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MaxLinear multi-Gigabit wireless through 12 inch concrete walls

William Payne
September 21, 2017

California based RF and mixed signal IC specialist MaxLinear Inc has introduced technology that can transfer data through typical building materials at an aggregate throughput of up to 2.5 Gbps. The AirPHY technology could allow service providers to provide bidirectional gigabit services within the home, large buildings and industrial locations. MaxLinear also say that the technology makes possible the deployment of 5G wireless broadband using the 28GHz band within buildings that have up to now been impenetrable to 5G operating on that waveband.

The company says that the new technology can transmit at multi-Gigabit data rates through concrete exterior walls up to 12 inches (30 cm) thick.

The company demonstrated AirPHY at IBC 2017 to show how the AirPHY technology can solve broadband service providers' dilemma of installing multi-gigabit data services in the home without drilling holes and running cables through external walls. The demo combined the AirPHY technology with wireless power to deliver 1Gbps data throughput and up to 25 watts of power across a 25mm low-emissivity (low-e) glass window. This, says MaxLinear, is more than enough to power the AirPHY and fiber-optic modems on the other side.

AirPHY technology can be used for deployments of 5G wireless broadband services using the 28GHz band which cannot effectively penetrate exterior walls or low-e glass windows.

MaxLinear says that AirPHY technology will enable service providers to provide bidirectional gigabit broadband services to consumers, delivered from a high-speed modem outside the home to a residential gateway or Wi-Fi router within the home. The AirPHY technology operates within unlicensed radio frequency bands and below the FCC limits for radiated emissions.

“There is a lot of discussion and excitement over broadband wireless access services in the industry and we think that AirPHY has some advantages in throughput and spectrum reuse that make it very compelling,” said Will Torgerson, Vice President and General Manager, MaxLinear Broadband Group. “We can foresee many different use cases and applications for this technology, both in retail and service provider markets.”