The ION-U distributed antenna system (DAS) platform from CommScope “has stripped the complexity out of integrating a DAS into a macro wireless network,” the company says. ION-U is an upgrade to CommScope’s existing ION platform that the company dubs a “simple to use, plug-and-play solution.”
While aimed primarily at the wireless-carrier market for inclusion in their networks, ION-U is also an appropriate solution for airports, railways, arenas, corporate offices, school campuses, hospitals and other enterprise-network environments that can benefit from owning an operating a DAS, the company points out.
Matt Melester, CommScope’s senior vice president and general manager for distributed coverage and capacity solutions, commented, “The ION-U has built-in intelligence that greatly simplifies installation, transforming a job that required considerable expertise into a relatively easy task. If you can connect a new printer to a computer or navigate a software installation wizard, then you can install the ION-U.”
The company further noted, “Although DAS is a well-proven solution for network capacity, innovation for simplifying the practical implementation of that solution has been stubbornly slow. This lack of simplification has meant longer time to market, prohibitively expensive engineering-skill requirements and notoriously difficult optimization, testing and maintenance. Every stage of traditional DAS deployment can be an exercise in extra expense and delayed ROI.”
The characteristics that position ION-U as a simpler DAS to deploy include the following, CommScope says.
- Embedded intelligence—that intuitively guides the design, planning, installation, setup, commissioning and optimization
- Remote configuration tools—that enable operators to re-sectorize and access auto-leveling functions from anywhere, or right at the headend
- Built-in monitoring—for measuring network quality, monitoring interference and passive intermodulation (PIM), and conducting detailed uplink/downlink spectrum analysis
- Smart alarms—for more quickly and efficiently troubleshooting quality-of-service issues
- Automatic documentation—including bill of materials, system configuration file, interconnect diagrams, rack elevation drawings according to power/thermal loading specs and commissioning records, which saves time and reduces errors
- A unified indoor/outdoor, low- and high-power platform—in a single master unit, which reduces space requirements and the number of cable runs while maximizing design flexibility
The ION-U is available in North America now, and CommScope expects to make it available later this year in Europe, then other global regions.