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Antennas at

Cell Site

Sabordo, Sheila Mae G.

What is a cell site?
Acell siteorcell toweris
acellulartelephonesitewhere antenna and electronic
communications equipment are placed typically on a
radio mast,tower, or other raised structure to create
acell in acellularnetwork.

The elevated structure typically supports antennas, and

one or more sets of transmitter/receivers transceivers,
digital signal processors, control electronics, a GPS
receiver for timing, primary and backup electrical power
sources, and sheltering.
What is a cell
The antenna arrays need to be located high enough so they can
adequately cover the area.

Usually range in height from 50 200 feet.

Communicate with nearby towers mainly through radio frequency

(RF) waves, a form of energy between FM radio and microwaves.
Cell Tower
Antennas Directional Antennas
radiate and receive energy equally well radiate its energy more effectively in
in all horizontal directions a particular direction

best suited for applications requiring these antennas have one main lobe
good all round coverage and several minor lobes

widely used forradio

broadcastingantennas, and in mobile
devices that use radio such ascell
phones,FM radios,walkie-
talkies,wireless computer
networks,GPSas well as for base
stations that communicate with mobile
radios, such as police and taxi
dispatchers and aircraft
Location Antennas Space Diversity
can either be omnidirectional or Antennas
shared-directional two-branch space diversity antennas
are used at the cell site to receive
the same signal with different fading
envelopes, one at each antenna

Set-Up Channel Interference Reduction

Antennas Antenna
used to page a called mobile unit is a design configuration that reduces
or to access a call from a mobile interference in two critical directions
unit (areas)
transmits only data
can be omnidirectional antenna or
consists of several directional
antennas at one cell site
They are useful in increasing coverage for
wireless communications and reduce
An "umbrella antenna" is basically a
vertical monopole antenna that is top-
loaded with a large "end-hat". The hat
Types of a number of radial
of Umbrella-Pattern wires that
slope away from the top of the antenna.
Normal Umbrella-Pattern Antenna
Broadband Umbrella-Pattern Antenna
High-Gain Broadband Umbrella-Pattern Antenna
Unique Situations of Cell-Site Antennas

A. Antenna Pattern in Free Space and in Mobile Environments

1. The strongest reception still coincides with the strongest signal strength of the directional
2. The patternis distorted in urban and suburban environment.
3. Fora120 degree directional antenna, the back lobe (or front to back ratio) is about 10dB less
than the front lobe, regardless of whether a weak side lobe pattern or a no side lobe
pattern is designed in a free space condition. This condition existsbecause thestrong signal
radiatesin front bouncingback fromthe surrounding so that the energy can be received from
the back of the antenna.
4. A design specification of the front to back ratio ofthe directional antenna is different from the
actual front to back ratio in the mobile radio environment. Therefore the environment and the
antenna beamwidth determines how the antenna would be used in the mobile radio
B. Regular Check of the Cell-Site Antennas
Air pressurized cable is often used in cell antenna to prevent moisture from entering the cable
and causing excessive attenuation. One method to check the cell site antenna is to measure the
power delivered to the antenna terminal, however few systems have this capability. The other
method is to measure the VSWR at the bottom of the tower. In this case the loss or reflected power
due to cable under normal conditions shouldbe considered. For the high tower, VSWR may not be

C. Choosing an Antenna Site

acquiredwritten rulestate thatan antennalocation canbefound withinquarter ofthe size of cell
R/4.If the site is an 8-mi cell, the antenna can be located within a 2-mi radius. The hypothesis is
based on the simulation result that the change in site within the 2-mi radius would not at the
coverage pattern at the distance 8-mi away. If the site is 2-mi cell, the antenna can be located within
0.5 mi radius. The quarter radius rule can be applied only relatively flat terrain, not in a hilly area. To
determine whether this rule can be applied in a general area, one can use the point-to-point
prediction method toplot the coverage at different site locations and compare the differences.
- consist of an antenna array that changes the array pattern in response to
signal environment to improve the performance of a communication system

- transmit or receive multiple radio frequencies at once

- it increase data transfer rates and reduce errors by handling several copies
of the same information

- Employs SDMA (Space Division Multiple Access)

- To increase capacity is the principle reason for introducing smart antennas.

Types of Smart Antennas
Phased Array is composed of lots of radiating
elements each with aphaseshifter. Beams are formed
by shifting thephaseof the signal emitted from each
radiating element, to provide constructive/destructive
interference so as to steer the beams in the desired

Adaptive Antenna Array is an array of multiple

antenna elements, with the received signals weighted
and combined to maximize the desired signal to
interference plus noise power ratio.
Common Smart Antenna
1) SIMO (Single Input Multiple Output)
- one antenna is used as the transmitter and two or
more are used as the receiver.

2) MISO (Multiple Input Single Output)

- multiple antennas are used as the transmitter while
only one is used as the receiver.

3) MIMO (Multiple Input Multiple Output)

- multiple antennas are used as the transmitter and
Advantages Drawbacks
Increased range. Their transceivers are much more complex
than traditional base station transceivers.
Reduce co-channel interference
(CCL) and multipath interference. Expensive
Increased a higher level of security.
Use more power
Increase the number of users
Easy to use.
Compatibility, it can be applied to
various multiple access techniques
such as TDMA, FDMA and CDMA.
Cellular and wireless networks

Electronic warfare (EWF) as a countermeasure to

electronic jamming

Satellite Systems