Posted: July 8, 2014

China Mobile has collaborated with Ericsson to adopt a wavelength division multiplexing (WDM) fiber fronthaul networking solution with the PAU 6000 product family for its first commercial deployment of a TD-LTE network, based on a centralized radio access network (C-RAN) architecture. The superior radio network performance provided by this system benefits China Mobile’s bottom line and provides its customers with a better mobile broadband experience. As a result, C-RAN and fiber fronthaul are attracting international attention with several operators conducting investigations and trials of these technologies.

Key to the successful C-RAN deployment of China Mobile’s TD-LTE C-RAN in the Qingdao Development Zone was the low capital and operational cost of the remote radio locations, which have only an outdoor antenna and the RRU [remote radio unit] without an air-conditioned cabinet. The PAU 6000 had to be as simple as ‘plug and play’ for the technicians; it had to be rugged for the outdoors and no bigger than the RRU while consuming very little power.

China Mobile’s C-RAN enables a lower total cost of ownership by centralizing baseband/main units (BBUs/MUs) into one location and through its existing fiber network and the PAU 6000, providing common public radio interface (CPRI) communication to its remote radio units located at a simplified radio site. The C-RAN based architecture with high-speed, low-latency CPRI fiber links enables tighter radio multipoint coordination for better LTE network utilization and reception.

Jan Signell, Head of Ericsson Northeast Asia, says: “Ericsson’s focus on enabling China Mobile’s desire for a cost-effective, low-power, environmentally rugged WDM networking product with high performance and fast deployment for its C-RAN initiative has led to the development of the PAU 6000 family of fiber fronthaul products.”

The PAU 6000 is ideal in fiber-rich urban areas, enabling the deployment of cost-optimized small cells for extending application coverage. The product family can also be quickly deployed in an outside environment along with the RRU for a small, very low-power footprint at the antenna location, without the need for an environmentally controlled cabinet. Not only does the PAU 6000 provide protected CPRI links up to 10Gbps in a managed ring network, but also 10Gbps Ethernet as well for Wi-Fi.

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