Mitsubishi Electric Corporation announced that it will collaborate with NTT DOCOMO, INC., Japan’s largest mobile communication network operator, on joint experimental field trials of fifth-generation (5G) mobile communication systems and technologies based on an agreement they reached in December 2014. The trials ultimately pave the way for commercial 5G services from 2020.
An overview of the trials will be presented at the DOCOMO booth during Mobile World Congress 2015, a major telecommunications exhibition in Barcelona, Spain from March 2 to 5. In addition, the companies will make a joint presentation on April 16 to the Technical Committee on Radio Communication Systems of The Institute of Electronics, Information and Communication Engineers in Japan.
The main targets of the trials will be the achievement of ultra-high-speed mobile communication greater than 10Gbps using spatially multiplexed signals and to increase spatial utilization efficiency by using multielement antenna arrays (see figure). To reach these goals, however, new technologies are needed to reduce and control inter-beam interference among multiplexed beams, which results in lowered transmission speeds.
Mitsubishi Electric and DOCOMO will conduct outdoor trials using multiple antenna arrays operating at 44GHz. The units will form a virtual antenna array to evaluate performances of massive antenna arrays. Channel characteristics will be analyzed through simulations. Ultimately, they aim to use these massive antenna arrays to verify beam-forming technologies and interference reduction techniques required for 5G.
Momentum is gathering for international initiatives to develop 5G as the next-generation mobile standard following LTE and LTE-Advanced. R&D efforts are pointed at developing larger-capacity systems to meet the explosive demand for Internet traffic, which will require ultra-high speeds in excess of 10Gbps and massive connectivity for the nearly countless devices that will be interconnected by the Internet of Things. Mitsubishi Electric is already involved in studies focusing on 5G technologies, including through its participation in the 5G-standardization efforts of the Fifth Generation Mobile Communications Promotion Forum established last September 30.