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MIMO active array antenna unveiled for mobile broadband coverage

Posted: 18 Feb 2011 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:MIMO? mobile broadband coverage? network providers?

Powerwave Technologies has unveiled a MIMO active array antenna as part of its Inside Out Solutions network strategy. The product supports a wide variety of protocols including CDMA, WCDMA, HSPA+, WiMAX and LTE.

The antenna combines a remote radio head and antenna technologies into a single design with a 3 to 5dB link budget that doubles a basestation's coverage radius when compared to non-integrated antennas. According to Powerwave, the antenna's integrated design makes it more cost-effective. Moreover, it has the same height, width and front windloading as a conventional antenna, enabling like-for-like swapping of existing tower infrastructure. The antenna supports 3G and 4G deployments, in frequency bands from 700MHz to 2.7GHz. Upgrades to 4G protocols should come at little or no cost, claims Powerwave, because no modifications to the tower-top active array antenna are necessary.

"While 3G and 4G networks provide the increased data rates needed for today's mobile devices, they also lead to cell shrinkage that results in pockets of poor reception within the radius of the tower," said Khurram Sheikh, chief technical officer at Powerwave. "The increased coverage and high performance data speed at cell edge offered by Powerwave's MIMO Active Array Antenna provides the performance needed to solve the widening gap between mobile data traffic and bandwidth capacity, delivering significantly improved signal quality to customers."

The MIMO active array antenna is integrated into a single radome containing all the subsystems necessary to deploy the complete 3G or 4G BTS RF up the tower, and this all-in-one design is expected to reduce tower lease costs. It is lightweight at less than 20kg and can be installed by one person.

Powerwave is currently holding trials of the antenna and will begin selling it in the third quarter of the year.

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