Plasma Antennas, a UK smart antenna research, design and manufacturing company, has unveiled the mmWave Plasma Silicon Antenna (PSiAN) that the company claims can provide huge improvements in performance for 5G base stations compared to the current generation of technology.
Based on the company’s patented Plasma Silicon technology, the antenna reduces the cost of a 5G base station by up to 50% by eliminating phase shifters, reducing and consolidating amplification and reducing computation.
The PSiAN has no moving parts and is dynamically reconfigurable as it forms and steers beams. The technology does not need calibration and can handle practically unlimited power, having already been tested up to 40 watts. The Plasma Silicon-based products are smaller, lighter and use less power than equivalent products using current technology. The PSiAN also has an omni mode, when it draws no power at all.
The company has shown the value of the technology in a variety of scenarios, including 360 ̊ field of view beam forming and steering 28GHz 5W PSiAN, useful for pole mounted small cells, indoor small cells, or on a vehicle and a high power, long range, low loss small cell base station antenna for standalone and MIMO 5G, Fixed Wireless Access (FWA), and Connected Vehicle applications.
These devices can also be stacked to form and steer beams in two dimensions (azimuth and elevation), or to form multiple beams and MIMO applications.