Active antennas in 4G network trial

01 November 2011

CommScope has supplied the first active antennas in use in an LTE network field trial
CommScope has supplied the first active antennas in use in an LTE network field trial

CommScope has supplied the first active antennas in use in an LTE network field trial.

This is a major step towards the promise of better, more cost-effective ways to transmit broadband signals to mobile customers using next generation networks.

CommScope’s new active antennas, part of the company’s expanding portfolio of solutions for 4G wireless networks, are installed as part of a multisite LTE trial being conducted by a prominent North American wireless network operator.

Active antennas are considered to be the next stage in the evolution of cellular site architecture, in which the radio is integrated into the antenna and the radio functionality is distributed across the antenna elements. This digital architecture reduces the need for certain cell site equipment, which can reduce energy consumption, site maintenance and leasing costs.

“We believe this trial is a significant step towards the eventual wide-spread deployment of active antenna solutions in LTE networks,” said Kevin Linehan, Vice President and Chief Technology Officer for base station antennas, CommScope. “Through our 10-plus years of pioneering research and development on active antenna systems, combined with our vast experience in designing and developing advanced antenna and remote radio head systems for global operators, we think CommScope is uniquely positioned to help wireless operators experience the many benefits of the world’s first digital, antenna-integrated radio system.”

The CommScope antennas, featuring antenna-embedded radio technology developed with technology partner Ubidyne, are designed to enable mobile operators to deliver optimal wireless coverage and quality of service to subscribers while reducing capital expense and operating expense. The antennas feature Ubidyne’s modular digital circuits that attach directly to individual antenna radiators, with electronic beam-forming features that increase network capacity. Previous testing in operator networks shows that active antennas deliver the highest level of integration possible and can offer significant savings in total cost of ownership, in addition to enhancing service performance.

“CommScope has invested more than $1 billion in research and development over the past decade in order to help customers evolve to new technologies,” Linehan said. “Our active antenna and fibre feeder solutions are examples of how that investment results in valuable intellectual property and delivers tremendous benefits to our customers and the industry.”

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