The main advantage of a wireless network is exactly that: no wires. Wireless networks bring more convenience to our lives and have become an essential part of our daily routines. For example, with wireless networks, we can stream HD movies on the go and immediately share our memorable 4K video moments on mobile devices with family and friends anytime, anywhere.
To power immersive 5G mobile experiences, Samsung has introduced advanced 5G solutions that include new baseband units and new radios. Among these 5G radios, Massive Multi-Input Multi-Output (MIMO) radios are one of the most attractive options for mobile operators looking to deploy or enhance their 5G networks. Massive MIMO radio is a revolutionary solution that is equipped with numerous antennas for better coverage and more capacity than a radio. As 5G networks continue to expand around the world using mid-band spectrum, 5G Massive MIMO radios with hundreds of antennas are commonly deployed in the market to help manage the growth of mobile data traffic. .
To develop these powerful 5G Massive MIMO radios, a lot of testing needs to be done to inspect the performance and reliability of the products. One of the tests is carried out in a special facility called an anechoic chamber. Samsung Electronics has several anechoic chambers which are used to analyze and test the antenna performance of its radios. Recently, the company opened a large anechoic chamber at its Digital City campus in Suwon, Korea, to improve its ability to present more advanced and compelling 5G solutions to its customers.
Tests in anechoic chambers
The term “anechoic” comes from “an-echoic”, which means non-echo or non-reflective in Greek. As the name suggests, this room can emulate a non-reflective environment by using special walls, ceilings and floors to completely absorb all reflected electromagnetic waves. This is extremely important because even a small electromagnetic wave can interfere with an accurate antenna measurement. The interior walls are constructed with a number of absorbers which have a pyramidal shape and help to minimize interference in the shielded room. This concept is very similar to how a stealth aircraft evades radar detection by absorbing and scattering radar signals.
The interior of the chamber is also equipped with a parabolic reflector. This reflector is used to collect radio waves from a generator and re-project the waves to 5G radios placed inside the chamber. By collecting and re-projecting the waves from different angles, the parabolic reflector can simulate long distances, making the 5G radio appear to be transmitting radio waves to a mobile device from a remote location. While the size of the chamber is relative to the simulated distance, Samsung’s chambers can simulate a distance of up to hundreds of kilometers, creating what is called a “far field condition”. To measure the accuracy of radio performance, the size of the chamber is critical.
Samsung’s anechoic chambers are also capable of covering a wide range of spectra on the low, medium and high bands. This is particularly useful for evaluating 5G radio performance, as 5G covers different spectrum bands. Specifically, Samsung’s facilities have the capability to test mmWave antennas, which power high-capacity 5G mobile services. MmWave spectrum is not used in 4G technology, but is essential to support immersive 5G use cases due to its high bandwidth.
By allowing tests to be performed using a range of spectra, the data sets collected will help Samsung engineers verify and analyze a very large number of radio models. Based on the results, engineers are able to fine-tune and improve 5G radio performance to provide the best solutions for mobile services.
“We are expanding our capabilities by developing powerful 5G solutions with the newly added anechoic chamber,” said Seunghwan Yoon, vice president and head of the RF lab at Samsung Electronics’ Networks Business. “With rigorous quality control and verification processes, we look forward to bringing the full benefits of cutting-edge 5G solutions to more users for immersive mobile experiences. “
Better, more powerful and more reliable 5G solutions
The implementation of anechoic chambers is part of Samsung’s continuing efforts to provide superior and reliable 5G solutions that deliver super-fast connectivity to users. These chambers help Samsung develop innovative antenna systems suitable for advanced 5G solutions in a wide range of spectral bands. By leveraging a range of tools and facilities like anechoic chambers, Samsung is excited to deliver cutting-edge 5G solutions that deliver new and immersive mobile experiences to consumers and businesses around the world.