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EU project boosts mobile capacity tenfold

Alvarion demonstrates ultra-dense small cell platform to push towards gigabit networks at affordable cost

By CAROLINE GABRIEL

Published: 27 September, 2012

READ MORE: Spectrum | Europe | Standards | LTE

The constant quest of the mobile industry is to pack more capacity into the network, especially in urban areas. One effort is the European Commission-backed BuNGee Project, which has completed its work, led by Alvarion.

A group of companies and institutions held a demonstration of the framework in Tel Aviv, Israel in April and the project has now had its final EC review. Its main goals were to boost the overall infrastructure density of the mobile network tenfold, at a commercially viable cost.


Alister Burr, professor of communications at the University of York, UK, said: "The demonstration and the completion of the project mark a very significant step forward in the implementation of next generation wireless networks."

The demonstration, in an urban area around Alvarion's offices, achieved throughput of 1Gbps per square kilometer, compared to 100Mbps for LTE or WiMAX. The framework used was designed to take several concepts currently gaining popularity in RAN design, such as small cells and HetNet, and push them to the next stage.

Key elements were ultra-dense meshes of small cells below rooftop level; and highly integrated access and backhaul, using in-band and millimeter wave backhaul, and a combination of licensed and unlicensed spectrum. Also important were advanced antenna technologies including multibeam antenna assisted MIMO, to boost capacity and reduce interference; cognitive base station radios; and various self-managing resources.

"Viewing the live demonstration at Alvarion's office in April was the necessary proof point for the successful close to this project," said project coordinator Oleg Marinchenco, from Alvarion, in a statement. "With BuNGee, we have taken great steps in the implementation of next generation networks for the entire communications market."

Other members of the group included ARTTIC, Cobham Antennas Systems UK, Thales Communications and Security, backhaul specialist Siklu, operator Polska Telefonia Cyrfowa, and academic institutions in Barcelona, York and Louvain, Belgium.

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