IBM and Ericsson tout 5G array advance for IoT, virtual reality

IBM and Ericsson said the end result of a two-year collaboration is a silicon-based 5G millimeterWave (mmWave) phased array circuit that can operate at 28GHz and offer very high data rates for Internet of Things, virtual reality and connected vehicle applications.

Per IBM, the 28GHz module consists of four monolithic integrated circuits and 64 dual-polarized antennas, measures approximately 2.8” by 2.8”, or about half the size of a typical smartphone.

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At 28GHz, each antenna is tiny and individually would support short communication distances, but combining multiple such tiny antennas not only increases the range but also enables steering of signals in specific directions. The IBM and Ericsson team’s 5G millimeterWave phased array design supports beam-steering resolution of less than 1.4 degrees for high precision pointing of the beam towards users, IBM said.

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