NTT DoCoMo completes macrocell trial of MU-MIMO, plus new waveforms and coding

Huawei and DOCOMO Collaborate on Large-Scale Field Trial of New Radio Access Technology

Huawei announced today a large-scale field trial of new radio access technologies conducted jointly with NTT DOCOMO in an outdoor test site in Chengdu, China. The trial saw Huawei was stream live video of trial activity to its booth at the CEATEC JAPAN 2015 trade show at Makuhari Messe in Chiba.

The trial was of large-scale Multi-User MIMO (MU-MIMO), with a concurrent connectivity of 24 user devices in the macro-cell environment on the sub-6GHz frequency band.

It was also used to validate the performance of Sparse Code Multiple Access (SCMA) and Filtered OFDM (F-OFDM) waveforms in the field, both of which are underlying technologies for a new 5G air interface candidate proposed by Huawei.

As an illustration of the potential for MU-MIMO, the cell average downlink throughput of MU-MIMOs is 1.34Gbps, with 3.6Gbps on download peak throughput in a 100MHz ultra-wide band channel; that’s about 10 times faster than single layer Single User MIMO (SU-MIMO) technology. The joint trial of 5G new radio access technologies is a key step toward accelerating 5G standardization and commercialization.

“As the first in the world to succeed with such a large multi-user environment test, this is an important milestone,” said Takehiro Nakamura, Vice President and Managing Director of NTT DOCOMO’s 5G Laboratory.

“This joint field trial represents a significant advance toward fulfilling Huawei’s commitment to developing 5G technology standards before 2018,” said Dr. Wen Tong, Huawei Fellow and CTO of Huawei Wireless Networks. “Results like these show we are making rapid progress and are on the right path. I am confident that what we have learned here will be reflected in even more innovative technological advances as we continue working on 5G research.”

Huawei and DOCOMO announced their partnership on joint trials of the new air-interface technologies for 5G in March 2015. The current field trials are taking place at a dedicated test site in Chengdu that enables both companies to systematically verify these technologies, including MU-MIMO, F-OFDM and SCMA.

Huawei said that it plans to launch the first 5G pilot networks with its partners in 2018, and aims to contribute to the 5G industry ecosystem to complete interoperability testing in 2019, and commercially launch 5G networks in 2020.