Fiber-to-the-Antenna: Reach for the sky

2+2 for 4G

There is a growing demand for mobile bandwith, driven by smartphones and iPads for which 4G is now becoming available. Next-generation antennas need links between base and radio units (under the antenna) for fast data transmission. Two copper wires and two optical fibers are the best way to achieve this.

Versatile solutions

OFCC Business Group FTTA solutions, through Nexans Interface, could quickly outfit an existing or new site, whether pylon, building, water tower, etc. with little civil engineering. The product range includes three concepts: hybrid, separate links and re-use feeder. They are designed for outdoors (UV-resistant, -40°C to +85°C).

One for the money, two for the show…

Two years ago, when optical fiber started to replace coaxial (feeder) links at the antenna base, we created a solution with telecom optical and power components based on cables produced by Nexans. Hybrids were new; so we set up Process, Product and Quality teams to design and produce them. They were qualified in our own lab, using optical, mechanical and electrical tests.Then we did a field trial on a water tower. Since mid-2012, we have been promoting these solutions to installers, operators and OEMs throughout Europe.

Wealth of experience

Our success was also due to excellent partnerships with other Nexans units. Opticable in Belgium designed a special cable with excellent friction properties perfectly adapted to re-use feeder installations, and Nexans Korea helped us with their own FTTA local solutions, especially for hybrid cables. Hybrid component design is an additional competence for Nexans Interface which opens up a new world of applications, like active cabinets, video surveillance, smart city equipment, and solar farms.