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By | October 24, 2018 | 650 views

Interference hunting in cities: choose angle of arrival over power

The urban RF environment is very demanding – densely packed with a myriad of cellular and non-cellular transmitters, full of interfering emitters and populated with buildings inconveniently located between you and the signal you are trying to find. In this situation, it pays to know the merits of different interference hunting techniques and the advantages of using expert equipment. Anyone…

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By | December 11, 2017 | 1,422 views

HetNets/Small cells: verifying indoor deployments (part 4 of 4)

HetNets and small cell indoor deployments are an effective means to deal with the exponentially increasing data consumption in mobile networks. After the careful planning and actual installation of a new small cell network, it’s time to verify the commissioned indoor deployments and ensure quality of experience (QoE). Both are best achieved with a commercially available smartphone, designed for reliable…

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By | November 13, 2017 | 1,633 views

Interference hunting: the real meaning of automatic direction finding

The need for interference hunting in mobile networks is steadily increasing. And field engineers often ask us which tool we would recommend to be successful in the field. With decades of expertise, what we can say for sure is that it depends: the right tool for successful field service operations depends on the source of interference. Sources are manifold, but…

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By | August 3, 2017 | 4,557 views

PIM testing: best practices in a nutshell

When it comes to PIM testing, the necessary steps to identify passive intermodulation (PIM) and locate its source are similar to interference hunting. In the end, PIM is an internal source of interference and can have a significant impact on network performance. Before starting with PIM measurements, however, it is recommended to test return loss. The PIM analyzer transmits high power;…

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By | April 20, 2017 | 1,413 views

Smart macro network enhancements: higher-order sectorization

The various macro network enhancements available today offer a cost-efficient and smart approach to increase the capacity in mobile networks. In the previous 3 parts of this series, we discussed the two hardware-related capacity-enhancing features carrier aggregation and 4×4 MIMO, and we covered antenna tilt optimization. The final part of this series looks at yet another antenna approach to optimize…

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By | March 30, 2017 | 919 views

HetNets/Small cells: indoor installation (part 3 of 4)

With network planning and network design in the can, the small cell deployment’s most critical phase begins: the actual indoor installation and commissioning. Or did you know that more than 50% of subscriber issues originate in the antenna system? Many of these faults don’t necessarily trigger an alarm at the Operations Support System (OSS), at least not until a critical level…

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By | January 19, 2017 | 2,148 views

Smart macro network enhancements: antenna tilt optimization

Antenna tilt optimization is a cost-efficient and smart approach to increase the capacity in mobile networks. Today, operators have to focus more and more on data capacity and network densification. Also, particularly in urban and dense urban environments, macro cells need to be smaller and coverage needs to be limited. One important method to achieve this is antenna downtilting. It…

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By | January 12, 2017 | 1,220 views

Identifying passive intermodulation

Passive intermodulation is nothing new. It has been an issue since the first commercial networks. In GSM, for example, whenever a PIM issue was present, network operators could easily re-allocate frequencies without affecting the service. With 3G and 4G, however, frequency re-allocation is no longer possible. PIM problems have to be dealt with. They have become even more important as…

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By | December 29, 2016 | 13,230 views

Smart macro network enhancements: 4×4 MIMO

The various macro network enhancements available today offer a cost-efficient and smart approach for capacity increase in mobile networks. In the first part of this series, we provided an overview of the hardware-related capacity enhancing features and discussed carrier aggregation in detail. The second part of this series discusses higher order MIMO antenna configurations, particularly 4×4 MIMO. The potential of…

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