Left: Viavi Solutions CellAdvisor Cable and Antenna Analyzer showing a TestWizard screen
Right: Viavi Solutions CellAdvisor Base Station Analyzer showing RFoCPRI mode
Viavi Solutions provides test and measurement solutions to mobile operators and tower contractors. From the tower to backhaul, the company’s products validate fiber and coax connections and radio performance. The company provides RF testing for performance as well.
“In the last four years or so we’re seeing the fiber connections go to the top of the tower,” says Kashif Hussain, solutions and marketing lead for Viavi Solutions. Wireless service providers “have to validate the fiber runs.”
Ideally, this would be done from the ground rather than from the top of the tower to save the cost of sending a climbing crew or a crane to the top of the tower, he said.
Viavi has perfected a way to conduct this testing from the tower base; its CellAdvisor Base Station Analyzer with RFoCPRI “can run a radio test and interference analysis from the ground by testing CPRI links,” says Hussain. “We did the first of these kinds of tests; other companies are just catching up. It’s new and we’re very good at it.”
Newly introduced is the company’s TestWizard solution, available on its CellAdvisor Cable and Antenna Analyzer. TestWizard lets mobile operators create standardized test procedures that follow established Methods of Procedure (MOPs) on a PC. They can then easily distribute them via the cloud or a USB drive to all of their contractors’ and cell technicians’ CellAdvisor analyzers. As a result, technicians test in conformance with the operator’s exact criteria just by following TestWizard prompts on the analyzer—minimizing training and certification requirements.
“Operators have methods of procedure that contractors in the field have to follow. Mistakes in the field are costly, and may mean revisiting a site,” he says. TestWizard helps minimize mistakes and revisits.
Asked about how the company solved a unique problem, he pointed to a Tier One company in North America which was having an issue with the radio on the tower. There was interference to the cell signal but a Passive Intermodulation (PIM) test “came out clean,” says Hussain.
He explained most PIM tests look at passive components and ignore issues caused by active components. With our CellAdvisor Base Station Analyzer, we identified the radio itself was the problem,” he said.
Typically, a contractor using Viavi’s test equipment comes to a newly-built cell site and tests to ensure nothing is interfering with the cell signal and there are no signal losses. “They need to run certain tests to validate that each cable and all the components are working correctly,” says Hussain.
Tests can be performed quickly and help a contractor identify the source of a problem and correct it. “We save them time because we offer faster calibration systems. Cloud-connected instruments help field operators see results quickly.”
Automation elements the company has built into its gear “help you in getting the job done right the first time,” he says.
For more information on Viavi Solutions click here.
By Leslie Stimson
December 15, 2016