NEC taps Xilinx AI FPGAs for next generation 5G radio units

September 24, 2021 // By Nick Flaherty
NEC taps Xilinx AI FPGAs for next generation 5G radio units
NEC’s 5G radio units will use the Xilinx 7nm Versal FPGA with AI accelerators for signal processing for massive MIMO beamforming with O-RAN interfaces

Xilinx and NEC are collaborating on the next-generation 5G radio units (RUs) expected to be available for global deployment in 2022.

The global Open RAN designs will use the Xilinx 7nm Versal AI Core series devices, which are currently shipping in volume production. These will provide the signal processing for massive MIMO radio units with digital beamforming for more efficient 5G communication and wider bandwidth.

The NEC RUs will support a wide range of 5G frequencies, including C-Band for open and flexible 5G RAN deployments and interoperability with products from different vendors.

“NEC’s new massive MIMO radios using Xilinx’s commercially-proven beamforming capabilities will enable an improved wireless end-user experience as use cases continue to grow and evolve in the future,” said Liam Madden, executive vice president and general manager, Wired and Wireless Group at Xilinx. “The combination of NEC’s leadership in massive MIMO radio design and Xilinx technology will deliver a compelling solution to the ORAN market.”

“In the highly competitive 5G base station market, the integration of Xilinx technology within NEC RUs will provide valuable advantages to our customers who demand highly-capable and feature-rich RUs that deliver the performance needed to scale for nearly any application,” said Kenichi Ito, general manager, 1st Wireless Access Solutions Division at NEC. “The Xilinx Versal AI Core series delivers on its design promise for performance and scalability by using advanced signal-processing for massive MIMO antennas and beamforming. We look forward to continuing our collaboration with Xilinx.”;

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