|Andrew Corporation and SHARC® Pinpoint Caller Locations, Enhancing 911 Emergency Service,|
The Network Solutions Group of Andrew Corporation a global designer, manufacturer and supplier of communications equipment services and systems supplies measurement, test, and signal-processing systems that optimize wireless networks. With the tremendous growth in mobile communications arose formidable challenges in deploying Enhanced 911 services mandated by the Federal Communications Commission (FCC). The stringent E911 directive requires all U.S. wireless carriers to pinpoint to within 100 meters the locations of subscribers who call 911 from mobile phones.
To adequately prepare wireless service providers for E911 compliance, the design team recognized that it not only needed to design a robust system, but also to perform comprehensive, end-to-end network testing. Building an accurate, high-speed wireless location service requires finely tuned signal processing systems that automatically convey geolocation information from the wireless carriers to public safety answering points (PSAPs).
They also faced a double challenge of complying with the FCC's E911 mandate while supporting wireless networks as they migrate from 1G, 2G or 2.5G technology to the new 3G air interfaces. Pulling off such a feat was akin to changing tires while a race car nears the finish line. Any service disruption could have damaged its customers' businesses.
Precision planning, quick execution
Having enjoyed a long working relationship with Analog Devices (ADI), Andrew Corporation's team of master RF experts again chose ADI as their technology partner. Collaborating with ADI throughout the design and development process, they rapidly developed the Geometrix® Wireless location system powered by a clustered array of SHARC® 21160 floating-point DSPs. Its efficient internal memory boosts performance, while its flexible I/O aids parallel processing.
Using the SHARC's powerful instruction set and easy-to-use development tools, Andrew Corporation's RF experts created over 120,000 lines of custom code for its networked-based, overlay-location system. Geometrix's advanced algorithms process time-difference-of-arrival and angle-of-arrival signals to compute the origin of RF signals transmitted from a 911 caller's handset.
Lifesaving benefits rolled out
Up against FCC deadlines, their comprehensive field testing passed with flying colors. Once concluded, an immediate system rollout and deployment commenced. "Reliability and time to market are the most critical issues," says John Carlson, manager of the signal processing team. "We needed a high performance DSP that could be ramped into volume production immediately and SHARC met both those needs."
Someone who listens
"When a very large and strategically important project is at stake, it's extremely important to have a consistent technology partner who adapts to market fluctuations and changing telecom standards," maintains Carlson. "We count on ADI's leadership and expertise in the DSP wireless industry. That kind of support ensures success in all of our engineering and business challenges."
For more information about the Andrew Corporation, please visit www.andrew.com.
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