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SoftWright Releases Terrain Analysis Package (TAP™) 7.3 RF Propagation
December 30, 2019

SoftWright, a GSA contract holder, is the developer of the Terrain Analysis Package (TAP™) PC-based terrestrial RF propagation software. TAP™ is used by federal agencies, state/local public safety departments, energy companies, utilities, and consultants to evaluate radio transmitter sites; predict, map, and analyze radio coverage; plan land mobile radio and cellular systems; conduct intermodulation and adjacent channel interference studies; and design microwave, VHF, and UHF links. TAP™ models the physical layer of communication systems – specifically, RF propagation over terrain. However, TAP™ provides straightforward study creation and visualization options to conduct a wide range of advanced wireless communication analyses, including analyses for Project 25 (P25) and TETRA systems.

SoftWright’s TAP 7 software now includes an all-new AutoPath module for network planning and analysis.  The TAP 7 AutoPath module is a transformational improvement over the legacy TAP 6 AutoPath module.  The network building, visualization, and analysis tools of the TAP 7 AutoPath module provide a completely upgraded experience for designing point-to-point networks. 

The AutoPath module allows the user to evaluate multiple path profiles simultaneously for applications ranging from simple relay networks to large scale networks including thousands of links.  Applications include SCADA systems, ring networks, smart meters, mesh / field area networks, and more.  The AutoPath module allows the user to create point-to-point networks three primary ways:

  • Fixed Facility Database:  Use facilities in the Fixed Facility database to define the start and end points of each path in the network.  Select a set of Tx Facilities and a set of Rx Facilities and TAP will automatically generate paths between all combinations of Tx and Rx Facilities.
  • Facility Spreadsheet Import: Populate spreadsheet files (same format as the TAP7 fixed facility files) and import sets of Tx facilities (e.g., base stations) and Rx facilities (e.g., remotes). TAP will automatically generate paths between all combinations of Tx and Rx facilities without adding the facilities to the Fixed Facility database.
  • Network Spreadsheet Import:  Populate a spreadsheet template with Tx and Rx information for individual paths and import the list of paths to define the AutoPath network.  The network path list can be exported and shared with another TAP 7 AutoPath user.

The next step is to select AutoPath parameters that will be familiar to current users of TAP 7 Path studies.  For example, topo data step, earth curvature, propagation model, land cover, surface features, etc.  These selections will be used for every path in the network.

Finally, choose the outputs that TAP 7 will generate when the AutoPath study is Run.  The outputs may include just tabulated field strength results or, optionally, path images or path profile reports for every path in the network. 

Click ‘Run’ and the TAP 7 Study Server window will show the study execution progress.  When the study is complete, the results may be styled based on line-of-Sight, Rx Margin, or Rx Field as selected by the user.  Switch from the Map View tab to the Path Profile View tab to see the path profile for an individual path, which may be selected by clicking on the map or selecting a row in the Results grid.

Visit www.softwright.com for more information, to watch an AutoPath tutorial video, or to download a free demo version of the latest TAP™ software.



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