Deutsche Telekom boosts 5G backhaul capacity

Deutsche Telekom and Ericsson proved the viability of frequency bands beyond 100GHz, such as W-band, for multi- gigabit wireless backhaul capacities for 5G and 6G during trials at Deutsche Telekom’s Mobile Backhaul Service Center in Cosmote headquarters, Athens.
5G’s capacity demands apply to transport. Just as radio access networks are starting to use higher frequencies such as 26GHz and 28GHz to allow more capacity, wireless backhaul is also looking into the possibility of higher frequencies with broader channels to enable greater capacities. Wireless backhaul currently uses frequency bands from 4GHz to 80GHz to support 5G transport requirements.

The joint field trial demonstrated for the first time a W-band wireless hop over a 1.5km range with telecom grade availability using pre-commercial equipment. This W-band hop was installed parallel with a 1.5km E-band hop, to show that the W-band has a similar long-term performance to E-band. The trial recorded speeds of 5.7Gbps over the 1.5km distance and topped 10Gbps over 1km hops.

The result proved that W-band (92GHz -114GHz) can perform on the same level as the E-band (70/80GHz), which is currently the only frequency band supporting 10Gbps wireless backhaul capacities for 4G and 5G. The W-band is expected to add more untapped spectrum needed for high-capacity wireless transport.

“The results of our trial with Ericsson confirm the feasibility of using higher frequency bands with wider channels as another solution in our portfolio to deliver high capacity and high performance backhaul for our customers in the 5G era. We hope soon to see those solutions brought into real production in a cost-efficient manner,” Konstantinos Chalkiotis, vice president 5G Solutions, Access & Home Networks, Deutsche Telekom, said.