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Matsing Lens Antenna at Bidvest Wanderers Stadium

During October 2017 Radio Network Solutions (RNS) supplied and installed a Matsing Lens Antenna at the Bidvest Wanderers Stadium in Johannesburg, Gauteng. The multi-sector multi-band antenna stands 14 metres above ground level on a specially designed tower structure built and installed by RNS.

This premier cricketing stadium in South Africa, also known as the Bullring, is recognised for its world class facilities, which now includes state-of-the-art technology in wireless connectivity.

The Wanderers stadium is the second cricketing venue in Africa to benefit from LENS technology following Newlands Cricket Stadium, where RNS supplied and installed a similar solution earlier this year. Designs are also in progress for other sporting venues in South Africa.

“The Matsing Lens Antennais not only suitably shaped like a giant ball, but it actually holds industry records for data capacity throughput,” explains RNS sales director, Richard Hill. “Since capacity at Wanderers is around 30 000, RNS is assured that visitors will now be able to enjoy seamless connectivity throughout.”

Technical aspects

"Matsing Lens Antennas provide a new high-capacity solution for base-station antennas. Having developed and patented a new meta-material, Matsing is able to manufacture the worlds lightest RF Lens base-station antennas. RF Lens antennas provide several unique advantages over the traditional array or ‘panel’ antennas, particularly in providing significantly higher capacity, multiple individual beams, individual tilt and multi-band coverage from one antenna.

Furthermore, Matsing Lens Antennas have set new industry records for data capacity throughput and have been deployed at some of the largest events in the United States, including the 2017 presidential inauguration and the Coachella music festival for (2014-2016). Matsing Antennas provide the highest efficiency, highest capacity multi-beam base-station solution, utilising the latest RF lens technology," explains Neil Nordgaard, RNS Technical Director.

How an RF Lens works

A RF Lens, similar to an optical lens, forms or bends Electromagnetic waves through refraction. By placing a single radiating element on the surface of spherical RF Luneburg Lens, a high-gain signal is created radiating from the opposite side of the spherical lens.

RF Lens Multi-beam Antenna Design

Multiple radiating elements can be placed around the same sphere to create multiple independent and high-gain beams, utilising the same lens. This allows Lens based antennas to have significant performance improvement as compared to the traditional array or dish antenna technology.

Performance and capacity improvements

RF Lens based antennas can provide significant performance and capacity improvements over traditional antenna technology, such as the ability to have multiple independent beams for high order sectorisation, ultra-broadband coverage, high isolation between beams and individual beam tilt capabilities.

As one of Africa’s most innovative and leading communications solutions suppliers, RNS’ engineers design, implement and support wireless networks in any environment. Their combined expertise exceeds 60 years.

Mr Hill concludes: “We are thrilled to continuously supply world-class technology to venues and stadiums across South Africa, thereby allowing our clients to offer visitors and sport fans the ultimate spectating experience. We are confident that RNS will continue to be at the forefront of innovation.”

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