Currently, we have one active mMIMO deployment at The University of Utah's POWDER wireless testbed. The setup consists of an outdoor deployment comprised of one 64-antenna base station and six 2-antenna UEs. In this page we describe these setups and provide step-by-step instructions for how to get started with the platform.
The outdoor deployment features a 64-antenna base station, as shown in the picture on the left. The base station consists of 8 RRHs, each containing four 2x2 MIMO Iris SDRs. Due to regulatory constraints, this system can only operate in the CBRS band (currently, users are only allowed to transmit in the channels between 3540 MHz and 3600 MHz). We have noticed some third-party interference signals between 3550 MHz and 3600 MHz so we suggest users reserve the range 3540 to 3550 MHz. The base station is installed on the rooftop of the Merrill Engineering Building (MEB), at the University of Utah campus.
On the same rooftop, we have also deployed six other standalone 2x2 MIMO Iris SDRs that act as UEs. The pictures below show how these UEs are installed. In addition, we provide a diagram with the locations of the different devices and the distances between them.
NOTE: At the moment, there are only two UEs deployed at the “Clients #2” site (see image below), but we are in the process of expanding this number to six UEs across the three sites shown in the image.
The mMIMO base stations deployed at POWDER are capable of operating at both the BRS and CBRS bands, therefore, all antennas in the base stations are dual-band. HOWEVER, due to RF spectrum regulatory constraints, these can only be used around the CBRS band. The following table and image show both the vertical and horizontal separation among the antennas.
Dual-Band (BRS/CBRS) Antenna Separation
Individual board position (facing front of the array)
NOTE: Currently, there are some boards showing RF front end faults. Most likely, these won't work well, if at all.
Please avoid using the boards whose serials have been marked (strikethrough) in the table above.
For users to be able to run experiments on the massive MIMO platform on The University of Utah's POWDER wireless testbed, they need to follow the next steps:
This tutorial will show you how to perform each of these steps.
To get started, users need to request an account here.
2.1. Find the “Reserve Resources" option in the main menu:
2.2. Select resources:
mmimo1-mebbase station and one
irisclients2-meb. This will reserve one 64-antenna mMIMO base station and two 2-antenna UEs in the rooftop of the MEB building. For Agora operation, you will also need to reserve a
This same page will list the different resources and their reservation status (including the available frequency ranges). Users must also select up to 10 MHz of spectrum and the number of days you are planning to reserve your resources for. We provide a tool that allows you to search an adequate time window given your specification. For instance, if you select 2 days and hit the
Search button, the system will find a time slot and set your start/end time accordingly. Finally, you need to provide a simple reason for the request. When done, click the “Check” button.
2.3. If all the selected resources are available, simply submit the reservation for approval. Otherwise you will need to select other resources depending on what's available.
After the request has been approved, you can go back to this website to finalize your experiment reservation.
The next step is to instantiate the experiment, using one of the existing profiles we provide:
3.1. In the main menu, select “Start Experiment”
3.2. You will need to change the profile to either
agora, depending on the type of experiments you need to run. Although the
agora profile allows you to make use of all the RENEWLab tools, it is much heavier and take longer to load. The
renewlab profile does not support any of the Agora tools but it loads a much lighter image.
3.3. Once the profile is selected, simply click “Next”
3.4. You will now select the same resources you have already reserved, including the frequency band you will be operating at. Currently, we can only operate the mMIMO equipment in the 3550 MHz to 3600 MHz block.
3.5. Provide a name for the experiment and select your project as well as the cluster being used (for most cases this will be “Emulab”). Click “Next”.
3.6. Select the reservation that will be tied to this experiment and “Finish”
3.7. The next window will show the status of the experiment. If the reservation is some time in the future, the experiment will be scheduled to start at that point.
If the reservation is currently active, your experiment will begin the initialization process.
Once the process is completed, users will be able to create a disk image, extend your experiment duration, or terminate the experiment.
List View tab, users will find the different nodes in the experiment topology. We can
ssh into the host machine using the command provided. Remember to add use X11 forwarding (i.e.,
-X option) to forward the application display to your local machine.
Even though the experiment and resources have been instantiated, there are some startup scripts continue to run. These scripts install several dependencies that will be needed by users. Users can verify whether these scripts are still running, by looking at the
pc block in the
Topology View. At the top right of the compute node block, you will notice a circle with either a dot or a check mark. The check mark indicates everything has been installed and it's ready for use. See below:
By default, the RENEW profiles clone the
RENEWLab repository into the
/scratch/dev_repos/ folder. These profiles also install all the dependencies required to run the RENEW scripts (i.e., runs the following install scripts:
WARNING: After the experiment expires, EVERYTHING in your HOME directory is deleted. Make sure you create a disk image or download your collected data before this happens.
You are now ready to start using the RENEW software. See the RENEW quick start guide for a step-by-step tutorial.
For the most updated information on POWDER's deployment, please refer to their site.
The POWDER team has provided a map of their deployment. This map shows the locations of the available massive MIMO base stations and the UEs. Every POWDER user has access to this equipment.