OpenAirInterface: A Flexible Platform for 5G Research

Navid Nikaein, Mahesh K. Marina, Saravana Manickam, Alex Dawson, Raymond Knopp, Christian Bonnet

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle


Driven by the need to cope with exponentially growing mobile data traffic and to support new traffic types from massive numbers of machine-type devices, academia and industry are thinking beyond the current generation of mobile cellular networks to chalk a path towards fifth generation (5G) mobile networks. Several new approaches and technologies are being considered as potential elements making up such a future mobile network, including cloud RANs, application of SDN principles, exploiting new and unused portions of spectrum, use of massive MIMO and full-duplex communications. Research on these technologies requires realistic and flexible experimentation platforms that offer a wide range of experimentation modes from real-world experimentation to controlled and scalable evaluations while at the same time retaining backward compatibility with current generation systems. Towards this end, we present OpenAirInterface (OAI) as a suitably flexible platform. In addition, we discuss the use of OAI in the context of several widely mentioned 5G research directions.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)33-38
Number of pages6
JournalComputer Communication Review
Issue number5
Publication statusPublished - 1 Oct 2014


  • 4g/5g mobile networks, emulation, experimentation, lte, openairinterface, software-defined radio (sdr) platform


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