Active Antennas with multiple tilt support mixed LTE and GSM networks

2 min read MSPs
Ubidyne has published a White Paper ‘LTE implementation into an Existing GSM 1800 Network Using Active Antenna Systems'.

With the increasing move to introduce LTE into existing GSM networks, particularly in the 1800 MHz band 3, Active Antenna Systems (AAS) allow operators to optimize their networks for both standards and deliver major CAPEX and OPEX savings, claims Ubidyne. Unlike conventional fixed passive antennas, AAS solutions have features such as tilt-per-standard/carrier that enable completely separate tilts for each standard or carrier transmitted and received with the antenna. The result is that operators need to upgrade 24% fewer sites to roll out LTE or can deliver a higher network capacity by upgrading all sites, compared to a network using only passive antennas.

Ubidyne will also be exhibiting at CommunicAsia2012 in Singapore from 19th to 22nd of June.

“Due to the very different characteristics of LTE and GSM, operators face major network roll out and optimization issues if they have to deliver both services on their existing GSM sites,” said Michael Fränkle, CEO of Ubidyne, a leading developer of dynamic digital active antenna technology for wireless communications. “Less LTE upgrades in the initial roll-out phase mean lower up-front investment, as well as lower operating expenses because of reduced maintenance and power requirements; and once capacity demand for LTE increases, the remaining GSM-only sites can be upgraded to provide higher capacity for customers. Because this multi-standard feature has only been available with the advent of AAS, it is still often overlooked when planning a network upgrade.”

While the Ubidyne paper only covers the benefit of tilt-per-standard/carrier, higher gain can be achieved by additional features including vertical sectorization that creates separate inner and outer cells if users are grouped towards the cell center and cell edge; as well as separate Rx/Tx tilt so that receive and transmit beams can be shaped and tilted independently to reduce interference with neighboring cells, for example. A self-healing capability also provides built-in redundancy by being able to dynamically compensate if one or more transceiver elements fail, thus expending the antenna’s MTBF and reducing OPEX costs for the operator.

These benefits were clearly demonstrated in recent US trials with a leading Tier 1 operator where Ubidyne’s 700MHz Active Antenna Embedded Radio technology delivered double throughput at the cell edge and an increase of over 40% cell capacity with the same output power.

“While LTE can be deployed in a large range of frequency bands ranging from 700/800MHz to 1800MHz (band 3), 2100MHz and 2600MHz, the 1800MHz band is available to a large number of operators around the world; and in most cases there is enough bandwidth to make it possible to reduce GSM and introduce LTE in the freed-up bandwidth,” said Ubidyne’s Fränkle. “Ubidyne’s AAS solutions will play a major role in helping OEMs, integrators and operators to meet the challenges of supporting of LTE in multi-standard and multi-carrier environments.”