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Title: software-defined radios: architecture, state-of-the-art, and challenges.

Abstract: Software-defined Radio (SDR) is a programmable transceiver with the capability of operating various wireless communication protocols without the need to change or update the hardware. Progress in the SDR field has led to the escalation of protocol development and a wide spectrum of applications, with more emphasis on programmability, flexibility, portability, and energy efficiency, in cellular, WiFi, and M2M communication. Consequently, SDR has earned a lot of attention and is of great significance to both academia and industry. SDR designers intend to simplify the realization of communication protocols while enabling researchers to experiment with prototypes on deployed networks. This paper is a survey of the state-of-the-art SDR platforms in the context of wireless communication protocols. We offer an overview of SDR architecture and its basic components, then discuss the significant design trends and development tools. In addition, we highlight key contrasts between SDR architectures with regards to energy, computing power, and area, based on a set of metrics. We also review existing SDR platforms and present an analytical comparison as a guide to developers. Finally, we recognize a few of the related research topics and summarize potential solutions.
Subjects: Networking and Internet Architecture (cs.NI); Performance (cs.PF)
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Software Defined Radio in Communications

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software defined radio research papers

  • M. M. Kaidenko   ORCID: orcid.org/0000-0002-1428-9904 37 &
  • D. V. Roskoshnyi   ORCID: orcid.org/0000-0002-4432-6630 37  

Part of the book series: Lecture Notes in Electrical Engineering ((LNEE,volume 560))

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  • The International Conference on Information and Telecommunication Technologies and Radio Electronics

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The abstract should summarize the contents of the paper in short terms, i.e. 150–250 words. The chapter covers Software defined radio systems and their usage in telecommunications. The presented results are based on relevant studies of authors conducted at the Institute of Telecommunication systems of “Igor Sikorsky Kyiv Polytechnic Institute”. Features of the modern Software-defined radio systems were analyzed. The architecture of Software defined radio system that is based on architecture of communication software was substantiated. The architecture that is oriented on realization of Cognitive Radio System was proposed. The creation process of Software defined radio system based on SDR Transceiver and technologies of System-on-chip using modern means of software oriented modeling was described in details. The variants of interaction between processor cores and programmable logic in the system on the crystal during creation of Software defined radio system were considered. The publication is addressed to scientists, graduate students, and developers of radiocommunication equipment.

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National Technical University of Ukraine “Igor Sikorsky Kyiv Polytechnic Institute”, Peremoga Avenue 37, Kyiv, 03056, Ukraine

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Kaidenko, M.M., Roskoshnyi, D.V. (2019). Software Defined Radio in Communications. In: Ilchenko, M., Uryvsky, L., Globa, L. (eds) Advances in Information and Communication Technologies. UKRMICO 2018. Lecture Notes in Electrical Engineering, vol 560. Springer, Cham. https://doi.org/10.1007/978-3-030-16770-7_11

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Software-Defined Radio—Basics and Evolution to Cognitive Radio

  • Friedrich K Jondral 1  

EURASIP Journal on Wireless Communications and Networking volume  2005 , Article number:  652784 ( 2005 ) Cite this article

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We provide a brief overview over the development of software-defined or reconfigurable radio systems. The need for software-defined radios is underlined and the most important notions used for such reconfigurable transceivers are thoroughly defined. The role of standards in radio development is emphasized and the usage of transmission mode parameters in the construction of software-defined radios is described. The software communications architecture is introduced as an example for a framework that allows an object-oriented development of software-defined radios. Cognitive radios are introduced as the next step in radio systems' evolution. The need for cognitive radios is exemplified by a comparison of present and advanced spectrum management strategies.

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Jondral, F.K. Software-Defined Radio—Basics and Evolution to Cognitive Radio. J Wireless Com Network 2005 , 652784 (2005). https://doi.org/10.1155/WCN.2005.275

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  • software-defined radio
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Software-Defined Radio Demonstrators: An Example and Future Trends

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The Increasing number of Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) applications has led industries to design the physical layer (PHY) of these networks following the IEEE 802.15.4 standard. The traditional design of that layer is on hardware suffering from a lack of flexibility of radio parameters, such as changing both frequency bands and modulations. This problem is emphasized by the scarcity of the radio-frequency spectrum. Software Defined Radio (SDR) is an attracting solution to easily reconfigure radio parameters. In addition to SDR, a cognitive radio concept can be proposed by spectrum sensing and Dynamic Spectrum Access (DSA) both to overcome the spectrum scarcity problem. This thesis proposes a new SDR solution for WSNs based on the IEEE 802.15.4 standard. Our aim is to characterize an SDR platform that implements two standardized PHY layers and cognitive radio for WSNs. In this thesis, we carried out SDR implementations using a GNU Radio and Universal Software Peripheral Radio (USRP...

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Software Defined Radio: Past, Present, and Future

software defined radio research papers

The Past—30 Years of Software Defined Radios

It’s hard to believe that the term “software defined radio” (SDR) has been around for about 30 years. That’s a long time in the technology world. SDR, still a common topic of discussion, carries more than its share of misconceptions. SDR is “a radio in which some or all of the physical-layer functions are software defined,” per the Wireless Innovation Forum (formerly the SDR Forum). The term focuses on the physical (PHY) layer processing of the waveform and is not related to the radio frequency (RF) front end, which is a common misconception.

Thirty years later, SDR is now a dominant industry standard. From military tactical radios to cellular handsets, it’s almost a given that a radio is an SDR. There will continue to be innovations in semiconductor and software technology that drive higher development productivity and more cost-effective products, so SDRs are poised to maintain their standing. These factors mean that SDR is really a solved problem, and radios are now evolving to become frequency-agile intelligent communication systems.

The Present—Software Defined Radio Becomes the De Facto Industry Standard

In markets such as signals intelligence (SIGINT) , electronic warfare , test and measurement, public-safety communications, spectrum monitoring, and military communications (MILCOM) , SDRs have become the de facto industry standard. Some of these markets were using hardwired application-specific integrated circuits (ASICs), while others were already using programmable digital signal processors (DSPs). Figure 1 shows the progress of SDR adoption through the last 30 years. Closest to the center, the dark teal section is representative of the first set of markets to move from hardware radio architectures to SDR architectures, regardless of whether they used the term SDR.

The technology that drove the move to SDR in these markets was the advent of RF integrated circuits (RFICs) from companies like Analog Devices and cost-effective DSP-intensive FPGAs from companies like Xilinx. These two technologies came together to meet a multibillion dollar need in the military tactical radio market, creating something of a “market ripple,” where the market had a huge impact on the evolution of SDR technology far beyond just the MILCOM market. The Joint Tactical Radio System (JTRS) program funded the development and productization of SDR for military radios, which created a strong ecosystem of vendors including semiconductors, tools, and software companies. On the tools front, SDR required waveforms to be as portable as possible between different hardware platforms, which resulted in tools like the Software Communications Architecture (SCA) Core Framework, as well as better programming tools from electronic design automation (EDA) and semiconductor companies.

software defined radio research papers

Figure 1: Successive generations of SDRs have come to dominate the radio industry and will continue to evolve.

The Future—Next Generation of Software Defined Radios

What’s next for SDR? As the ubiquity of 4G handsets has propelled SDRs, the prospects of emerging technologies such as 5G , the Internet of Things (IoT), and sensor networks promise to again increase the volume of SDRs by another order of magnitude. What will be the technology driver lifting SDR to these lofty heights? As with previous leaps in SDR adoption, it will likely be a combination of both hardware and software technologies.

One of the next technology drivers in hardware looks to be the combination of analog and digital technology onto a single monolithic chip to reduce cost and size, weight, and power (SWaP). For infrastructure, this driver could be FPGAs with integrated analog-to-digital converters (ADCs) and digital-to-analog converters (DACs). For handsets and sensors, this could be application processors, also with integrated ADCs and DACs.

New innovations in hardware won’t be very useful, however, if the software and tools don’t follow. That is the whole point of SDR, after all. To enable the development of these chips, as well as the waveforms and application software running on them, there will be a requirement for better system-level tools that can be used to design and debug across the analog and digital domains. As SDRs become used for increasingly complex tasks, they are being designed with more powerful FPGAs designed for intensive DSP (Figure 2). As a result, there is an inevitable growing need for FPGA tools that can handle rapidly increasing amounts of data and complexity.

software defined radio research papers

Figure 2: The number of DSP slices in each subsequent FPGA generation continues to grow rapidly.

While general-purpose processors (GPPs) have served the SDR community well in the past, they are struggling to meet the performance required for areas like 5G and MILCOM. Software tools such as the LabVIEW FPGA Module and RF Network on Chip (RFNoC) offer a streamlined user experience that makes FPGA programming vastly more efficient.

Ultimately, integration will drive the next generation of SDRs. The integration of analog and digital technology into mixed-signal chips will be key, but SDRs have fundamentally reached a point where the primary limitation on growth is in software, not hardware. Without software development environments that can seamlessly program both GPPs and FPGAs, the additional hardware features of next-generation SDRs will be underused, and development will stall. The ability of tools like  LabVIEW FPGA  to enable wireless engineers who are not HDL experts to develop and rapidly iterate on sophisticated designs offer the best opportunity moving forward to unlock the next generation of SDRs.

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COMMENTS

  1. Software-defined Radios: Architecture, state-of-the-art, and challenges

    Software-defined Radio (SDR) is a programmable transceiver with the capability of operating various wireless communication protocols without the need to change or update the hardware. Progress in the SDR field has led to the escalation of protocol development and a wide spectrum of applications, with a greater emphasis on programmability ...

  2. Software-defined Radios: Architecture, State-of-the-art, and Challeng

    Internet of Things Research Lab, Department of Computer Engineering, Santa Clara University, USA Email: [email protected], [email protected] Abstract—Software-defined Radio (SDR) is a programmable transceiver with the capability of operating various wireless communication protocols without the need to change or update the hardware.

  3. Software defined radio: Operation, challenges and possible solutions

    This paper introduces MELODY, a model and classification framework tailored explicitly for Software Defined Radio (SDR) remote laboratories. This model is characterized by its technology-agnostic ...

  4. Software defined radio (SDR) foundations, technology tradeoffs: A

    Software radio has emerged as a focus of both academic research and commercial development for future wireless systems. This paper briefly reviews the foundation concepts of the Software Radio. It then characterizes the tradeoffs among core software-radio technologies. Object oriented analysis leads to the definition of the radio reference platform and the related layered object-oriented ...

  5. [1804.06564] Software-defined Radios: Architecture, State-of-the-art

    Software-defined Radio (SDR) is a programmable transceiver with the capability of operating various wireless communication protocols without the need to change or update the hardware. Progress in the SDR field has led to the escalation of protocol development and a wide spectrum of applications, with more emphasis on programmability, flexibility, portability, and energy efficiency, in cellular ...

  6. A comprehensive evaluation of software-defined radio ...

    This paper evaluated the practical limits of Software-Defined Radio (SDR) devices and the impact of virtualization on receiving and transmitting samples, particularly in an Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM) application. The study tested the sampling rate at which the USRP B200 and N200 devices can transmit and receive samples.

  7. Software defined radio: Operation, challenges and possible solutions

    Software Defined Radio (SDR) or Software Radio is one of the most important technologies for the modern wireless communication system. SDR is a radio which can tune to any frequency band, implement different modulation and demodulation schemes and different standards in the same device by using reconfigurable hardware and powerful software. SDR provides flexible, upgradeable, multi-standard ...

  8. Software-defined radio: a brief overview

    This paper overviews the software-defined radio (SDR), also called software radio (SR), refers to wireless communication in which the transmitter modulation is generated or defined by a computer. The receiver then also uses a computer to recover the signal intelligence. SDR is an enabling technology that is useful in a wide range of areas within wireless systems. The primary goal of SDR is to ...

  9. Software Defined Radio in Communications

    The abstract should summarize the contents of the paper in short terms, i.e. 150-250 words. The chapter covers Software defined radio systems and their usage in telecommunications. The presented results are based on relevant studies of authors conducted at the...

  10. Software Defined Radio: Basic Principles and Applications

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  12. Software-defined Radios: Architecture, state-of-the-art, and challenges

    Software-defined Radio (SDR) is a programmable transceiver with the capability of operating various wireless communication protocols without the need to change or update the hardware. Progress in the SDR field has led to the escalation of protocol development and a wide spectrum of applications, with a greater emphasis on programmability ...

  13. Software-Defined Radio—Basics and Evolution to Cognitive Radio

    We provide a brief overview over the development of software-defined or reconfigurable radio systems. The need for software-defined radios is underlined and the most important notions used for such reconfigurable transceivers are thoroughly defined. The role of standards in radio development is emphasized and the usage of transmission mode parameters in the construction of software-defined ...

  14. (PDF) Software-defined Radios: Architecture, State-of-the-art, and

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  18. [PDF] Software-defined Radios: Architecture, State-of-the-art, and

    2020. TLDR. This research paper will take the reader the concept of software defined radio architecture with the support of basic experimental set up worked in the university research lab with the help of National Instruments NI 2920 Software Defined Radio kit. Expand. Highly Influenced.

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    Software Defined Radio (SDR) may provide flexible, upgradeable and longer lifetime radio equipment for the military and for civilian wireless communications infrastructure. SDR may also provide more flexible and possibly cheaper multi-standard-terminals for end users. It is also important as a convenient base technology for the future context-sensitive, adaptive and learning radio units ...

  20. Software Defined Radio: Past, Present, and Future

    It's hard to believe that the term "software defined radio" (SDR) has been around for about 30 years. That's a long time in the technology world. SDR, still a common topic of discussion, carries more than its share of misconceptions. SDR is "a radio in which some or all of the physical-layer functions are software defined," per the ...

  21. (PDF) Software-defined radio: A brief overview

    Abstract. This paper overviews the software-defined radio (SDR), also called software radio (SR), refers to wireless communication in which the transmitter modulation is generated or defined by a ...

  22. Applications of software-defined radio (SDR) technology in hospital

    A software-defined radio (SDR) is a radio communication system where the major part of its functionality is implemented by means of software in a personal computer or embedded system. Such a design paradigm has the major advantage of producing devices that can receive and transmit widely different radio protocols based solely on the software used. This flexibility opens several application ...

  23. (PDF) Software Defined Radio: A Brief Introduction

    Introduction. A radio is a system with technology for transferring information wirelessly by me ans of. electromagnetic radiation [1]. In the past a radi o was composed of many discrete circuits ...