Tuesday, January 30, 2018

Elements of Nokia' Future X network architecture for 5G

Nokia's Future X architecture for 5G, which the company is outlining this week and plans to showcase at next month's Mobile World Congress, will combine high-capacity 5G New Radio access, core networking capabilities, and SDN controlled 'Anyhaul' transport. The new architecture promises up to three times more data capacity per cell site and 30% lower total cost of operation through the artificial intelligence-based automation.


Here are the key elements:

  • Nokia 5G New Radio - the radio software, based on the 3GPP 5G New Radio Release 15 standard. 
  • Nokia AirScale Radio Access - a modular way to build radio access networks. Nokia plans 20 new products and features with software-upgradeable radios, including ReefShark-based products, and the smallest-ever outdoor AirScale system module.
  • Nokia's 5G AirScale active antennas - optimized for mobility support, wide-area coverage, multi-gigabit throughput speeds and millisecond latency. New antenna products include AirScale massive MIMO Adaptive Antennas for 5G and LTE, a portfolio of new 5G ready radio heads, as well as a new dual-band Compact Active Antenna addressing all operator deployment scenarios.
  • Nokia's 5G Small Cells -  new 5G outdoor and indoor small cells will be compact and easily deployable and complement the 5G macro network.
  • Nokia 5G Anyhaul - the portfolio is enhanced with SDN automation capabilities and products for Microwave, IP Routing, Optical Networking, and Next Gen PON, all supporting the migration of radio access and packet core functions to cloud architectures.
  • Nokia 5G Core - Nokia cloud-native packet core supports separated control and user planes and offers both virtualized and new physical deployment capabilities, including platforms built with Nokia's FP4 processor. Nokia's 5G core supports both wireless and fixed technologies. Nokia will also launch 5G registers to enable the management of subscriptions on the 5G network.
  • Nokia Massive Scale Access - complements 5G New Radio with fiber, DSL, cable and Wireless PON solutions. The end-to-end access portfolio enables service providers to connect more people sooner, using whichever access technology best suits the use case.
  • 5G Acceleration Services -  Bell Labs Consulting in network planning, site evolution, predictive care and virtual operations 

.Nokia's ReefShark silicon cuts massive MIMO antenna size and power consumption
Nokia unveiled its ReefShark 5G chipsets for radio frequency (RF) units such as the radio used in antennas. The chipsets, which were developed in-house, significantly improve radio performance resulting in halving the size of massive MIMO antennas. Nokia says its ReefShark chipsets also reduce power consumption in baseband units by 64%, compared to current technology.

The ReefShark chipsets comprise:

  • ReefShark Digital Front End for LTE and 5G radio systems supporting massive MIMO
  • ReefShark RFIC front-end module and transceiver: massive MIMO Adaptive Antenna solution
  • ReefShark Baseband Processor: All-in-one compute heavy design, capable of supporting the massive scale requirements of 5G. This is the brain power of baseband processing.

The ReefShark chipsets for compute capacity are delivered as plug-in units for the commercially available Nokia AirScale baseband module. The new plug-in units triple throughput from 28 Gbps today to up to 84 Gbps per module. Additionally, AirScale baseband module chaining supports base station throughputs of up to 6 terabits per second. Nokia said this level of performance will allow operators to meet the huge growing densification demands and support the massive enhanced mobile broadband needs of people and devices in megacities.

Nokia also announced that it is working with 30 operators using ReefShark and will ramp up field deployments during the third quarter of 2018.

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