5G Base Stations: The Energy Consumption Challenge

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4Q 2020 | IN-6008


The Challenges of 5G Deployment


With the rapid growth of data traffic and the emergence of various network connectivity requirements, Mobile Network Operators (MNOs) in many countries are deploying their 5G networks to be ready for the next generation of the industrial revolution. These countries include South Korea, China, the U.S., the U.K., Saudi Arabia, Spain, UAE, Australia, Germany, and many others. As of Q2 of 2020, 110+ commercial 5G networks have been deployment globally, and solely in China, 650,000+ 5G base stations have been installed, and the terminal connections have reached over 160 million.

Although 5G is gaining momentum, several deployment and operational challenges have been troubling MNOs. Amongst these challenges, the most notable one is the energy consumption of a 5G base station due to the implementation of the massive MIMO technology and the level of network densification that need to provide a positive user experience. Early deployments indicate that 5G base stations require 2.5-3.5 times more power compared to a 4G one. Moreover, C-band, i.e., 3.4 GHz to 4.2 GHz, is deemed as the most popu…

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