Ruckus ZoneFlex BeamFlex Beamforming


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BeamFlex, a first-of-its-kind smart antenna technology, delivers MIMO's benefits to 802.11a/b/g devices today and can be incorporated in future 802.11n devices to further increase MIMO diversity gain and maximize the potential of spatial multiplexing at minimal incremental costs.

Adaptable to any standard 802.11 a/b/g/n chipset, BeamFlex comprises a compact antenna array with multiple antenna elements capable of forming a large number of unique antenna patterns along with expert system software that continuously learns and selects the optimum antenna pattern for each communicating device in real time. By steering transmissions to high quality signal paths all the time, BeamFlex enables a Wi-Fi device to maximize and sustain its transmission speeds and minimize transmission errors.

As a result, BeamFlex technology offers more than 3X increase in performance and range, 8X expanded coverage for 802.11g/a networks. More importantly, Beamflex stabilizes wireless network performance to enable picture-perfect video streaming and crystal-clear voice communications to all corners of the home.

Smart Antennas with Unmatched Agility


Central to BeamFlex is an agile antenna system with multiple high-gain, directional antenna elements that can be combined in real time to offer an exponential increase in diversity order. With N number of high-gain, directional antenna elements, a BeamFlex antenna array provides 2N-1 unique radiating patterns to maximize range and coverage. A diversity combiner composed of low cost, software-controlled circuitry allows the BeamFlex software to configure antenna patterns in real time. The BeamFlex expert system software constantly learns the environment - the RF conditions, communicating devices, network performance and application flows - and ranks the optimum antenna patterns for each communicating device. Capable of re-configuring the antenna on a per packet basis the transmit control module selects a high quality signal path and optimum data rate for each receiving device. The BeamFlex software interfaces to the 802.11 MAC layer and is compatible with standard 802.11 chipsets. Residing in the host processor, it adds minimal incremental CPU load and memory utilization.

A Systems Approach to MIMO Diversity

In addition to offering a massive order of diverse path options, joint-optimization of the antenna structure and transmission policies based on real time, multi-disciplinary knowledge allows BeamFlex to maximize signal coverage, throughput, network capacity, ensuring consistent and instantaneous bandwidth delivery to real-time applications such as video and online games.

Active Interference Avoidance

Unlike omni-directional antennas that radiate signals in all directions, BeamFlex specifically directs transmit energy towards the best path to the receiving device. And unlike fixed-positioned directional antennas, BeamFlex dynamically configures its "beam" on a per-station, per packet basis to achieve omni-directional coverage in a home. Offering the best of both antenna technologies, BeamFlex maximizes power efficiency while minimizing noise to nearby networks and devices.

In addition, an interference avoidance algorithm enables the BeamFlex software to detect the direction of interference from, for example, a neighboring network, a microwave oven or a nearby blue tooth device. In response, BeamFlex is able to select antenna patterns that direct energy away from the direction of interference; thereby attenuating noise to the receiving station.

The following performance report demonstrates the power of the BeamFlex Interference Avoidance algorithm

Ruckus ZoneFlex System