Antenna Extender PPT Transcription
Hello, my name is Gary Grimes. I am the Director of Sales for RF Solutions for Optical Zonu Corporation (https://www.opticalzonu.com/). I would like to spend a few minutes to talk to you about our Antenna Extender line of products. The Antenna Extender (Optical Zonu Antenna Extender) works in conjunction with standard cellular wireless repeaters or RF boosters.
The repeater is a product that is used to bring coverage wireless coverage into areas that are otherwise in shadow shown here. If you are on the roof of this building, you have a clear signal coming from the nearby donor site. The repeater connects to an antenna on the roof pointed at the donor site. This antenna is connected to the repeater over a coaxial cable, amplifies it, splits it and routes it to multiple antennas that are distributed around the building to ensure you have uniform downlink coverage. In addition, the user’s cell phone signals are combined, amplified, and sent up to the donor antenna where it sends it off to the donor site. For such a product for it to work correctly it must be filtered so that it passes only the bands of interest, and you are not amplifying any extraneous signals or causing jamming to any other site. The repeater must also provide balanced coverage – that is the range of coverage for the downlink signal must equal the uplink range. The product must be FCC approved.
Here is an example of a top-end consumer product from Wilson. The WilsonPro shown here is part of a kit which includes the repeater itself and along with the coverage antennas which are shown at the bottom – the small round ones which are mounted in the ceiling and connect to the repeater with those coax cables shown in the back. The cone-shaped antenna on the left is the donor antenna which mounts on the roof and points towards the donor site.
In some cases, the distance between the donor antenna and the location where the repeater must be installed will be too long to use a coaxial connection. This could be maybe 150 to 200 feet. The repeater needs to be close to the coverage area as much as possible to get the maximum sensitivity and the best downlink power but if the if the donor antenna location on the rooftop is too far, then coaxial cable just will not work. It will degrade the signal too much.
That is where the Antenna Extender comes in. It is a replacement for this cable run that does not have that distance limitation. We are talking about an RF over fiber connection between the donor antenna and the repeater that can be up to a thousand feet and more. This is a filtered connection that only passes the frequency bands of interest. In this case, only the commercial bands are passed.
It is made up of two units. There is the Antenna Unit which mounts outside or inside but it connects to the donor antenna. There is the Equipment Unit which is connected to the repeater. These are DC powered units which can be powered locally or remotely. The antenna unit as shown here is powered remotely over a hybrid cable since the location on the rooftop may be far from a power source. The standard bands shown here are the 700, 850 cellular, PCS, AWS and WCS bands. There are no adjustments to be made. We have a version for which supports the 2500 megahertz TDD service of T-Mobile. We have public safety versions the 700 and 800 MHz bands and we have a version for the common European five bands as well. When we connect it directly to the Wilson repeater, the entire kit is compliant with all FCC regulations. The maximum uplink output of the unit is +17 dbm. You generally want to put the antenna unit as close to the donor antenna as possible so that you do not incur any additional loss from the coaxial cable connection. This means the antenna unit is generally going to be outdoors so the connections to the antenna unit must also be outdoor rated. This shows a couple of examples here of the hybrid cable that Optical Zonu provides. You can see the cable is a hybrid cable, so it has two fibers, and it has two 20 gauge conductors for the DC power. There is a breakout that splits the fiber and the dc as you can see on the left. The optical connector is dual LC/APC connector that is protected by that Senko boot. That is the Senko IP68 connector which twists on and seals the connection. The Hiroshe DC connector which is an IP68 rated connector as well.
So, here is the Antenna Extender we were just talking about. You see the two units here. The Antenna Unit is a little heavier because it contains all the filtering. Here is the Equipment Unit which connects to the BDA or the RF booster. So, this connects to the repeater, and this connects through here to the donor antenna from this N connector. You can see they are outdoor-rated. The Equipment Unit is going to be mounted indoors most of the time however all the connectors and the housing is all NEMA 4X. We have a dual LC/APC connector here which is inside this cap so if it is indoors, you can use a standard LC/APC. You can tell by the green color it is an angle polished connector. The DC connection here is the four pin Hiroshe connector. It is an IP68 rated connector that pops in and twists on. You want to maximize your uplink output power which means you want the Antenna Unit to be as close to the donor antenna as possible. So, most the time the Antenna Unit is going to be mounted outdoors on the mast with the antenna and there may well be no DC power out there. We provide a hybrid cable which is an outdoor rated cable that has two fibers and two conductors and provides a single cable connection that will allow you to go over a thousand feet if you need to. The Antenna Unit can support up to a 12 volt drop.
To give you an idea, this is an outdoor cable that we use. This one is not a hybrid cable. Here is the Senko boot. If we take this cap off here (first of all you have to pull back the locking ring) and then untwist this and you see the connector inside. It comes capped for protection to the connectors which are very sensitive. You pull the caps off and then, on the unit, twist this off. You can see there are a couple of lines here on the connector and there is a line here on the connector on the unit itself that gives you an alignment. You slide that in, the pull the boot back, and slide the connector in until it seats properly. Push up the locking ring and it is sealed. This one is a 50 meter length, but you can go over a thousand feet.
You can use an indoor dual LC/APC connector here if you are in a standard environment. For the public safety version, the indoor unit would also have to have the sealed connector because both units need to be NEMA 4X for the NFPA codes. (For more information, see our video at Antenna Extender Video.)
These are the basic features of the Optical Zonu Antenna Extender. There is another version for distributed coverage. There are cases where there is a single off air signal that that needs to go to multiple locations so there could be several Wilson or other repeaters that are connected to a passive DAS in multiple structures. For this we have this distributed version. You can see the antenna unit is connected to this passive optical component here. For the downlink, this unit is a one by eight optical splitter to route it to up to eight locations. Here we are showing four connections, but it could be up to eight. For the return path, each one of those equipment units on the right is tuned to a different CWDM wavelength. So, the uplink optical signals are combined by a CWDM multiplexer. This makes sure that there is no possibility that the optical signals could beat against each other and cause degradation in performance. The combined optical signal coming back to the Antenna Unit is from multiple Equipment Units, so the uplink signal is attenuated so that we are not overdriving the photodiode receiver in the Antenna Unit.
VHF and UHF are channelized services with 12.5 kilohertz channels separated by five megahertz which are all interleaved. This makes it problematic to do a duplexed port, so you need a unit with separate transit receive antennas if you wanted something universal. That is something we do not have at this moment however the 700 and 800MHz Public Safety is straightforward as it has well-defined transmit and receive bands. The only other thing that is required we have to make sure that the units are compliant with NFPA – that’s the National Fire Protection Association codes so that means both units have to be NEMA4X. There also has to be basic remote monitoring to connect to a enunciator panel. The units also need to be FCC and UL approved. We have a basic European version that is being expanded from the five bands shown here at the top to also include the new band 78 which is the C band auction now just closed in Europe. This is a TDD service like the T-Mobile services but is easily accommodated. This requires that the laser and photodiode in the standard units which are three gigahertz are replaced by our four gigahertz units to cover band 78. We are also doing a Tetra version to support the FDD Tetra variant that is used in Europe and elsewhere for public safety.
So that is the basic overview of our Antenna Extender. If you have any further questions, you need some more detail, or you have a specific project that you need some help in designing, do not hesitate to contact us and we will be happy to provide whatever assistance you need.