The Skoltech-designed 5G base station software has been launched in the MTS Skoltech 5G pilot network in Skolkovo. The patent application to Rospatent specifically notes that the software complies with 3GPP specifications and recommendations and OpenRAN standards. The base station’s software stack supports state-of-the-art data processing and communication algorithms, protocols, and methods in accordance with mobile operators’ requirements. The solution can operate in all the 5G frequency bands potentially available in Russia, both below 6 GHz and in the millimeter range. The software can be installed and operated using a broad variety of general-purpose processors and platforms. Currently, the software can run on ARM and x86 architectures, and discussions are underway regarding its adaptation for Russian processors.
In total, Skoltech has been granted three Certificates of State Registration for:
- L2 protocol stack software that supports all the key base station control functions, such as management and allocation of radio resources, including the switching of transport and logical channels, dynamic resource allocation, error correction, and data exchange between the CU control module and the DU distributed module (Certificate issued on November 13, 2020).
- L3 NSA level 5G protocol stack software enabling the base station’s interactions with the mobile operator network core in non-standalone (NSA) mode and ensuring operation on top of the existing 4G network, which is essential for rapid deployment of 5G networks in the Russian Federation (Certificate issued on December 10, 2020).
- L3 SA level 5G protocol stack software enabling the base station’s interactions with the mobile operator network core in standalone (SA) mode. SA networks help fully use the benefits of 5G technology, such as ultra-high data rates and guaranteed low signal latency. In addition, the solution holds great promise for Russian non-operator (private) 5G networks and communication services for critical infrastructure facilities (Certificate issued on December 10, 2020).
State Registration marks a new milestone in the project pursued by Skoltech and its technology partners to build a platform for mass production of Russian 5G base stations. The final delivery is scheduled for the end of 2022.
Dmitry Lakontsev, Head of the Skoltech-based NTI Center of Excellence (CoE) for Wireless Technology (WT) and Internet of Things (IoT): “Our 4/5G software is unique in Russia, and OpenRAN support provides an opportunity for bringing our solution both to the local and global markets. State registration gives us every right to claim that our software is a Russian product, which is particularly important in the light of the government’s instruction to build 5G networks using Russian hardware only. Our technology partners, Eltex and Radio Gigabit, are responsible for the hardware part of the project and, just like ourselves, are following the roadmap and have already built a 5G base station prototype. Next year we expect to start testing the base station prototypes jointly with operators. This will help identify and meet the market players’ needs and lay the basis for future market demand for our solution.”
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