14 Jun 2016

ZTE completes 5G high-frequency & massive MIMO uplink tests

ZTE, an international provider of telecommunications, enterprise and consumer technology solutions for the Mobile Internet, has announced that it has completed the verification and performance tests of the 5G high-frequency communication and massive multiple input multiple output (MIMO) technologies in Shanghai and Shenzhen respectively.

The tests were organized by the Chinese IMT-2020 (5G) Promotion Group, and fully implemented in both line-of-sight (LOS) and non-line-of-sight (NLOS) scenarios. The test results met expectations. ZTE therefore became one of IMT-2020 (5G) Promotion’s first suppliers that has completed the high-frequency communication and uplink massive MIMO tests.

The Chinese IMT-2020 (5G) Promotion Group formulated the general 5G technology research and development (R&D) experiment plan in order to bring together the strengths of enterprises, universities and research institutes and push the research of China’s fifth-generation mobile communication technologies, in order to carry out exchange and cooperation with international peers. From 2016 to 2018, the plan will be implemented in three phases, which are the key 5G technology test phase, the technological 5G solution verification phase, and the overall 5G system verification phase.

The first phase started in September 2015 and will end in September 2016. This phase focuses on key technology verification and performance testing. ZTE, as the core member of the Chinese IMT-2020 (5G) Promotion Group, has actively participated and cooperated with all activities of the group. Since the beginning of the 5G technology R&D experiment, ZTE has fully participated in the discussion and formulation of the test specifications. ZTE also launched the phase-I 5G test four months earlier, based on its own R&D product and test plan.

During the last two weeks of May 2016, ZTE completed the verification and performance tests of the two most important 5G technologies, which are the high-frequency communication technology and the massive MIMO single-site technology. All test results were recorded exactly as expected. The tests were divided into two sections, the high-frequency communication technology section carried out in Shanghai, and the massive MIMO technology section carried out in Shenzhen.

For the first section, the single-user throughputs in different noise-signal ratios in an indoor LOS environment were first tested. As a result, the single-user throughputs in different noise-signal ratios met the expected theoretical result, and the advanced mezzanine card (AMC) functions performed well. The single-user throughputs in different noise-signal ratios in an indoor NLOS environment were tested next. NLOS test scenarios include glass transmission, plasterboard transmission, iron plate transmission, glass reflection, and iron plate reflection, which were very close to the actual environment. As a result, the single-user throughputs in different noise-signal ratios met theoretical expectations, and the AMC functions performed well. ZTE also plans to carry out outdoor high-frequency communication product tests.

The massive MIMO test proved that, in massive MIMO evolved NodeB (eNBs), cell throughputs can be increased exponentially and downlink gains can be up to three times greater than those in conventional macrocell base stations. Meanwhile, considering that the uplink massive MIMO capacity may be restricted, ZTE also carried out uplink massive MIMO tests. The results showed that this technology could help exponentially increase cell throughput with the uplink gain reaching four times greater than before. So far, ZTE is the only supplier that has performed uplink massive MIMO tests.

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