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In the past two decades, we've seen mobile communication evolve from 1G to 4G LTE. In this process, key communication technologies changed and the amount of information processed is increased exponentially. The antenna is an integral part of this leap. As the middleware for transmitting and receiving signals, antennas have developed with the constant upgrades of communication technologies. In the 5G era, Antenna design has become more complex and systematic, from the initial single-array antennas to multi-array multi-unit antennas, from simple fixed-beam antennas to multi-beam antennas. Small size, multiband and wide band will be the main features of 5G antenna design.
5G will bring new experiences to users. Its transmission rate is ten times faster than 4G, which poses new requirements for the antenna system. At SIMCom Online Summit “5G accelerates economic growth, Cat. 1 helps to deploy New IoT”, famous domestic antenna manufacturer Sunnyway Technology’s CTO Zhou Yunfeng shared his ideas on 5G antenna design.
5G mainly adopts two frequency bands, namely SUB-6G and MMW. As we all know, the higher the frequency, the shorter the wavelength, the straighter the electromagnetic wave, the shorter the transmission distance, the worse the penetration, the greater the attenuation in transmission, the worse affected by cloudy, rainy and foggy weather. Therefore, we mainly adopt SUB-6G frequency band in China at present. The transmission rate of SUB-6G is greatly improved compared with 4G, and the cost is greatly reduced compared with MMW.
5G requires more antennas than 4G does. 4G adopts main antenna & diversity antenna design. Some LTE adopts dual antenna to realize the communication function. 5G adopts MIMO design. For example, 4x4 MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output) can effectively improve the communication capacity. With 4 antennas on the transmitting module and 4 antennas on the device, the number of antennas is greatly increased. Therefore, the positions and shapes of antennas need careful design to achieve good effect. To this end, Mr. Zhou Yunfeng gave some advice on 5G antenna design:
1.The further the antennas are from each other, the better the isolation is, so antennas should be spaced as far apart as possible.
2.At the same distance, isolation of low frequencies is higher than that of high frequencies, so antennas can be placed alternately, for example, two antennas containing low frequencies are separated by one with only high frequencies.
3.Antenna design can consider in different forms. The overall performance can be improved by changing the direction or polarization of the antenna.
After 5G antennas, let's look at modules. SIMCom 5G modules SIM8200EA-M2 and SIM8200G are 3G/4G/5G multimode and support 5G NR sub-6ghz frequency bands at the same time, such as N77, N78 and N79 frequency bands in China. SIM8200EA-M2 has been used in smart cities, online health care, drones and robotics, etc. SIM8300G-M2 that supports MMW is coming soon.
In the future, both the module and the antenna need to be customized according to their specific application scenarios. Instead of simply satisfying coverage and transmission capabilities, custom-made antennas and modules provide better communication quality.