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US multi-national network infrastructure provider CommScope is joining the fixed wireless access market with the introduction of a new integrated antenna solution based on xRAN open interface specifications. The open interface allows wireless operators to mix and match radio access network (RAN) hardware from multiple vendors to more flexibly address varying requirements.

CommScope has developed an attractive 5G radio/antenna solution that supports millimeter-wave spectrum and works on a completely virtualized baseband with an open interface. This solution integrates a beamforming active antenna array operating at 28GHz and will be available for trial with a third-party baseband platform to create a high performance and highly flexible 5G access network.

"Our integrated antenna will enable the full capabilities of 5G millimeter-wave spectrum bands while offering maximum flexibility in an evolving air-interface environment," said Farid Firouzbakht, senior vice president, RF Products, CommScope. "As a contributing member to the xRAN organization, we endorse the benefits of an open baseband interface for enabling more innovation in the wireless marketplace."

Fixed wireless access is a method for delivering broadband internet access, voice and video services to homes or businesses without a wired connection and is one of the first 5G use cases. With CommScope’s new solution, wireless operators can use commercial off-the-shelf servers to trial virtualized network functions for fixed wireless access applications. The new CommScope solution includes:

  • A base station antenna with full 120-degree beam-steering of four independent MIMO (multiple input/multiple output) ports, using a CommScope patented 256-element antenna array.
  • An integrated remote radio unit with industry-leading effective isotropic radiated power (EIRP) in a compact enclosure of less than 10 liters volume, passively cooled and optimized to fit within concealment solutions.

CommScope has also developed a sophisticated testing facility for the development of 5G related millimeter antenna technology. Located near Dallas, Texas, this automated far field anechoic testing chamber is capable of completely automated millimeter wave beamforming calibration and ready for trials of 5G massive MIMO systems.