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Airspan MacroMAX

MacroMAX is a family of single mode (IEEE 802.16-2004 or 802.16e-2005) highly integrated macro-cell base stations with all-in-one packaging of RF and base-band components. MacroMAX includes integrated dual RF transceivers to support two channel diversity and MIMO.

MacroMAX family comprises of two products:

  • MacroMAXe - an all outdoor solution for Mobile WiMAX applications to minimise physical footprint and operator OPEX
  • MacroMAXd - an all indoor solution for Fixed WiMAX applications.


  • Fully integrated macro-cell Base Station with 2x2 MIMO
  • Compact and light-weight form factor for optimum OPEX performance
  • Support for 2x10 MHz or 1x20 MHz channels
  • Advanced RF features for optimized coverage and throughput

MacroMAXe is a class-leading 2nd generation Mobile WiMAX base station which employs the software defined radio (SDR) technology first developed for HiperMAX, together with dual radio transceivers, antennas and GPS receiver all in a highly integrated, physically small and light, all outdoor package.

MacroMAXe has been designed and optimized for the 2.3 GHz and 2.5 GHz Mobile WiMAX bands and will be Wave 2 certified in these bands. The product has been designed to address the markets needs thru to 2011 and beyond by supporting the current and future air interfaces thanks to its SDR technology.

MacroMAXe is a remarkable base station product bringing together state-of-the-art technologies in a compact all outdoor package. Thanks to its small footprint MacroMAXe minimises site OPEX expenditure. MacroMAXe is small in size but big in performance. Thanks to the efficient power amplifier technology employed in its RF implementation, MacroMAXe implements dual 40 dBm (10 W) radios for 2x2 MIMO delivering up to 60dBm EiRP with the integrated antennas.

MacroMAXe initially supports 5 MHz and 10 MHz channel sizes. However, the product is capable of supporting 20 MHz channels (Mobile WiMAX profile Rel. 1.5) as well. MacroMAXe has been designed to support either 2x10MHz (using dual PHY/MAC) or 1x20 MHz channel.

MacroMAXe has been conceived for deployment in 3-sector configuration, which is the optimum configuration for Mobile WiMAX deployments. MacroMAXe design also incorporates an Ethernet switch which enables the traffic from 3 sectors to beaggregated for backhaul and network interfacing. MacroMAXe fully supports the interoperable R6 reference point for interworking with ASN Gateways either in a distributed or centralized network configuration.

In licensed band deployments available spectrum is a scarce and valuable resource. Therefore it must be used efficiently. In order to achieve frequency reuse factor of one (N=1) the best balance between spectral efficiency and interference mitigation must be achieved. This is realized through Fractional Frequency Reuse for which MacroMAXe has been optimized. Fractional Frequency Reuse controls co-channel interference to support frequency reuse of one with minimal degradation in spectral efficiency. MacroMAXe can also be deployed using traditional frequency reuse plans.

Main Features

  • Supports 802.16e-2005 SOFDMA
  • Optimised for 2.3 GHz and 2.5 GHz bands
  • All-in-one single outdoor unit minimises site OPEX
  • Dual 40 dBm radios
    • 60 dBm EiRP with integrated antennas
  • STC and MIMO support
    • Matrix A
    • Matrix B
  • Supports 5/10/20 MHz channel size
    • 2x5 MHz
    • 2x10 MHz
    • 1x20 MHz
  • Supports interoperable reference points defined by NRM
  • Supports interoperable R6 reference point
  • Supports 512, 1024, 2048 FFT SOFDMA
  • Compact and light form factor


MacroMAX pic

MacroMAXd is a WiMAX Forum™ certified base station product; one of the first to achieve certification. MacroMAXd has been shipped to customers since 2H 2005.

MacroMAXd has been designed to deliver the best link budget with the highest capacity and net throughput; all essential qualities for macro-cell deployments used in typical wireless rollouts. It is available in the 3.4- 3.6 GHz band in the 3.5F1 profile.

Each MacroMAXd sector comprises of a 4U high rack mountable shelf, which contains the baseband processor and the RF unit. The baseband is a single card that is directly connected to the RF, PA and LNA, which in turn is connected to appropriate mast installed antennas via external feeders.

Two separate antennas enable the link budget to be further increased through the use of multi-channel transmit diversity and receive diversity. A compact rack supports up to three sectors with diversity a full rack supports up to 4 sectors.

Both MacroMAXe and MacroMAXd base stations are managed by Netspan, Airspan’s SNMP based element management platform.

Main Features

  • The first base station to achieve WiMAX Forum™ certification in the FDD profile in March 2006
  • Designed for Fixed WiMAX deployments where high capacity is required
  • Available in 3.5 GHz full FDD profile
  • MacroMAXd supports
    • 256 FFT OFDM
    • Up to 35 dBm transmit power
    • 3 or 4 diversity channels per rack
    • Baseband to RF connection made digitally
    • Final RF feed using conventional antenna feeders
    • Downlink diversity (Space Time Coding - STC)
    • Uplink diversity (Maximal Ratio Combining - MRC)
    • Up to 10 Mbps net capacity using 3.5 MHz channel

MacroMAX Network Diagram

MacroMAX Operation

MacroMAX Base Station Technical Summary

  MacroMAXe MacroMAXd
Mobile WiMAX Yes No
Fixed WiMAX No Yes
Standards Compliance IEEE802.16e-2005 IEEE802.16-2004
Form Factor All Outdoor Indoor
Frequency Bands 2.3 GHz, 2.5 GHz (700 MHz - Future) 3.5 GHz
Channel Size 20 MHz, 2x10 MHz, 10 MHz, 5 MHz 3.5 MHz
FFT 2048, 1024, 512 256
Duplex Method TDD (FDD - Future) FDD
Tx Power (Frequency band dependant) 2x +40 dBm 2x +35 dBm
Maximum EiRP per sector +60 dBm +53 dBm
GPS Synchronisation 8hr holdover, Integrated No
STC Yes Yes
MRC Yes Yes
MIMO 2x2 No
MIMO Matrix Type Matrix A, Matrix B No
CSM Yes No
Beamforming No No
Uplink Sub-Channelization Yes Yes
Fractional Frequency Reuse Yes No
Dynamic Frequency Selection (DFS) No No
Ethernet CS Yes (Future) Yes
IP CS Yes No
IP version support IPv6, IPv4 IPv4
Network Interface 1000 bT Ethernet / R6 100 bT Ethernet
End to End VLAN (802.1Q) No Yes
Network VLAN Traffic Segregation Yes Yes
ASN Profile Profile C No
Supported Usage Scenarios Mobile, Portable, Nomadic, Fixed Nomadic, Fixed
Handover Supported Yes No
Encryption AES DES, AES
Authentication PKM, PKMv2, EAP-TLS, EAP-AKA, EAP-SIM PKM
Environmental (outdoor elements) ETS 300 019-1-4 Class 4.1E ETS 300 019-1-4 Class 4.1E
Environmental (indoor elements)   ETS 300 019-1-3 Class 3.2

Note: Specifications are subject to change without notice and are for information purposes only.