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SB4 and Grid LTE Deployment

Sandbox 4 now has SDRs which are capable of acting as LTE UE or eNBs for experimentation. Two commercial basestations are attached as well. In addition, an LTE EPC is available for interoperability tests and experimentation. Finally, a number of COTS UEs are available as client devices. More details are available at the following wiki pages:


The ORBIT Grid domain now has a USRP based massive-MIMO setup available for experiments. The first corner rack (located under node20-1) is complete and contains eight 10MHz and PPS synchronized Ettus USRP X310 software defined radios outfitted with two UBX 160 radio daughterboards each. These USRPs appear as nodes 23-1 through 23-8. More information is available in the wiki page for the Grid domain.

Replacement of Noise Injection System

Hi everyone,

Just a heads up, we are replacing components of the noise injection system, and so it will unavailable until further notice.

Thank you, -Mike Sherman

New (Gen 4) Nodes

Just a short notice to announce the arrival of the 4th generation of ORBIT nodes ( ): sb1 now has two lower-power gen4 nodes (which unfortunately means that we don’t have original ORBIT nodes in any of the sandboxes anymore), while high-powered gen4 nodes replaced gen3 nodes supporting USRP X310s in the main grid. Unfortunately, in addition to being faster, new nodes also require more modern kernels (we are still looking into whether we can backport all the necessary drivers) which means that older images, including current Ubuntu 12.04 based baseline.ndz won't work with the new nodes. Currently, the only image that works with these new nodes is baseline-gen4.ndz (that image will also work with all gen3 nodes but will not boot properly on the gen1 and gen2 nodes - newer Ubuntu distributions don’t support non-pae platforms suggesting the end of universal images that run on all ORBIT nodes).

DARPA Spectrum Challenge and ORBIT

Hi everybody,

As some of you have already heard (and are hopefully participating), the ORBIT testbed will be hosting the upcoming DARPA Spectrum Challenge ( While this is great opportunity for our community to show creativity, it also means that (especially in the early rounds) challenge teams will have priority in scheduling access to resources. More pointedly, in the next 4 weeks, the grid and some sandboxes will be reserved up to 16 hours a day exclusively for the Challenge. This will be reflected on the scheduler as blocked time on the grid (you will notice large number of new virtual resources on the scheduler as well) - please refrain from using ORBIT during these hours. Also, in preparation for the actual start of the challenge we will be a.) retiring omf-5.3; b.) pruning the image repository (please delete all images; we will delete all images that have not been touched in the last 6 months); and c.) enhancing the USRP resources available on ORBIT.

Sorry for any inconvenience