BTS and Node B Form Factors
Node B is the term used within 3GPP1 to describe what we have always known as the
base station. Node refers to the assumption that the base station will act as an IP node;
B refers to base station. The Node B sits at the boundary between the radio physical
layer (radio bandwidth) and the RNC, which in turn sits at the boundary between the
IP radio access network (RAN) and the IP core network.
We have talked about the need for power budget efficiency in handset design and
power budget efficiency in the switch. We also need power budget efficiency in the
Node B so that we can get the physical form factor as small as possible. If we can keep
power consumption low, we can avoid the need for fan cooling, which gives us more
flexibility in where and how we install the Node B.
Typical design targets for a base station or Node B design would be to deliver a cost
reduction of at least 25 percent per year per RF channel and a form factor reduction of
at least 30 percent per year per channel.
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