Small 5G Cell Needs Big Changes
For the purpose of boosting up the speed of internet traffic and cloud-computing applications that require fast response, DFI gladly introduces you to the newest COM Express Type 7 module DV970. It provides not only enhanced computing performance and low-power consumption, but also versatile expansion capability. Therefore, a leading cellular carrier partnered with DFI to integrate DV970 in its 5G small cells.
Application: 5G Small Cell POC (Proof-of-Concept)
Solution: DFI DV970
Scaling 5G for the Future
The popularity of 5G mobile networks is an irresistible trend. Compared to 4G, users can expect 100x faster download speeds, 10x lower latency, and support for 500x devices in the same geographic space. These enhancements are expected to help users in a wave of new applications from autonomous vehicles, delivery drones, augmented reality, to 4K/8K video streaming, which are all areas where 5G shows great potential. 5G is a unified connectivity fabric that will connect everything around us.
As an old saying goes, “great oaks grow from little acorns”. Before moving to the era of the Internet of things, an infrastructure that can support massive data processing must be established, and there must be enough margin to support the substantial increase in data usage in the next ten years, along with satisfying the low-latency requirements of real-time applications.
According to the Ericsson Mobile Report 2020 Q2, the total traffic driven by 5G networks will be multiplied by 4 in 2025 years, which means the small cell as the backbone of 4G networks must have more powerful computing performance and share the workload of cloud computing. Based on the consideration of reducing long-term operating costs arisen from dramatically increased small cells to cope with the 5G millimeter wave (mmWave) due to the shorter transmission distance, incorporating the spirit of software-defined networking (SDN) and network function virtualization (NFV), and adopting a COTS (Commercial-Off-The-Shelf) and general-purpose hardware platform is even more indispensable.
"Latency" matters more than ever
From near to far, the latency issues of 5G networks can be divided into two levels: "signal processing" and "quality of service."
According to the Time Division Duplex (TDD) architecture of 5G NR (New Radio), if the theoretical transmission bandwidth of 10Gb/s (carrier bandwidth 400MHz, sub-carrier spacing 120kHz) is to be achieved, the small cell needs to have a slot that processes 14 OFDM symbols (Symbol) within 125 seconds (µs), in other words, 8000 slots must be processed within one second.