Millimeter Wave Experimentation in COSMOS SB1 with Xilinx RFSoC

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  • Panagiotis Skrimponis, New York University: ps3857[at]
  • Prasanthi Maddala, Rutgers University

Last updated: October 18, 2021



For more information about the integration of the advanced programmable and open-source millimeter wave array systems in COSMOS, please read:

  1. T. Chen, P. Maddala, P. Skrimponis, J. Kolodziejski, X. Gu, A. Paidimarri, S. Rangan, G. Zussman, and I. Seskar, "Programmable and open-access millimeter-wave radios in the PAWR COSMOS testbed," in Proc. ACM Mobicom'21 Workshop on Wireless Network Testbeds, Experimental evaluation & CHaracterization (WiNTECH'21) (to appear), 2021. Download
  2. D. Raychaudhuri, I. Seskar, G. Zussman, T. Korakis, D. Kilper, T. Chen, J. Kolodziejski, M. Sherman, Z. Kostic, X. Gu, H. Krishnaswamy, S. Maheshwari, P. Skrimponis, and C. Gutterman, "Challenge: COSMOS: A city-scale programmable testbed for experimentation with advanced wireless," in Proc. ACM Mobicom'20, 2020." ​ACM Download Presentation Long Video Short Video
  3. P. Skrimponis, P. Maddala, J. Kolodziejski, I. Seskar, and S. Rangan, "60 GHz Beam Tracking Testbed," Brooklyn 6G Summit, 2021. Presentation Video

Please cite the above papers if you use the hardware. Please email Panagiotis Skrimponis (ps3857[at] if you have any questions.

Experiment Setup


Follow the steps below to gain access to COSMOS sb1 and set up nodes with appropriate image:

  1. If you don't have a COSMOS account already, you need to sign up.
  2. Create a resource reservation on sb1.
  3. Login into sb1 using SSH.
    not_a_user@laptop:~$ ssh -Y
  4. Make sure all the nodes and devices of this reservation are turned off:
    your_username@console:~$ omf tell -a offh -t system:topo:allres
  5. Load the rfsoc_sivers_sb1.ndz on srv1-in1 and srv1-in2.
    your_username@console:~$ omf load -i rfsoc_sivers_sb1.ndz -t srv1-in1,srv1-in2
  6. Power on all the required resources.
    your_username@console:~$ omf tell -a on -t srv1-in1,srv1-in2,rfdev3-in1,rfdev3-in2,sdr2-in1,sdr2-in2
  7. Check the status of the nodes and devices of sb1.
    your_username@console:~$ omf stat -t system:topo:allres
  8. Configure the RF switches to connect RFSoC with Sivers array
    your_username@console:~$ curl ",,2,3,4&port=2"
  9. Make sure the RF switches are configured correctly (all switches set to port 2)
    your_username@console:~# curl,
    <response status="OK">
      <rf_switch name="" num_of_switches="4">
        <switch number="1" port="2"/>
        <switch number="2" port="2"/>
        <switch number="3" port="2"/>
        <switch number="4" port="2"/>
      <rf_switch name="" num_of_switches="4">
        <switch number="1" port="2"/>
        <switch number="2" port="2"/>
        <switch number="3" port="2"/>
        <switch number="4" port="2"/>

RFSoC Setup

Every time we power cycle the FPGAs, we need to download the firmware (i.e., linux image, rootfs, bistream) using the Xilinx XSCT tool over JTAG. Please note the this process will take around 5-10'.

your_username@console:~$ ssh -Y root@srv1-in1
root@srv1-in1:~$ cd mmwsdr/fpga/nonrt-ch1/jtag/sb1_sdr2_in1/
root@srv1-in1:~/mmwsdr/fpga/nonrt-ch1/jtag/sb1_sdr2_in1$ xsct download_firmware.tcl
your_username@console:~$ ssh -Y root@srv1-in2
root@srv1-in2:~$ cd mmwsdr/fpga/nonrt-ch1/jtag/sb1_sdr2_in2/
root@srv1-in2:~/mmwsdr/fpga/nonrt-ch1/jtag/sb1_sdr2_in2$ xsct download_firmware.tcl

Network Interface Setup

Using the information available in COSMOS WiKi we need to configure the ethernet interfaces.

First corner (1-1)
Device Control Network Data Network 1 Data Network 2
Support Server (srv1-in1) (srv1a-in1) (srv1b-in1)
RFSoC Device (sdr2-in1) (sdr2-in1a) (sdr2-in1b)
root@srv1-in1:~# ip link set enp1s0 mtu 9000 up
root@srv1-in1:~# ip link set enp3s0 mtu 9000 up
root@srv1-in1:~# ip addr add dev enp1s0
root@srv1-in1:~# ip addr add dev enp3s0
Second corner (20-20)
Device Control Network Data Network 1 Data Network 2
Support Server (srv1-in2) (srv1a-in2) (srv1b-in2)
RFSoC Device (sdr2-in2) (sdr2-in2a) (sdr2-in2b)
root@srv1-in2:~# ip link set enp1s0 mtu 9000 up
root@srv1-in2:~# ip link set enp3s0 mtu 9000 up
root@srv1-in2:~# ip addr add dev enp1s0
root@srv1-in2:~# ip addr add dev enp3s0

Environment Setup

To control the Sivers using a local connection we need to setup the FTDI drivers for every new ssh connection.

root@srv1-in1:~$ source ~/mmwsdr/host/scripts/

Software Update

Update the software:

root@srv1-in1:~$ cd mmwsdr
root@srv1-in1:~/mmwsdr$ git pull
root@srv1-in2:~$ cd mmwsdr
root@srv1-in2:~/mmwsdr$ git pull


In the following subsections, you can find detailed descriptions for each demo.


  • In this demo we control a single SDR. The script creates an SDR object that controls the Xilinx RFSoC FPGA eval board and Sivers IMA. A user can provide arguments to the script, such as the carrier frequency, the COSMOS node id and the transceiver mode. The script by default starts a local connection at srv1-in1 with a carrier frequency at 60.48 GHz in receive mode.
    root@srv1-in1:~/mmwsdr/host$ python ./demos/basic/ --freq 60.48e9 --node srv1-in1 --mode rx
  • The Python drivers of the Sivers library requires Python 2. One way to remove this dependence is to remotely control the Sivers array with an HTTP server. We can start the HTTP server as follows,
    root@srv1-in1:~/mmwsdr/host$ python ./mmwsdr/array/ -u SN0240
    root@srv1-in2:~/mmwsdr/host$ python ./mmwsdr/array/ -u SN0243


Channel Sounder

Array Pattern

Beam Tracking Measurements

Last modified 3 days ago Last modified on Jan 21, 2022, 2:47:48 PM

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