Aviat’s Multi-Band Solutions Overcome Connectivity Challenges in Locations with Low Fiber Density

In the quest for high-capacity, long-distance connectivity, network operators face significant hurdles, especially in suburban and rural areas where fiber deployment is scarce and costly. Although E-Band offers promising high speeds for short urban links, its limited range—often not exceeding 1km—poses challenges for extending connectivity over greater distances.

With existing microwave systems nearing capacity limits and availability of traditional microwave spectrum dwindling, the need for an effective solution to transport up to 10 Gbps over distances of 5, 10, 15km (about 9.32 mi), or greater is more pressing than ever. New operators face huge barriers to entry and are challenged to offer advanced mobile networks and better choices for subscribers when the incumbent operators have all the rights to the usable microwave spectrum – they need options for cost-effective high capacity backhaul or they face financial struggles right from the outset.

On top of that, in many countries the annual license fees for microwave bands are extremely high, often exceeding the cost of the microwave equipment itself. In these cases, moving capacity to E-Band (if available) where spectrum fees are usually lower or even non-existent, can save Operators a fortune in OPEX.

 

Extending the Reach Beyond E-Band’s Limitations

One approach to extend E-Band’s reach involves utilizing high transmission power and larger, steerable antennas. However, this method only offers a marginal distance improvement—potentially <50% better reach so it is not really a game changer considering the added costs and complexity and still falls short in providing the needed capability of supporting multi-gigabit capacities over longer distances.

According to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI)* only 20% of links in a typical network are less than 1km, while 70% of links are up to 7km long. A 50% improvement in the reach of E-Band will do little to serve most of the network capacity needs.

 

 

Introducing Multi-Band as the Solution

The real breakthrough comes with Multi-Band technology, which combines the high capacity of E-Band with the longer range and reliability of traditional microwave frequencies. Aviat Networks leads the way with the most comprehensive portfolio of Multi-Band solutions, designed to deliver unparalleled capacity over extended distances at the lowest total cost of ownership (TCO). These solutions are all integrated into the versatile WTM 4000 Microwave and E-Band platform:

  • WTM 4800 E-Band: A single-box solution with one or two transceivers. A dual transceiver solution offers >10dB of additional system gain for a typical 10Gpbs link.
  • WTM 4800 MB1 Multi-Band: The market’s only single-box Multi-Band solution, seamlessly blending E-Band speed with microwave reliability and providing exceptional TCO reductions in all areas including sourcing, freight, warehousing, installation, and operation.
  • WTM 4800 MB-XD: The unique Extended Distance two-box solution, capable of supporting 10 Gbps links over distances up to as much as 20km (depending on geography and climactic conditions).
  • WTM 4800 MB-VA (Multi-Band Vendor Agnostic): Allows for easy upgrading of third-party legacy microwave links with E-Band or Multi-Band overlays, enhancing capacity without overhauling existing infrastructure. By removing the need to upgrade and/or re-license the microwave link, MB-VA allows much faster capacity expansion of a backhaul network at a much lower cost.

 

Applications of Multi-Band Solutions

Aviat’s Multi-Band solutions are ideally suited for a variety of scenarios, particularly where distances between 3km and 20km (about 12.43 mi) need to be covered, and fiber deployment is either unavailable or prohibitively expensive. Whether it is enhancing connectivity in sprawling suburban communities, bringing high-speed internet to remote rural areas, or creating reliable backhaul for the burgeoning 5G network, Aviat’s Multi-Band technology offers a viable, cost-effective solution.

Suburban Expansion: Filling the gap where suburban areas transition into rural areas, ensuring communities remain connected with high-speed services.

Rural Connectivity: Providing a lifeline to remote locations, enabling access to digital education, telehealth services, and economic opportunities.

5G Backhaul: Supporting the dense network infrastructure required for 5G, especially in areas where fiber is not an option.

The limitations of E-Band for long-distance links and the capacity constraints of existing microwave systems underscore the necessity for innovative solutions like Multi-Band technology. Aviat Networks’ suite of WTM 4800 Multi-Band solutions stands out by offering network operators the flexibility, capacity, and range needed to meet today’s connectivity challenges. With Aviat’s Multi-Band technology, operators can now achieve up to 10 Gbps of capacity over distances where fiber is not viable, ensuring that no area is left behind in the digital era.

  • ETSI Presentation: New KPIs (Key Performance Indicators) For Planning Microwave and Millimeter Wave Backhaul Networks, Release 1.0 2022.02.26

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