Inria Sophia Antipolis R2lab demo: a 4G network deployed remotely in three minutes

Publish on 17/01/2020
R2lab, the FIT team’s new testbed, was inaugurated on 9 November by Antoine Petit, CEO of Inria, in the presence of many scientists. Its new anechoic chamber can be used to remotely perform reproducible wireless network experimentation (5G/software-defined radio). R2lab, managed by the DIANA project-team led by Walid Dabbous and the centre’s Development and Experimentation department, presented a 4G network being deployed remotely in merely three minutes
Salle anéchoïde
© Inria / Photo C. Morel

The Inria Sophia Antipolis –Méditerranée centre’s new anechoic chamber, named R2lab (Reproducible Research LABoratory) is a FIT (Future Internet of Things) national Equipex component. R2lab offers several types of communication resources, wireless networks and sensor and computation cloud networks, which are available to researchers and manufacturers for experimentation purposes. It forms part of the OneLab (Open Numerical Engineering LABoratory ) European network.

Booked and used remotely

The R2lab anechoic chamber can be used to remotely perform reproducible wireless network experimentation (5G/software-defined radio). It is intended for use by all teams and can be booked and used remotely.

It is already shared by University of Côte d’Azur (UCA) partners including the UCN Labex, in collaboration with the anechoic chamber of LEAT and Orange, which is also located on the SophiaTech campus.

At the hardware level, R2lab uses standard Wi-Fi nodes and cost-effective software-defined radio nodes. R2lab provides experimentation support software tools that can be used to deploy comprehensive scenarios including an end-to-end network infrastructure and not merely a point-to-point link between two nodes. Using Eurecom’s Open Air Interface tool, R2lab can deploy a complete 5G network infrastructure and remote access for performing reproducible end-to-end network experimentation with no external interference.

Complementary bodies

During the inauguration, the different participants emphasised the complementarity of the bodies, internationally (Max Ott of Data61 in Australia), in France with CorteXlab (Tanguy Risset of Inria Grenoble Rhône-Alpes) and within UCA (Sylvie Mellet). Walid Dabbous of Inria Sophia Antipolis – Méditerranée then presented R2lab, and Raymond Knopp of Eurecom presented the Open Air Interface alliance.

The event closed with a public demonstration of R2lab’s ability to deploy a 4G network remotely in merely three minutes!