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Huawei, NTT Docomo achieve breakthrough in 5G field trial

By Edith Mutethya | chinadaily.com.cn | Updated: 2017-12-20 10:39

A worker adjusts the logo at the stand of Huawei at the CeBIT trade fair in Hanover, March 15, 2015.[Photo/Agencies]

Huawei, a Chinese telecommunications giant, and NTT Docomo Inc, Japan's largest telecommunications company, have successfully completed a joint field trial for 5G mobile communications over a long distance with 39 GHz Millimeter Wave (mmWave) band in Yokohama, one of the largest commercial areas in Japan.

In the trial, the downlink data transmissions were recorded at a maximum speed of over 2 Gbps on a testing vehicle equipped with a user equipment (UE), equivalent to a mobile phone, while driving at over 20 kilometers per hour.

This successful trial opens up a new door for applications and deployments of 5G mmWave.

Long-distance mobility transmission over 5GmmWave is one of the enabling technologies to realize 5G enhanced Mobile Broadband (eMBB) and ubiquitous connectivity of massive data rate while fully leveraging the current macro-cellular sites investment by operators.

Takehiro Nakamura, the vice-president and managing director of 5G Laboratory at NTT DOCOMO said, long-distance transmission over 39GHzmmWave will enable 5G network deployments on a large scale.

"It opens up the new stage of the 39GHz mmWave technology and will deliver the ultra-fast experience with 5G high data speed," he said.

Wen Tong, Huawei fellow and CTO of Huawei Wireless Networks, said it's a technological challenge and opportunity to use the long-distance transmission of 5G mmWave Mobile Communications technology.

The wireless industry, he said will start using the new spectrum 100 times broader than current network to foster next wave of innovations.

"The 5G mmWave technology will help our customers to reuse the existing network infrastructure, especially for sites resource, to protect their investment. Huawei will continue to innovate to make 5G mmWave a success," Wen said.

Achieving wide area coverage and mobility performance on 5G mmWave is still a technological challenge for 5G industry. High propagation loss of mmWave signals limits its coverage, while narrow directional beam required to focus the transmission power makes the mmWave beam to track the mobile device, becoming more difficult.

The joint field trial conduced in November 2017 successfully demonstrated that 39GHz mmWave can be used for the long-distance transmission in both stationary and mobility scenarios even in urban complex deployment environments.

The partners recorded over 3 Gbps downlink throughput on the stationary user equipment (UE) at a distance of 1.5 km and over 2 Gbps at a distance of 1.8 km on 39GHz mmWave.

The trial has validated and proved the effectiveness of two companies' mmWave technologies to provide range of 5G services which require wide area coverage.

The test system was made up of one base station on Yokohama Media Tower that works on the 39GHz band and an UE on a testing vehicle.

This trial boasted the innovative materials based compact focal lens antenna with advanced beam forming (maximum gain of 31 dBi) technique to concentrate the radio waves in a certain direction to enable long-distance transmission.

The advanced beam tracking technique is employed to trackUE on a testing vehicle travelling at speeds of over 20 km per hour. This is the industry-first filed trial to verify the long-distance mmWave transmission for mobility application in macro-cell coverage scenarios.

The invented mmWave beam processing algorithms are used to allow the best beam selection, fast beam tracking, and fast beam switching for the best performance for mobile terminal. Moving at about 25 km per hour, the terminal user experienced the high-speed transmission and stable throughput.

Huawei and Docomo jointly worked on the 5G innovation and successfully conducted a series of large-scale field trials since December 2014. Currently, the developments of 5G have entered a new era, with the first version of 3GPP 5G standard of Release-15 expected to be completed in 2018. The industry is thus entering the 5G pre-commercial stage.

"Huawei will continue to work on research and development of mobile communications technologies in cooperation with partners around the world to offer new services that utilize 5G in diverse scenarios for 2020 and beyond," Wen said.

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