EXFO expands CPRI offering to support fibre-based RAN
EXFO has announced an enhanced FTTA test portfolio for its FTB-700G and FTB-800 NetBlazer Series to validate the fibre and underlying Common Public Radio Interface (CPRI) communication integrity between the base station and remote radio head with speeds of up to 9.8 Gbit/s.
Mobile operators are required, now more than ever before, to modernise their network infrastructures in order to keep up with continuous high-bandwidth growth. To meet subscriber expectations, many mobile operators are switching from legacy copper-to-the-antenna to fibre-to-the-antenna (FTTA) infrastructures. To add capacity and coverage for LTE services, they are deploying distributed antenna system (DAS) networks and small cells. DAS manufacturers are increasingly using the CPRI protocol as the go-to interface between base stations and DAS head-ends.
The benefits of using CPRI include substantial decreases of head-end deployment costs as well as minimised space requirements. However, this also brings new challenges to service providers by introducing new testing and troubleshooting requirements. With their expanded functionality, both the all-in-one ethernet/optical FTB-700G series and Netblazer FTB-800 series support all the needs of a technician to maintain and manage fibre-based cell sites faster, easier, and more cost effectively.
”Significant investments are being made worldwide on expanding the fronthaul networks to deliver better spectral efficiency and capacity,” explained Claudio Mazzuca, the vice president of EXFO’s Transport and Service Assurance Division. “By adding Common Public Radio Interface (CPRI) rates, EXFO is future-proofing its technology to meet the requirements of next-generation, fibre-based remote radio networks,” he added.