AT&T Labs is hoping to evaluate the non-line-of-sight performance of a new integrated adaptive antenna system as part of its latest round of 5G radio testing.
According to an experimental application filed with the FCC on Tuesday, the tests would be conducted on 3.5 GHz spectrum via the use of “microwave radio and digital communications test equipment” and an integrated adaptive antenna system. AT&T said it wants to test a number of performance characteristics of the system, including data throughput, latency, error rates, availability and susceptibility to and “generation of self and external interference.”
“We hope to evaluate various performance characteristics of the system in a real world Rural/Suburban outdoor environment,” AT&T said.
The carrier said the tests would be carried out in Atlanta, Ga., and the nearby town of Cumming, Ga.
AT&T said it was planning to use 12 units of equipment from multiple vendors, with each 12-pound radio unit housed in a 14”x12”x5.24” weatherproof container. Each radio unit would include a transmitter, a receiver and an integrated adaptive beamforming antenna, AT&T said. The main lobe of its experimental antennas would be positioned plus or minus 10 degrees from the horizon with variable side-to-side positioning.
No more than 10 transmitters would be operated simultaneously, AT&T said. The carrier is seeking a test period of 12 months.
The application is currently pending, according to FCC records.
AT&T’s move to test 3.5 GHz systems follows last week’s formal formation of the Citizens Broadband Radio Service (CBRS) Alliance. The new alliance includes six major wireless companies, including Alphabet’s Access Technologies, Federated Wireless, Intel, Nokia, Qualcomm and Brocade’s Ruckus Wireless.
The Alliance said it was aiming to conduct LTE CBRS field trials in the second half of this year.
The push for 3.5 GHz technologies comes in the wake of the FCC’s decision last year to open up 150 MHz of spectrum in the 3.5 GHz band for commercial use.
Filed Under: Infrastructure, Wireless