Evenstar Remote Radio Head project aims to speed Open RAN adoption

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Mavenir's launch is in collaboration with AceAxis, Facebook Connectivity, Parallel Wireless, MTI, Deutsche Telekom, Vodafone, and other partners.

According to Mavenir, the Evenstar programme will contribute to the OpenRAN ecosystem by focusing on building general-purpose RAN reference designs for 4G and 5G networks that are aligned with 3GPP and O-RAN specifications and will help accelerate the adoption of TIP OpenRAN Project Group Solutions.

Santiago Tenorio, the new Chair of TIP, said the organisation would define the radio unit at the TIP Summit last November. He described it as a “killer” radio because it is so crucial to operators. It is one of a number of collaboration announcements made this week by TIP, which would have been made at MWC.

The Evenstar Remote Radio Head (RRH) will be available in mid-2020 as part of the Evenstar programme with plans to expand into other Open RAN architectural elements. RRHs, distribution units, and control unit software were previously available as a packaged unit, limiting opportunities to serve suburban and rural locations.

By decoupling these components, the Evenstar programme is intended to allow mobile operators to choose best-in-class technology and deploy solutions from an increasing number of technology partners.

Eventually the Evenstar family is expected to include multiple RRH product SKUs, including FDD B3 (4T4R 4X40W) and B28 2T4R 2x80W. The RRH will support the O-RAN Central Unit-Distributed Unit (CU-DU) architectural split known as 7.2.

Collaboration is key

“With Project Evenstar, Facebook Connectivity is collaborating with Mavenir and other ecosystem organizations to support building RAN hardware components for 4G and 5G networks,” said Dan Rabinovitsj, Vice President for Facebook Connectivity. “A healthy ecosystem of OpenRAN vendors plays an important role in emerging deployments for 4G and 5G networks based on open architectures addressing various deployment scenarios and use cases.”

Abdurazak Mudesir, SVP Technology Architecture & Innovation, Deutsche Telekom, commented, “To benefit from next generation, open, disaggregated RAN solutions that can be implemented in various deployment scenarios for 4G and 5G networks, it is important for Deutsche Telekom to work with innovative partners driving O-RAN compliant technology.

"This collaboration between the O-RAN and TIP communities is an important contribution to grow that ecosystem and accelerate the commercialization of Open RAN technology.”