Viavi Solutions has announced the launch of CPRIAdvisor, which will allow mobile service providers to remotely monitor RF conditions 24/7 for any fibre-to-the-antenna cell site.
With the vast success of CPRI (common public radio interface) front-haul deployments, and the never-ending growth of mobile data, service providers are expanding from a typical distributed RAN architecture to a C-RAN (centralised RAN) network topology. In C-RAN, base band units (BBUs) are co-located at a remote facility, and connected via CPRI links to a substantial number of remote radios spread around the network. Where C-RAN offers network and spectral efficiency, it also offers an opportunity for mobile service providers to troubleshoot network issues like RF interference in a more effective way.
Viavi has partnered with mobile operators to develop CPRIAdvisor, a new RF test solution that takes advantage of C-RAN architecture to increase RF visibility by performing continuous monitoring of the mobile spectrum and allowing remote access to expedite maintenance and problem resolution. CPRIAdvisor is based on network probes with RF over fibre (RFoFiber) technology, and is able to de-map RF components from fibre front-haul (CPRI or OBSAI) with flexibility in port density providing solutions for any type of cell site. Whether it is a macro cell with a smaller number of front-haul fibre links or a large DAS/C-RAN with hundreds of front-haul links, the solution can handle both.
Expanded RFoCPRI solution
The company also made enhancements to its RFoCPRI (RF over CPRI) technology that will help RF engineers and cell-site technicians more efficiently maintain and troubleshoot RF issues for fibre-to-the-antenna (FTTA) cell sites. As RFoCPRI becomes more widely adopted, so has the need to more effectively troubleshoot issues such as interference, front-haul connectivity and other antenna line challenges. With the newest enhancements to CellAdvisor, Viavi has simplified the troubleshooting process so technicians can easily and confidently rectify performance issues for all types of FTTA cell sites.
Uplink interference detection in LTE-TDD can be difficult due to its bursty spectrum response. The new gated sweep feature on CellAdvisor helps technicians exclude undesired downlink signals within a given CPRI UL subframe period, which can stabilise the UL spectrum for easier interference detection.
As part of BBU emulation, antenna line device information available today is limited to topology information. With CellAdvisor’s enhanced remote electrical tilt (RET) feature, engineers will have access to a wider set of data for the antenna line device as stored in the remote radio head (RRH), including device list, alarm status and mechanical tilt. The solution can also automatically detect and configure the link rate of the connected CPRI link, improving the overall RFoCPRI analysis process.
CellAdvisor’s new RFoCPRI Cell-ID decoding capability helps technicians quickly identify which RRH is experiencing performance issues. By supporting layer-2 BERT testing, CellAdvisor helps technicians quickly verify baseline error rates and ensure CPRI link performance to meet standards at the time of installation.
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