We’ve all had problems with WiFi signal strength. That will be a thing of the past as this simple trick lets you boost your WiFi signals and direct them to where they are actually needed. Prior research showed that placing an aluminium soda can behind your WiFi router could increase signal strength in a single direction. The new technique by researchers from Dartmouth College and Columbia University builds up on that idea.
The new research creates a virtual wall to improve WiFi signals in indoor spaces with multiple rooms. The technique works best with a 3D-printed object coated with aluminium foil, used to direct the signals towards specific areas and away from those where it is not required. Even though it works best with 3D-printed materials, the researchers say that you can accomplish the same with a cardboard.
This decreases the interference and signal-deadening effect and increases the security of your network as well by focusing the signal to certain places. “Through this single solution, we address a number of challenges that plague wireless users,” said Xia Zhou, an assistant professor of computer science at Dartmouth. “Not only do we strengthen wireless signals, we make those same signals more secure.”
This ingenious invention helps you save thousands of dollars that you would normally have to spend on antennas that you would have had to buy if you wished to improve your WiFi signal strength. You can accomplish the same task in under $40. “With a simple investment of about $35 and specifying coverage requirements, a wireless reflector can be custom-built to outperform antennae that cost thousands of dollars,”said Zhou.