06-Feb-2004 Print page

RFS completes the AISG link

Growing site optimization needs and fast-changing cellular technology mean that OEMs are looking increasingly to flexible infrastructure solutions. Now, wireless technology leader Radio Frequency Systems (RFS) has developed a portfolio of base station antenna line products offering exceptional flexibility. At the CeBIT 2004 exhibition in Hannover, RFS will unveil a complete product set compatible with the open standard of the Antenna Interface Standards Group (AISG). Freeing the end-user from the restrictions of proprietary systems, RFS’s AISG-compliant equipment opens the door to remote electrical tilt (RET) technology, and the real-time network optimization benefits this affords.

According to Patrick Nobileau, RFS Vice President Base Station Antenna Systems, the development represents a real breakthrough for RET throughout the world. “Many in the cellular industry have long been aware of the potential performance benefits and savings from RET, but had misgivings about the lack of standardization. AISG-compliance means that this issue is all but resolved. Network operators now have access to flexible RET solutions, allowing them to substantially lower the costs of system optimization,” said Nobileau.

The RFS AISG-compliant suite is an end-to-end solution, consisting of RET components, tower mounted amplifiers (TMA) and bias tees. At its heart is the Optimizer RT: an RET system that uses the RFS antenna control unit (ACU) to perform remote, and accurate, electrical tilt operations, obviating the need for direct antenna access. RFS’s AISG-compatible ACU is retro-fittable onto all RFS Optimizer antennas with variable electrical tilt.

At CeBIT 2004, RFS will also showcase its new AISG-compliant dual TMAs, designed specifically for the UMTS 2100 MHz frequency band. The TMAs not only exhibit exceptional performance, with regards to transmit insertion loss and noise figure, they feature RFS’s simple ‘hanging first and locking after’ mounting technology, and are characterized by an extremely light-weight, in-line design.

For the base-station end, RFS has launched a new AISG control network interface (CNI-P). Primarily, the interface provides connectivity between active equipment in the mast--such as the ACU and TMA--and both on-site (local PC) and off-site (LAN, WAN or the Internet) locations. Using the RFS CNI-P, not only can operators adjust antenna tilt from the network management centre, but they can also extract a wide range of manufacturing parameters, alarms and status data from all tower-mounted AISG devices. In addition, the CNI-P incorporates a power distribution unit (PDU) for supporting up to three RFS dual TMAs and nine ACUs.

Visitors to the RFS CeBIT stand will witness first-hand how AISG imparts greater flexibility in the arrangement of antenna line equipment. With RFS’s new AISG stand-alone ‘modem’ bias tees--and, in some configurations, the RFS UMTS dual TMA with its own in-built bias tee--the digital communications signal between CNI-P and antenna line systems can be seeded into the RF transmission lines themselves, eliminating the need for separate power and communications cabling.

The complete AISG RET product suite can be viewed at the RFS stand at CeBIT 2004 exhibition: Hall 27, Stand No. E35, Hannover, Germany, 18 to 24 March 2004.

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