A 5G base station has been connected to the network core via a satellite link for the first time in Russia. The Russian Satellite Communication Company (RSCC) and the Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech) have tested a private 5G network running on locally sourced software and connected to a geostationary communications satellite. This is the first time that a Russian satellite has been used for a 5G project. In the future, the solution will help provide 5G services to users in remote areas.
The private OpenRAN 5G network solution was developed by Skoltech. The base station was connected to the network core via Express-80 using RSCC’s facilities at Shabolovka Technical Center and Dubna Satellite Communications Center.
The tests that included the transmission and playback of high quality 4K HDR, HLG and Dolby Vision video via the 5G network demonstrated the required service quality during the transmission of multimedia, voice and video via subscriber devices.
This scenario will enable deploying private 5G networks in remote areas lacking connections to backbone networks, with a possibility to remotely connect base stations within the satellite footprint to the network core via RSCC’s geostationary satellites.
RSCC Director General Alexei Volin says that the cooperation with Skoltech aims to create solutions ensuring technological sovereignty of Russia as regards the integration of 5G/6G technology and satellite telecommunications based on locally produced hardware and software systems and applications. Joining efforts and resources to develop and operate advanced 5G/6G and satellite communication solutions and software opens the door to the integration of Russian 5G networks and satellite communication systems.
Vitaly Shub, Head of the Skoltech-based 5G Leading Research Center, underscores the practical value of the results and the success of recent tests that mark the first step in implementing Skoltech’s long-term strategy for the development of cellular networks and their integration with the space segment, with the ultimate goal to build a nationwide integrated terrestrial and aerospace 5.5G/6G network in strict compliance with 3GPP releases and ITU plans.
Yuri Prokhorov, First Deputy Director General at RSCC, notes that the impressive results achieved in the leadup to RSCC’s 55th anniversary are quite expected, considering the company’s commitment to innovation. The collaboration in creating and implementing new solutions, software and services for 5G/6G networks and satellite telecommunications using advanced Russian hardware, such as Skoltech’s OpenRAN 5G solution and RSCC’s terrestrial and space facilities, helps effectively deal with new challenges with due regard for the strategic interests of both parties and the entire telecommunications industry.
Founded in 1967, the Russian Satellite Communication Company (RSCC) boasts the largest satellite constellation in Russia, spanning the orbit from 14°W to 140° E and providing worldwide coverage that includes the entire territory of Russia and C.I.S., Europe, Middle East, Africa, Asia-Pacific, Americas, and Australia.
RSCC provides mobile services for the Russian president and government and broadcasts federal TV and radio channels all over Russia and to most parts of the world. The company is broadly involved in national priority projects and close collaborations with the public authorities in the development of information, telecommunication and broadcasting systems. RSCC uses its extensive ground facilities and state-of-the-art satellites, including Express, Express-AM, Express-AT and Express-AMU, to provide a full range of services in any part of the globe, including TV and radio broadcasting, broadband Internet access, data communication, video conferencing, VSAT services, and corporate networks. RSCC has built a cutting-edge mission control center to manage both its own constellation and other satellites, such as Eutelsat.
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