Microwave Oven Interference on Wireless LANs Operating in the 2.4 GHz ISM Band Abstract – Commercial microwave ovens as applied in restaurants have two magnetron tubes and compared to domestic kitchen counterparts they spread the higher RF power and radiated heating energy more evenly. The domestic kitchen or residential microwave ovens have only one magnetron tube. The interference from the commercial type of microwave ovens is more difficult to characterise than the interference from the residential ones. The commercial type of microwave ovens radiate a CW-like interference that sweeps over tens of MHz during the two bursts per mains power cycle. The residential ones give a CW-like interference that has a more or less stable frequency near 2.45 GHz occurring once per mains power cycle. The impact of the interference from the commercial type of microwave ovens on wireless LANs conforming the IEEE 802.11 standard for both DSSS (direct sequence spread spectrum) and FHSS (frequency hopping spread spectrum) has been evaluated. I. INTRODUCTION The release of the 2.4 GHz unlicensed band (2400 -2483.5 MHz) for ISM (industrial, scientific, medical applications) prompted a significant interest in the design of wireless LAN products. Interference from extraneous sources (unintentional radiators) impacts the reliability of communication in this 2.4 GHz ISM band. Sources of such interference are the millions of residential microwave ovens radiating at frequencies close to 2.45 GHz, and they have been described largely in the literature. Commercial microwave ovens, based on two magnetron tubes as used in restaurants, have been hardly described in the literature. Since commercial ovens are expected more often in the vicinity of office buildings with a high population density of office equipment and PCs, this type has been evaluated with respect to the nature of the interference signal and the impact on wireles…
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