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Today's mobile communications market is very competitive, with wireless service providers making every effort to improve the performance of their network to retain subscribers. Coupled with the proliferation of radio-frequency signals in the environment due to the growth of all forms of wireless communication, this leads to a very challenging task - namely, to provide ubiquitous high-quality service in spite of ever-increasing interference levels. One of the tools at the disposal of the network operator to provide such service is a cryogenically cooled receiver front end for base stations, wherein each receive path consists of a high-temperature superconducting (HTS) bandpass filter followed by a cryogenically cooled low-noise amplifier. There are two primary benefits achieved by the use of this front end. The first is improved receiver sensitivity through the reduction of electrical noise generated by the front end itself. The second is the significant reduction in the effects of out-of-band interference through the highly selective filtering made possible by the use of HTS materials. While this paper addresses both receiver-sensitivity and filter-selectivity benefits, the focus is on improved out-of-band interference rejection through enhanced filter selectivity.
Date of Publication: June 2003