Monday, May 05, 2014

New Book - RFPS (Radio Frequency Propagation Survey)

Joe Hoy from Forensic Analytics joins us this month at Cell Site Analysis blog to outline the purpose and content for his forthcoming book regarding  RFPS (Radio Frequency Propagation Survey).

What is your background, Joe?
"I am a telecoms engineer and trainer with 27 years of industry experience. For the last 17 years I have concentrated on telecoms training, specialising in cellular technologies particularly, for the past few years, 4G LTE.

"I have also worked extensively as a forensic cell site analyst and expert witness, contributing to many high-profile cases for either the prosecution or the defence. I’ve undertaken the work of the RFPS surveyor, capturing measurements of cellular coverage at crime scenes and other locations and have also provided extensive training for cell site analysts and RFPS engineers.

What is your current employment?
 "I now run a company called Forensic Analytics, we develop and supply software tools, such as our CSAS (Cell Site Analysis Suite) tool, to police forces and cell site analysis companies to aid them in processing call data records and RF survey results and also help them to effectively analyse, query, visualise and present that data. Traditionally, cell site analysis and their attendant forensic radio surveys were undertaken by external cell site experts, but there has been a growing trend, in the UK but also elsewhere, for law enforcement agencies to reduce the cost of forensic cell site investigations by taking some or all of the survey work ‘in house’.

Who are the potnetial readers of your book and why? 
"Many police forces now employ their own radio surveyors who undertake radio surveys for them – although there are many experienced radio engineers included in this set, in many cases the people being employed to perform these tasks are investigators and do not come from a cellular radio engineering background. Their understanding of the background of the role can therefore be somewhat limited and their technical understanding of the operation of the networks they are surveying may benefit from additional enhancement.

"In light of this, I have been asked by John Wiley Sons, the technical book publisher, to write a book that outlines the theory and practice related to the RFPS (Radio Frequency Propagation Survey) discipline within the field of cell site analysis.

Can you provide CSA blog readers with a brief outline of the content of the book
 "The first half of the book provides a reasonably simple but nonetheless detailed overview of radio theory, of basic cellular network principles and concepts and of the operation of cellular networks. The radio theory section provides an introduction to basic radio theory and offers simple explanations of the mathematical concepts that underlie radio measurements scales such as dB and dBm. The network types section is mainly focused on 3GPP network types – GSM, UMTS and LTE – but also provides an overview of the operation of other network types, such as 3GPP2 cdmaOne/CDMA2000/EV-DO, Chinese TD-SCDMA, WMIAX, WiFi, iDEN, TETRA and others.

"One of the main aims of the first half of the book is to introduce new surveyors to enough fundamental concepts to enable them to understand the meaning and significance of the measurements they will capture during surveys. It also provides details of the specific types of measurement that are captured for each network type and gives an idea of the typical range of values to be expected.

"The second half of the book focuses on forensic radio surveys; the various types of survey, the techniques employed for each survey type, the considerations and potential problems that can be encountered when surveying different types of network.

"This book is intended to be used as both a text book and as an aide memoire handbook by forensic radio survey engineers, particularly those working for official police agencies. It is not intended to act as a detailed technical reference for cell site experts or others who already understand these topics.

Which markets would benefit from your book?
"There is a growing market for cell site analysis in general. The UK has largely pioneered this area of forensic activity and has an experienced and mature market but the market in other parts of the world is still developing. Many countries use cell site techniques but base their conclusions purely on the proximity of a cell to a significant location. This isn’t ‘proof’ in an empirical sense and this type of cell site evidence is subject to challenge and dismissal in court. As cell site markets and techniques mature in other countries there will be a need for proper RFPS evidence and therefore, I hope, a growing market for the information provided in this book.

When will your book be available and how do readers get hold of a copy?
 "The book is due to be published by Wiley in the Autumn, but for further details please contact me at For details of our CSAS tool go to"

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