Snowy tower overlooking mountains

Ice Shields

Snowy tower overlooking mountains

Ice shields protect your network from winter weather.

The ice, snow and freezing rain of winter storms can affect the performance of your microwave network. Falling ice can knock your equipment out of alignment and damage cabling or microwave dishes—costing up to $25,000 for a dish replacement. Accidents like this can disrupt your business operations and potentially leave your network in the dark.

Damaged microwave dish

Source: Midwest Underground Technology

With the critical nature of your data, preemptive winterization efforts will help to reinforce your network and prevent damage from winter weather. Consider implementing the following measures to protect your microwave data path.

Microwave dish shields:

  • Protect microwave dishes from ice that falls from platforms and equipment located higher up on the tower.
  • Are recommended for installations where the dish is located 50 feet or more from the top of the tower. Equipment located within the top 50 feet can still create ice problems, but typically there isn’t enough space to gain momentum and cause large-scale damage.
  • Require only 2 - 4 feet of space above the dish for installation.

Microwave dish shields

Source: CommScope

Waveguide shields:

  • Protect waveguides and cabling from falling ice.
  • Are recommended for all installations and heights in regions where ice accumulates.
  • Are relatively low cost, do not take up tower space and protect the most vulnerable part of the installation.

American Tower recommends the CommScope® MD-IS4 or equivalent due to the ability to make adjustments in the field.

Waveguide shields

Source: CommScope
CommScope is a registered trademark of CommScope, Inc.