NEC Teams with BT and EE to Test 5G mmWave, and NTT DOCOMO in 5G Massive MIMO Trial

Introduces Wireless Transport Solution with AI Analytics for the 5G era at MWC 2017

NEC Corporation (TSE: 6701), BT and EE will work with the University of Salford as a research partner to undertake the most thorough testing yet into the performance of vital millimetre wave mobile backhaul technology for 4G and 5G networks.

With smaller cell sites set to play an integral role in meeting the capacity, latency and throughput requirements of future 4G and 5G networks, mobile backhaul is a growing challenge.

To meet this challenge, NEC, BT and EE have teamed up to test the performance of V-band point-to-point mobile backhaul, using millimetre wave spectrum in the 60GHz band. The test will focus largely on how these links may stand up to the rigours of the British weather.

Using the University of Salford as a base, the companies have created a test bed to measure the performance of the V-band radio system over a 12-month period when exposed to rain, wind, fog and ice. The University has installed a radio system complete with transceivers and antennas on the Newton Science and Engineering building and the Maxwell Building at its Peel Park Campus and will monitor transmissions at the test site from now until early 2018.

“This will be one of the most detailed tests of this type done anywhere in the world to date, so we are delighted it will be hosted in Salford with our partners NEC, BT and EE,” explained Nigel Linge, professor of telecommunications, University of Salford.

“Millimetre wave point to point links operate at very high frequencies to transmit high volumes of data over relatively short distances. However, the high frequency does mean that it is possibly affected by climatic conditions – the question being by how much. This is a vital technology for the future of 4G and 5G networks, so this research can play a major part in influencing deployment in years to come.”

Stephen Walthew, Manager – Transport Networks at NEC Europe, said Salford was a perfect choice for the testing: “We were looking for an urban area, somewhere the weather is very variable and where there is expertise in network engineering. Given our long-standing relationship with Professor Linge and his colleagues, we are delighted the University of Salford can host the tests.

“The 60GHz connection has the opportunity to become the solution of choice for high capacity backhauling, so the more scientific evidence we can collect about its performance, the better we can make decisions about design and deployment.”

Professor Andy Sutton, Principal Network Architect at BT, said, “V-band radio systems have great potential as a backhaul solution for small cells within a heterogeneous network. We are delighted to be cooperating with NEC and the University of Salford to validate the achievable network performance of this exciting technology in a real-world environment.

“This is the most extensive testing we’ve ever undertaken. Having a full year’s worth of results against a diverse range of weather and atmospheric conditions will provide a critical input to our future network strategy and architecture.”

NEC Introduces Wireless Transport Solution with AI Analytics for the 5G era
TOKYO, Feb 21, 2017 – (JCN Newswire) – NEC Corporation (TSE: 6701) today announced the global availability of its “Smart Wireless Transport Network” (Smart WTN) solution for resolving bottlenecks in the mobile backhaul for 5G networks, featuring a high capacity pipe for dynamic network optimization.

The Smart WTN combines NEC’s iPASOLINK EX, an ultra-compact radio communication system that achieves wireless transmission capacity of 10Gbps in the E-band range, with a Backhaul Resource Manager (BRM) SDN controller that dynamically controls both wired and wireless networks, as well as NEC’s widely deployed Artificial Intelligence (AI) technology, “NEC the WISE”(1). As a result, it is able to provide seamless migration for projects ranging from small first-time deployments to advanced large-scale deployments utilizing state-of-the-art AI.

In order to accommodate high speed communications and the IoT, it is necessary to accelerate adoption of small cells and expand the capacity of mobile backhaul that connects cell sites. This is in addition to maintaining legacy macro cells. The Smart WTN solution enables flexible network build-out, makes valid traffic and defect predictions, adapts to environmental and behavioral changes accordingly, and dynamically modifies operations in order to improve efficiency and minimize power consumption.

“NEC offers dynamic and intelligent transport networks for telecom carriers, enabling them to provide the best user experience for their customers,” said, Atsushi Noro, General Manager, Mobile Wireless Solutions Division, NEC Corporation. “Based on our global deployment of reliable mobile infrastructure with the NEC PASOLINK series, NEC is able to provide optimized solutions for 5G that integrate best-of-breed products from a wide variety of vendors and disciplines.’

NEC will issue a whitepaper illustrating this solution, and showcase the concept during Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2017 at the Fira Gran Via, Barcelona, from February 27 to March 2, in Hall 3, stand #3M30.


NEC and NTT DOCOMO Conduct 5G Base Station Verification Trials of Massive MIMO Technology

– Achieved spectral efficiency eight times higher than that of LTE –

TOKYO, Feb 20, 2017 – (JCN Newswire) – NEC Corporation (TSE: 6701) today announced that it has completed joint verification trials with NTT DOCOMO, Inc. using Massive Multiple Input Multiple Output (MIMO), a core technology for 5G base stations. The trials were conducted in central Tokyo and Kanagawa Prefecture, and used NEC’s massive-element Active Antenna System (AAS) supporting the low-SHF band(1).

The trials employed the low-SHF band-compatible AAS in the base station for both outdoor environments, where radio waves are reflected or diffracted due to buildings, utility poles, vehicles and people, and indoor environments, which also include many obstacles, such as columns and walls.

NEC’s AAS adopts fully-digitized antenna beam control technology, which improves the precision of beam forming. While transmitting beams to the target mobile handsets, it is capable of forming beams that counteract interfering signals using the multi-path(2). It can also form beams that improve communication quality by efficiently combining the multi-path of its own signals with the direct waves.

The features of NEC’s AAS enable concurrent communication with several handsets, even though they are close to each other, while maintaining high communication quality. In the trials, NEC proved that use of the AAS can result in improved capacity and quality of communication between a base station and handsets, while confirming that spectral efficiency was reliably maintained at a level roughly eight times higher than that achieved by LTE in indoor environments.(3)

“Thanks to NEC’s contribution on the massive-element AAS supporting the low-SHF band, we were able to achieve highly successful outcomes from the trials,” said Takehiro Nakamura, Managing Director of the 5G Laboratory at NTT DOCOMO, INC. “We expect NEC to continue pursuing high-speed, large-capacity communication using the low-SFH band and contributing to our commercialization of 5G.”

“NEC research into core technologies for 5G, including the massive-element AAS and antenna beam control, will contribute to the successful roll-out of 5G in the near future. Among the high frequency bands, we are working especially hard to put the low-SHF band into practical use, since it is expected to enter into commercial use around 2020,” said Nozomu Watanabe, General Manager, Mobile Radio Access Network Division, NEC Corporation. “We will capitalize on the results of these trials as we continue to work together with NTT DOCOMO and other communication carriers, aiming at the practical application of 5G.”

This press release includes a part of results of “The research and development project for realization of the fifth-generation mobile communications system” commissioned by The Ministry of Internal Affairs and Communications, Japan.

(1) Super High Frequency band: Radio waves with wavelengths from one to ten centimeters that fall within the microwave band with frequencies from 3GHz to 30GHz. Low-SHF refers to radio waves at frequencies of 3GHz to 6GHz.
(2) Signals other than direct waves, such as signals that are reflected or differed due to columns, buildings and other obstacles.
(3)Comparing with 2 spatial multiplexing in LTE, as of February 20, 2017, based on NEC research.