ADI, Marvell team for Open RAN Massive mMIMO radio

ADI, Marvell team for Open RAN Massive mMIMO radio

Business news |
By Nick Flaherty

Analog Devices has extended its partnership with Marvell Technology for a next-generation 5G massive MIMO (mMIMO) reference design platform with support for Open RAN.

The design uses ADI’s latest RadioVerse transceiver SoC and the Marvell OCTEON 10 Fusion 5G baseband processor, the industry’s first 5nm digital beamforming solution for 5G. This has up to 40% lower energy consumption, smaller size, and lower weight than previous designs.

The OCTEON 10 Fusion baseband processor also provides flexible L1 implementation, with hardware and software reuse across the RU (Radio Unit) and DU (Distributed Unit) to facilitate evolving L1 splits among operators worldwide over the coming years, while the RadioVerse SoC provides extensive digital RF front end capabilities.

The reference design, which is expandable to support a 64T64R configuration, supports 32 transmit and receive antennas (32T32R) with 400MHz of operational bandwidth and 300MHz of instantaneous bandwidth.

The baseband processor and transceiver both use hardware accelerators as well as the industry-leading RF and digital baseband process nodes shipping commercially – 5nm and 16nm respectively – delivering up to 40% reduction in energy consumption per bit as compared over the previous generation. The platform enables Network Energy Savings (NES) modes, which deliver additional power savings.

The ADRV9040 RadioVerse Transceiver SoC includes substantial digital capabilities including linearisation algorithms for boosting power amplifier efficiency and performance, as well as digital channel filters which reduce interface rates.

The OCTEON 10 Fusion 5G baseband processor has specialised accelerators optimised for efficiently processing complex beamforming algorithms, along with dedicated processors for the low PHY baseband which can be configured for the various O-RAN split 7.2x configurations.

“Infrastructure vendors face many challenges when developing O-RAN mMIMO radio units, including access to optimised semiconductors,” said Joe Barry, Vice President of Marketing, Systems & Technology in the Communication and Cloud Business Unit at ADI. “The performance and efficiency of this platform makes industry-leading technology available to both established and emerging vendors.” 

“Marvell is pleased to collaborate with ADI in taking mMIMO radios to the next level,” said Will Chu, Senior Vice President, Processors Business Group at Marvell. “The combination of Marvell’s OCTEON 10 Fusion 5G baseband processor and ADI’s leading RF transceiver technology provides OEMs a 5G Open Radio Unit reference design that scales the capabilities and performance of next-generation mMIMO beamforming at the lowest possible power.”

“As mMIMO radio functionality grows in complexity, more specialised silicon approaches are required,” said Alex Jinsung Choi, Chairman of the O-RAN ALLIANCE. “Reference designs like the one created by ADI and Marvell help catalyse the O-RAN market for 5G mMIMO radio units by enabling advanced configurations that meet network operators’ high expectations for power efficiency and performance.”

The platform is on display at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2023 in Barcelona next week.;

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