Flint Helps Double Capacity with 4G+ for London Stadium
- Flint planned, designed and implemented the swap-out of 32 radio antennas to deliver 4G+ coverage inside a major north London stadium
- New antennas enable mobile data speeds of up to 150Mbps, with the capability to support up to 400Mbps
- Flint delivered full project management and resources
- Project forms part of a planned roll-out of 4G+ across the UK.
Flint was asked by a UK mobile network operator to manage the swap-out of 32 3G radio antennas and replace them with antennas that can support 4G+ communications for visitors attending events at a major multi-use sports and entertainment venue in London.
The new 4G+ service, launched in spring 2015, enables visitors to stream replay footage, use online sports apps and upload photos or audio at consistent speeds of 150Mbps or more on their mobiles.
Alan Bryant, Operations Director at Flint International explained some of the interesting aspects of the project: “Working inside the stadium was quite challenging as the installation of the remote radio units on the gantries required fitting to be carried out alongside existing infrastructure, which meant there was limited working space. We therefore had to come up with some innovative solutions to fit around existing infrastructure”.
Using its established network implementation service, Flint swapped out the 32 existing 3G antennas for new ones capable of supporting the very high 4G+ speeds. Each of the antennas beneath the stadium bowl had to be connected to remote units via co-axial cable, and the remote units themselves were then connected via the stadium fibre infrastructure to the communications room at the base of the stadium. An additional Point of Interface was installed in the stadium’s comms room to support the connectivity requirements of the lead network provider and other mobile operators.
The 4G+ service is being delivered by using carrier aggregation technology that combines two radio spectrum bands at 20MHz in the 1800MHz and the 2.6GHz bands.
During trials, the system was able to deliver speeds of up to 400Mbps by combining three 4G LTE carriers comprising 20MHz of the 1800MHz spectrum, 20MHz of the 2.6GHz spectrum and 15GHz of 2.6GHz spectrum.
Visitors and staff in the stadium now benefit from 4G+ with consistent data speeds of up to 150Mbps. This was one of the first UK implementations of 4G+, which is scheduled to be available in most UK cities by 2017.
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