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White Paper


M. Giovanni  Frecassetti, B. Backemo ,D. Gentina , G. Ferrari, J. Edstam, L. Yigal ,N. Zein ,P. Nava ,P. Volpato ,R. Macchi ,M. Geen.E-Band and V-Band -Survey on status of worldwide regulation. ETSI.



Microwave1 is undergoing fast and deep transformation. Current and future mobile networks impact backhauling in several ways. The main drivers for change are the huge increase of capacity and enhanced coverage, together with new topologies where access and backhaul platforms should cope with ultra small hot-spots, strengthening the need to exploit available spectrum as much as possible and in the most appropriate way.

In particular, the first two drivers, in urban and sub-urban environments, lead to a new and revolutionary approach for microwave backhauling. Backhauling needs to satisfy apparently conflicting requirements such as increase of capacity and spectrum efficiency, very low power consumption, very low environmental impact, in short, to reduce total cost of ownership to a minimum to make the business case of operators turn positive. Capacity is increasing more and more while distances decrease and base stations get nearer to subscribers. Current traditional frequencies below 50 GHz are already very crowded and exploited, hence the need to use higher frequency bands in future-proof networks.

Due to technology evolution and availability of wide channel bandwidths, the use of frequency bands in the V-Band2 and E-Band2 appear to be of interest for the current and future needs for backhaul networks. The huge interest in this part of the spectrum in the last decade is also demonstrated by three European Framework Programme 7 (FP7) research projects: E3NETWORK [26] addressing mainly a backhaul solution in E-Band, MiWaves [27] addressing backhaul and access solutions in 60 GHz and 71-86 GHz Bands and IPHOBAC-NG [28] addressing integration of mm-wave radio and photonics for backhaul and other purposes.

E-Band and V-Band have different spectrum characteristics and nature:

 V-Band is characterized by a continuous block of 9 GHz of spectrum between 57 and 66 GHz, oxygen absorption that implies immunity to interference and enhanced frequency re-use, a favourable licence regime, mostly unlicensed or light licensed (country dependent).

 E-Band: since 2000, regulators have made available high frequency bands at 71-76 GHz and 81-86 GHz. E-Band enables gigabit-per-second data rates given the huge amount of available spectrum (10 GHz) without any oxygen absorption, thus allowing longer distances compared to V-Band.

Given the different nature of the two frequencies, different scenarios might be foreseen for each of them, including macro and small cell backhaul, front-haul applications, Line of Sight (LoS) today and most probably future near Line of Sight (nLoS) or No Line of Sight (NLoS).

Nonetheless, regulations for these two frequency bands aren’t always already decided, opened and planned and, especially for the V-Band case, the related portions of the spectrum differ from country to country making it very fragmented.




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  • Project acronym

  • Project title
    Energy Efficient E-band transceiver for backhaul of the future networks

  • Project reference

  • Project coordinator
    CEIT (Spain)

  • Start date: 01/12/2012
    End date: 30/11/2015

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