Crosshaul project says Berlin tests deliver multi-Gbps over innovative architecture

Integrated fronthaul/backhaul tests show up well in Berlin tests. Could set stage for major change in industry direction, claims participant.

Three partners from the 5GPPP 5G-Crosshaul consortium have announced the results of an extended, real-world deployment of an integrated fronthaul/backhaul network delivering 5G throughput and latency.

Core Network Dynamics, InterDigital and Fraunhofer HH Institute said that they carried out tests of integrated millimeter wave (mmW) fronthaul/backhaul on a 5G testbed in Berlin and delivered higher Gbps throughput and less than millisecond latency.

The participants also found significance in the fact that they could, via integrated fronthaul/backhaul, provide a working model for future 5G networks that will combine a 4G architecture with a 5G fronthaul-based network edge. That’s because in this model 5G radio network solutions can be implemented using commodity servers or even in the cloud – a major innovation that throws open the doors for new operator models.

The 5G Berlin Testbed is a 5G field trial of InterDigital’s EdgeLink 60GHz solution and CND’s OpenEPC and eNodeB software over an integrated mmW mesh transport network. The system was installed outdoors from the end of September through November.

“Millimeter wave technology will be a decisive cornerstone to bring 5G forward to enhanced mobile broadband harvesting new spectrum opportunities well above 6GHz, ultra-dense deployments and energy-efficient multi-Gigabit transmission” explains Dr. Thomas Haustein, Head of Department for Wireless Communication and Networks at Fraunhofer HHI.

“The 5G Berlin Testbed will provide valuable information that can be used to help advance the evolving 5G standards and specifications. We are already adapting OpenEPC to support critical 5G requirements. These include a distributed core network, plus architectures to support C-RAN and the cloudification of the radio access network,” said Carsten Brinkschulte, CEO, Core Network Dynamics.

“This extended outdoor trial is the first example of a network edge architecture, tested in real-world conditions,” said, Alan Carlton, Vice President, InterDigital Europe. “Crosshaul’s major innovation may set the stage for a world where our definitions of what constitutes a network operator or infrastructure equipment are radically changed.”

5G-Crosshaul is an international project with 21 members aimed at developing integrated fronthaul and backhaul system solutions to support flexibility and unified management for 5G network architectures. To learn more about the project, visit