PA Consulting creates mobile basestation with Raspberry Pi

Dec 22, 2012
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PA Consulting has created a mobile phone basestation using the Raspberry Pi. In doing so, they replaced a giant 30-foot GSM cell basestation that is scarcely larger than your Internet modem. The consulting group based in Cambridge, UK, detail briefly how they achieved this in a video that you can watch after the jump.

According to the consulting firm's team, a variety of wireless experts using the Raspberry Pi, a radio interface, and a couple pieces of open source software create the mobile basestation. As you can see in the video, the team uses two cell phones and successfully has them communicate with each other. The purpose?

To show that it can be done, and for a very small price. "We've shrunk a 30ft basestation into a 3-inch Raspberry Pi and created our own mobile phone network. This proves what can be achieved through low cost, off the shelf systems." Of course, they had to do this in a screened room in order to avoid running afoul of the law.

The system is run using three applications: OpenBTS, FreeSWITCH, and a script for assigning telephone numbers. OpenBTS is used for providing the GSM standard, while FreeSWITCH is used to route calls "in a similar way to Skype," the consulting firm explains. Condescending a 30-foot tower into a 3-inch Raspberry Pi is perhaps the epitome of demonstrating low-cost solutions for the future.

[via New Electronics]


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