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Article - Leading 4096-QAM modulations in MW systems & Multi Gigabit capacity

Modern IP Microwave (MW) systems must support advanced features to address effectively the LTE mobile backhaul network requirements as well as various enterprise needs for wireless IP connectivity solutions.

The key evolution challenge of MW systems that operate on licensed carrier frequency bands (6 GHz to 42 GHz) is how to increase radio data rates while maintaining system availability and reliability. With the widely deployed up to now links supporting up to 256-QAM, it was possible to transmit 8 bits/symbol and reach air throughput of 360 Mbps for a 56 MHz channel. To increase further the transmission rate, higher-order modulation schemes, from 512-QAM up to 2048-QAM, need be implemented.

Intracom Telecom, offers today in its packet microwave portfolio the market leading modulation of 4096-QAM. With the 4096-QAM modulation, 12 bits/symbol are transmitted simultaneously boosting the air speed up to 575 Mbps for a single 56 MHz channel. Furthermore, by utilizing packet compression and optimization techniques, line rates close to 1 Gbps are achieved. Even higher Multi-Gbps speeds are achieved by employing other advanced techniques such as XPIC and Radio Link Aggregation (RLA).

The throughput gain, when increasing modulation from the 256-QAM to 4096-QAM, is 60%, which represents a major break- through in MW technology, as shown in Figure1.

Implementing 4096-QAM in MW solutions is a true radio design innovation that brings together many advanced features. Digital Pre-Distortion (DPD) in particular allows for increased TX power transmission, resulting in an up to 7 dB improvement in the system gain for 4096-QAM. This state of the art design of the 4096-QAM MW systems offers leading IP capacity and the most robust RF performance among any MW solutions available today. As a result, by using the 4096-QAM MW systems of Intracom Telecom, operators can benefit in many ways:

  • Savings in spectrum fees (OPEX) because less channels on average for backbone network are needed
  • Equipments cost (CAPEX) savings because much more capacity for a given average link range is realized.

Intracom Telecom's MW portfolio comprises novel solutions, all supporting 4096-QAM modulation, and spanning various form factors and modularity capabilities:

  • Split-mount systems: Indoor Units (OmniBAS-2W, OmniBAS-4W and OmniBAS-8W) combined with compact high performance Outdoor Units
  • All outdoor radios based on the unique softaware-defined radio platform OSDR, available also as a StreetNode, which is ideal for small cell applications.
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