as the maximum

distance to be simulated. For distances below 60 m, it should

in the calculation of and

,

be considered

except for those near the transmitter. In this case, the model estimates an attenuation lower than that of free space. From measurements in this region, it may be noticed that the attenuation

follows that of the free space model. The distances for which

this approximation is valid is obtained after the calculation of

and

. Therefore, the free space model is applied up to

the maximum distance given by

(16)

defined in (13). The maximum distance obtained

with

from measurements is on average 4.6 m for 870 MHz and 3.4

m for 2.414 GHz.

2363

. (b) x

TABLE III

STANDARD DEVIATIONS OF THE ESTIMATION OF n

The expressions derived for determining the parameters of

the log-normal model were developed for the frequencies used

in the measurements. However, it is important to generalize the

model for other frequencies.

For the parameter , Fig. 10(a) shows the difference between

the results of 2.414 GHz and 870 MHz, represented by dots.

For simulations up to 90 m, the difference between frequencies

obtained from (10) is given by

(continuous line), which follows the linear fit of the measured

results very closely. The average of is 0.11 for the measured

results and 0.12 for the simulated ones, implying a higher decay

for higher frequencies.

Fig. 9. Parameter x

TABLE IV

STANDARD DEVIATIONS OF THE ESTIMATION OF P L(d )

for the two frequencies can be visualized in Fig. 10(b). From

. This

simulations this is obtained as

the difference is equivalent to the free

means that for

.

space attenuation and it increases with the increasing of

The average difference is 9.7 dB for measured results and 9.8 dB

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ANTENNAS AND PROPAGATION, VOL. 59, NO. 6, JUNE 2011

(17)

Fig. 11 shows the relation between the excess attenuation

and the frequency for

. For comparison, the results

obtained from Weissberger and FITU-R out-of-leaf models are

also represented.

The previous expressions are valid up to distances of 400 m

and for frequencies from 300 MHz to 30 GHz.

Fig. 10. Difference between frequencies: (a) parameter

P L(d ).

n.

(b) Parameter

for the free space, the extra difference is on average 0.9 dB.

It may be noted that there are several published empirical

models for the relation between attenuation and frequency.

Since those models do not provide a relation between attenuation and tree density, it can be considered an average result.

From Fig. 1, the Weissberger and the FITU-R out-of-leaf

models seem to be suitable to be compared with results of the

present work due to its evolution with the distance.

Equation (11) was simplified to develop appropriate expressions for the parameters of the log-normal model.

From Fig. 8(a), the difference between the curves is only

on average 0.01 and both curves can be replaced by

. From Fig. 8(b), both curves

tend to have the same evolution for distances above 80 m,

, with

for 870

giving

MHz and

for 2.414 GHz.

, Fig. 9 shows that both lines

For the parameter

have the same slope. Equation (14) can be defined by

, with

for 870 MHz and

for 2.414 GHz.

to the freTo obtain expressions to relate and

quency, appropriate curves were determined to pass through

and . These curves follow a tendency that is controlled by

the relationship between attenuation and frequency, given by

published empirical models. From this study, the expressions

for the parameters of the log-normal model become,

V. RESULTS

The log-normal model, with the parameters defined by (10)

and (12), was applied to the measurements used to develop the

model. Free space attenuation was considered for distances

below the one given by (16). For the twenty different places

previously considered, the average differences between simulated and measured results were determined. The standard

deviation for this difference is 2.6 dB for both frequencies. To

evaluate this difference, the measurement sets that produced

differences higher than the standard deviation were identified.

Three places are in this situation with results between 4 and 7

dB. As previously mentioned, this occurs when several trees

around the transmitter obstruct the transmitted signal.

A study was also performed for measurements carried out

behind trees. This may be important, for instance, for wireless

sensor network deployment applications when some nodes are

hidden behind trees. Using the data of 25 positions, for both frequencies, the average level behind trees is around 6 dB below

the average of the received signal. The standard deviation for

this difference is 4 and 5 dB for 870 MHz and 2.414 GHz, respectively.

To evaluate the additional attenuation produced by the transmitter immediately blocked by a trunk, some other experiments

were performed. The transmitter was placed near a trunk and the

additional attenuation was determined for the rotation of the receiver around the tree. The transmitter and the receiver antennas

are 3 m above the ground. As represented on top of Fig. 12, the

received signal was obtained at angles of 30 and for three distances to the transmitter: 5 m, 20 m and 40 m. Fig. 12 shows

the results for the 2.414 GHz frequency. The continuous lines

indicate the measurements performed in a typical situation of

a tree in a forest, surrounded by other trees. In this case, the

higher additional attenuation occurs for the distance of 5 m. For

the other distances from the transmitter the results are similar

2365

Fig. 12. Attenuation produced by trunk for rotation of the receiver for 2.414

GHz.

provided by other trees. For an environment with a single tree

the additional attenuation is higher and is less dependent on the

distance, as can be seen in Fig. 12 by the dashed lines. Similar results were obtained for 870 MHz. Therefore, for transmitters placed near trunks, an additional attenuation of about 15

dB must be considered for obstructed directions. This attenuation may be higher for small distances from the transmitter or

for environments without other trees. Another experiment was

performed with the transmitter at different distances from the

trunk and for a tree surrounded by other ones. In this case, the

additional attenuation is reduced by about 10 dB at one meter

from the transmitter to the trunk. After that, the additional attenuation decreases more slowly.

In addition to the measurements carried out to develop the

empirical model, other measurements were performed to test

the model. This includes places where the forest has a great variability in the tree density. Even in these cases, the model follows

the measurements quite well. Fig. 13(a) shows the measureand 9 cm of

ments for a eucalyptus zone, with 0.65

.

average diameter of trunks. The density parameter is

The parameters of the model for 870 MHz, calculated by (10)to

and

. This is represented

(14), are

and

in Fig. 13(a) by the dashed line. For 2.414 GHz,

are obtained, represented in Fig. 13(a) by

the continuous line. The average difference between simulated

and measured results is 2.4 dB for 870 MHz and 0.4 dB for

2.414 GHz. Fig. 13(b) shows the measurements for a cedar and

and 60 cm of average diameter

pine zone, with 0.043

. This place is very irregular. For

of trunks, giving

distances up to 40 m cedar trees dominate and after that appears

a pine tree zone. For distances between 45 m and 55 m and between 65 m and 80 m there are open spaces without trees. For

distances around 90 m the tree density is very high. Applying

and

are obthe proposed model,

and

tained for 870 MHz, and

for 2.414 GHz. It is interesting to note that even in this case the

model follows the average of the measurements.

Fig. 13. Comparison between measurements and obtained by the model. (a)

VD

: ,d

. (b) V D

.

: ,d

= 5 9 = 90 m

= 2 6 = 100 m

for measurements carried out with a XBee sensor node at 2.7

m above the ground. For the pine forest and for small distances

from the transmitter, the estimated attenuation is higher than the

one obtained from the measurements. However, the estimation

of the attenuation for higher distances is very good. The difference between the simulated and the measured results at the

cryptomeria forest has 0.6 dB of average error.

The model was also tested for other frequencies and it was

compared with other methods. Due to the lack of measurements

at trunk level and for different frequencies, two comparisons

were performed. The first one considers a frequency of 15 GHz,

providing to test the model for higher frequencies. The second

comparison was performed at 1.8 GHz and for a distance of 300

m, allowing the evaluation of the model for longer distances.

Chen and Kuo [9] performed measurements at 1, 5, 10, and 15

and 34 cm of avGHz in an environment with 0.043

erage diameter of trunks. The transmitter and the receiver were

at 1.5 m above the ground. Fig. 14 shows the results for 15

GHz, represented by dots, after including the free space loss.

and

For 15 GHz and distances up to 100 m, from (17),

are obtained. With these parameters, the

log-normal model gives the result represented in Fig. 14 by the

continuous line. The average difference between the simulated

and measured results is 1.6 dB, with 5.6 dB of standard deviation. The results for the empirical model developed by Chen and

Kuo are represented by a dashed line. The average difference

between simulation and measurements is 3.8 dB with 3.1 dB of

standard deviation. Also for comparison, the Weissberger model

is represented by a dotted line. The proposed method provides

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IEEE TRANSACTIONS ON ANTENNAS AND PROPAGATION, VOL. 59, NO. 6, JUNE 2011

type and vegetation density. The attenuation is also very dependent on the position of the transmitter.

VI. CONCLUSION

estimate signal attenuation levels produced by vegetation for

systems operating inside forests. Since in this case the antennas

are at few meters above ground and at relatively small distances,

the propagation path is mainly influenced by trunks.

The model is based on log-normal decay and the corresponding parameters were determined using data from a large

measurement campaign performed in several different locations. In contrast with most well-known empirical models, the

deduced expressions include a vegetation density parameter

enabling estimations of the path loss for different forest environments. The effects of obstruction produced by trunks were

also studied and an additional attenuation must be considered

in such cases. Although dealing with two frequency band measurements, the model was generalized for other frequencies.

ACKNOWLEDGMENT

The authors wish to thank to C. Santos, J. Agrela, T. Braga,

and T. Sousa for the collaboration with the measurements, and

to Dr. I. Oakley for his help with the text.

REFERENCES

the Chen and Kuo model. It may be noted that Chen and Kuo

have developed their model with measurements performed for

the above mentioned vegetation density.

Another example consists of measurements carried out at 1.8

GHz [14]. For the transmitter and the receiver at 3 and 1.5

m above the ground, respectively, the measurements were perand 40 cm of average diformed in a zone with 0.032

ameter of trunks. The results are represented in Fig. 15 by dots.

For 1.8 GHz and distances until 300 m, from (17),

and

are obtained. Fig. 15 shows the result for the log-normal model represented by a continuous line

and the average error between simulated and measured results

is 1.1 dB with 5.8 dB of standard deviation. A comparison with

other models is also performed and the results are represented in

Fig. 15. The model that produces a smaller error is the LITU-R

model since it was developed to follow data for higher distances. However, the average difference between simulated and

measured results is 7.6 dB, with 7.8 of standard deviation, producing a higher estimation error when compared with the proposed model. As may be noticed from [11], the diffraction over

treetop considered in the LITU-R model is only important for

low frequencies and high distances from the transmitter. The errors produced by the other models are very high.

Although developed for the trunk level, the model was applied to environments with tree crowns in the propagation path.

Several measurement sets were carried out to test this situation.

The results revealed a higher attenuation in comparison with the

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and modelling in vegetation media at 11.2 and 20 GHz, Electron. Lett.,

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through rain forests of India, IEEE Trans. Antennas Propag., vol. 38,

pp. 433449, Apr. 1990.

[19] F. Wang and K. Sarabandi, A physics-based statistical model for wave

propagation through foliage, IEEE Trans. Antennas Propag., vol. 55,

pp. 958968, Mar. 2007.

[20] J. D. Parsons, The Mobile Radio Propagation Channel. Chichester,

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2nd ed. Englewood Cliffs, NJ: Prentice-Hall, 2002.

Joaquim A. R. Azevedo was born in 1966. He

studied electrical engineering and received the Engineering degree, the Master degree, and the Ph.D.

degree in telecommunications from the Universities

of Oporto and Algarve, in 1990, 1994, and 2001,

respectively.

Currently, he is teaching subjects in the areas

of signal processing, propagation, antennas and

telecommunications at the Exact Sciences and

Engineering Centre, University of Madeira, Portugal. His major fields of interest are unification of

2367

propagation models and wireless sensor networks.

Dr. Azevedo is a member of the Engineering Order and he is also member of

the CCM, a Government Research Unit.

Filipe E. S. Santos was born in 1981. He studied systems and computers engineering with specialization

in telecommunications at the University of Madeira,

Portugal, where he received an Engineering degree in

2004 and the Master degree in telecommunications

and networks in 2010.

Currently, he is working at the Exact Sciences

and Engineering Centre, University of Madeira.

His major fields of interest are microelectronics,

automation, and wireless sensor networks

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