Solutions to deploy and maintain 5G and IoT networks at scale
As service providers worldwide continue building out 5G and IoT networks at an accelerated pace, Viavi Solutions (VIAVI) is delivering enhanced test instruments, automation and monitoring to enable customers to manage network complexity, meet performance targets and minimise cost.
Enzo Dalmazzo, Senior Director, Converged Instruments and Virtual Test, VIAVI, said: “The mobile communications industry is in the midst of unprecedented transformation, with standards bodies still finalising 5G core specifications while carriers are rolling out radio access networks around the globe.
“VIAVI has enabled leading network equipment manufacturers and service providers to validate 5G base stations in the lab, and supported field technicians as they’ve installed and verified initial network deployments. Now we’re introducing the next level of solutions to help them grow their footprints, from single instruments to manage multiple generations of technology, to antenna alignment tools addressing the unique requirements of 5G and IoT.”
Since its introduction, the CellAdvisor 5G base station analyser has been used by Tier-1 service providers around the globe to verify 5G NR functionality and performance in the field. Now, VIAVI has expanded the capabilities of this trusted solution to enable RF engineers and cell-site technicians to efficiently deploy and maintain 3G, 4G LTE, LTE-Advanced and 5G cell sites with a single instrument.
Enhancements include: LTE/LTE-A FDD and TDD signal analyser functions; cable and antenna analyser modules; and support for the VIAVI 4100 series of OTDR modules. The CellAdvisor 5G solution eliminates the need for field workforces to carry separate instruments to validate 5G, fibre, coaxial cables and antennas.
3Z IoA – IoT for antennas
As 5G and IoT networks utilise a far broader range of frequency bands than previous generations, and employ more sophisticated technologies such as small cells and massive MIMO beamforming, antenna alignment becomes vital to network performance. Minor obstructions can render cells unusable, and can occur after antenna installation.
3Z Telecom has introduced IoA – IoT for Antennas, cloud-enabled remote monitoring of alignment sensors attached to antennas, detecting and reporting alignment changes in three dimensions – azimuth, down-tilt and roll – in real time.
One of the biggest challenges facing NEMs and service providers as they launch 5G is validating network performance against continually changing and maturing 3GPP specs, with services, core and RAN elements from different suppliers. The VIAVI RANtoCore portfolio provides end-to-end agnostic network testing, mitigating these challenges in the lab, and building confidence that 5G and 4G services can run concurrently.
The TM500 Network Tester can emulate thousands of 5G and 4G UEs simultaneously, including low-complexity IoT devices and unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs). TeraVM Core Test and TeraVM Core Emulator enable complete, end-to-end 5G NSA and SA base station and core network testing and validation, simplifying the development lifecycle of gNodeB (gNB) base stations and associated core nodes such as UPF for a more agile, 3GPP-compliant network, supporting the shift of core functionality to the network edge.
TeraVM also offers 5G core testing at scale – emulating tens of thousands of 5G gNodeBs, over four million users with 200 Gbps throughput, all registered in under one minute.
Fiber test for 5G
5G is not only driving more fibre to radios, it is also driving a higher order of multiplexing on limited fibre links. Service providers will need to choose from a multitude of deployment options for 5G fronthaul, based on asset deployment cost, use cases and technology – including dark fibre, passive WDM, WDM-PON or Time Sensitive Network (TSN) based Ethernet switching.
VIAVI will showcase its leading portfolio of fibre inspection and test instruments, including the FiberChek Sidewinder and SmartClass Fiber MPOLx, which combine ease of use, speed of test and automation to improve field technician and contractor efficiency even as networks get more complex.