Feature Article

February 27, 2014

Texas Instruments Provides Airspan Networks with Small Cell Solutions

The growth of smart mobile devices with broadband capability is forcing service providers to find new solutions to handle the enormous amount of data being transmitted in their network. This requires an infrastructure with multiple solutions to address urban regions with limited space and rural areas with too much space. Finding the right solution requires integrating different technologies to provide the right support for the number of users in each area. Airspan Networks Inc., a global provider of 4G broadband wireless systems and solutions, is collaborating with Texas Instruments (TI) to integrate its KeyStoneTM-based wireless infrastructure System-on-Chips (SoCs) with Airspan's Small Cell LTE solution, AirSynergy.

Using TI's technology, Airspan will be able to improve functionality and performance for next-generation small cell backhaul platforms with different integrated options including support for LTE relay and hybrid non-line-of-sight (NLOS) connectivity.

The TI KeyStone-based platform delivers Airspan's Software Defined Networking (SDN) solution over multiple wireless and wireline technologies for small cell backhaul. With the right SDN solution, Airspan will have next generation infrastructure of small cell backhaul products such as highly flexible Software Defined Radio (SDR), which provides multi-mode operation including LTE relay and complementary alternative wireless backhaul options. It also includes LTE-Advanced capacity enhancing features such as carrier aggregation and integration with outdoor pico cell eNB.

"We are confident that adopting TI's wireless infrastructure solutions is a game changer for Small Cell LTE deployments. The integration of wireless backhaul with the outdoor pico eNB dramatically reduces overall small cell TCO. By leveraging the advanced features that the platform can support ensures consistent quality of experience as a user moves between macro and pico RAN layers," said Paul Senior, CTO, Airspan.

TI's TMS320C66x digital signal processor (DSP) generation core is part of the KeyStone SoC architecture. It is optimized for many high-performance markets including communications & networking, industrial automation, medical imaging, mission critical, video infrastructure and high-performance computing. Some of the key features include:

  • Highly flexible and scalable NLOS backhaul solution;
  • Low power – Meets Power over Ethernet Plus (PoE+) budget in many applications;
  • Complete System on a Chip (SoC) for layer 1, 2, and 3 protocol support;
  • Full suite of wireless PHY and Digital Radio Front End (DRFE) accelerators required for most wireless protocols;
  • Significantly reducing the processor loading;
  • Full support for Digital up/down conversion (DDUC), QAM-256, encoding/ decoding modulation;
  • Crest Factor Reduction (CFR), Digital Pre-Distortion (DPD) to allow more efficient and cost-effective power amplifiers;
  • Targeted to meet the needs of a wide range of wireless backhaul applications;
  • Six general purpose processing cores to support a wide range of Software Defined Radio (SDR) solutions.

"We are excited to be collaborating with Airspan on their next-generation AirSynergy small cell solution,” said Ruwanga Dassanayake, worldwide business manager, communications infrastructure, TI. “Airspan is generating buzz in this fast growing market with their integrated outdoor pico small cell and backhaul approach, and we look forward to seeing their small cell solution deployed in the field quickly."

Edited by Rory J. Thompson

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