"Over 3,600 developers are currently involved in efforts to create apps, called Snaps, for LimeSDR, with several free and paid-for apps having already appeared on the open community LimeSDR App store."
"By ‘open sourcing’ Lime Microsystems’ 5G and IoT capable SDR base station design, Lime and Canonical are looking to effectively ‘commoditise’ network hardware and shift the value centre towards software."
"Commoditised base stations allow any enterprise to run their own base station and get spectrum from their operators as a service. Base stations can have new form factors as well, like being embedded into vending machines or attached to drones."
"Lime Microsystems’ upcoming LimeNET Network-in-a-Box base station will support Ubuntu Core host systems. The open source micro base station is based on the Ubuntu Core ready LimeSDR SBC for software defined radio, which was a big hit on CrowdSupply..."
"'Radio access technology for wide area networks accounts for a significant portion of the overall deployment cost,' said Lime CEO Ebrahim Bushehri. 'We’re seeking to make the hardware an open-source commodity sold for a fraction of current offerings...'"
"LimeNET Mini - A software defined radio small cell network in a box for mobile and IoT applications, based on an Intel i7 processor and... LimeSDR. This combination makes it an ideal implementation for high data rate communication applications...”
"LimeNET base stations hold the potential to completely transform the way telco networks run, shifting the emphasis and value away from proprietary hardware to open hardware with app stores on top."
"The LimeNET Mini is an app enabled, small cell base station... It is ideal for developing residential SDR applications--like IoT. The more-powerful LimeNET version is for carrier-class wide area network deployments."
"With Lime Microsystems [EE] is delivering a software defined radio base to Open Source, and hopes to attract developers to build applications on top of the Lime SDR platform."
"[Limenet seeks] to make the hardware an open-source commodity sold for a fraction of current offerings, with the real value being in the software it runs. Doing it this way would effectively turn LTE, GSM or LoRa, or even 5G, into just an app.”
"The three new platforms for developers, enterprise networks and carriers; uses among the most advanced radio technologies to dramatically cut the cost of wireless innovation, and change the way networks are developed."
Vodafone, a key global operator, is backing LimeNET and supporting us to take our software defined radio technology mainstream with operator deployments. Read the full update here.
Our mission is to democratise wireless innovation. Last year, we launched the LimeSDR campaign as the first step towards this goal. Now, we are launching LimeNET, a new campaign that offers the community a line of pre-qualified hardware with integrated LimeSDR technology. There are three main LimeNET hardware stacks: Mini, Enterprise, and Base Station - all of them are pre-qualified to work with the recently announced Ubuntu App Stores, so you can easily find, share, and publish apps specifically written with LimeSDR technology in mind.
If you’ve been following the LimeSDR project, here’s a summary of what’s new in LimeNET:
Read on for details!
LimeNET extends LimeSDR’s open source software-defined radio ecosystem by offering an array of standard LimeSDR-based hardware configurations on which you can run Ubuntu Core to find, share, publish, and deploy pre-packaged applications (“snaps”). The idea is to replace specialized, closed equipment, software, and knowledge with open source software and commodity hardware. LimeNET is an open alternative to the incumbent, closed wireless model.
|LimeNET Open Model||Incumbent Closed Model|
|Chipset||Readily available and open source software||Closed and proprietary with vendor lock-in|
|Radio Hardware||Readily available and open source||Closed and highly specialised|
|Baseband & Digital||General-purpose motherboards||Proprietary ASICs|
|Software||App-based with worldwide developer network||Closed and expensive with vendor lock-in|
|Deployment & Maintenance||Uses general IT skillset and commodity hardware||Highly specialised and requires OEM support|
LimeNET is the next step in the evolution of software defined radio. What you actually use it for is completely up to your imagination (and the imagination of thousands of other developers). Broadly speaking, LimeNET is a great option for any application that is a convergence of wireless technologies, such as:
For example, at Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2017, there was a demonstration of a complete 4G network running on a commodity laptop connected to a software-defined radio dongle (a LimeSDR!) streaming HD video to standard, off-the-shelf smart phones. Several aspects of this demo were unique:
This is just one example. There are plenty of others involving HAM, radio astronomy, AM/FM, GNSS, and more.
In this campaign, we’re offering the LimeNET Mini, LimeNET Enterprise, LimeNET Base Station, and many of their constituent components.
Complete with an integrated LimeSDR USB micro Type-B with added shielding, this mini PC will get you up and running with the LimeNET app store in no time.
The LimeNET Mini available both with and without the LimeSDR USB micro Type-B board and associated cabling and antennas pre-installed - complete and bare versions, respectively. You can use an external LimeSDR USB board with a bare version simply be using one of the LimeNET Mini’s external USB ports. However, internally integrating your own LimeSDR within the LimeNET Mini is not supported, as it requires careful soldering to add the RF shielding necessary to protect the integrity of the RF signals from noise from the mini PC. In fact, the bare version’s enclosure doesn’t even include room for an integrated LimeSDR.
As a token of appreciation to our early LimeSDR backers, we’re making available for a limited time the bare (i.e., without integrated LimeSDR) version of the LimeNET Mini computer at a $400 discount off its standard campaign price. This offer is only available to backers of the LimeSDR USB boards (Type-A, micro Type-B, Aluminum Kit, and respective early birds) who ordered before the launch of the LimeNET campaign (before May 23, 2017). You can take advantage of this discount by entering your original LimeSDR order number in the comments field of your order for a LimeNET Mini. This discount is available until July 13, 2017. Thank you for your early support!
LimeNET Mini ports layout
|1. USB 3.0||1. Risecard connector|
|2. LAN||2. USB 3.1 Type-C|
|3. Mini DisplayPort|
|4. HDMI 2.0|
|5. DC input|
|6. SATA cable connector|
|8. USB 3.1 Type-A|
|9. 30-pin debug connector|
|10. Power connector|
This high-performance PC comes with an external LimeSDR with Aluminum Kit.
* The reduced-price version of LimeNET Enterprise without the LimeSDR with Aluminum Kit is available only to backers of the LimeSDR with Aluminum Kit who placed their order during the original LimeSDR campaign and pre-order period (April 28, 2016 - May 18, 2017). This special pricing is our way for thanking them for their early support and it is one small way we can try to make up for the late delivery of their units.
LimeNET Enterprise mainboard
|1. 2 x USB 2.0||13. M.2 2242/2260 M key slot|
|2. 2 x USB 3.0||14. battery connector|
|3. SD card reader slot||15. clear CMOS & power button|
|4. power button||16. 4 x USB 2.0|
|5. HDD LED||17. Ethernet port|
|6. power LED||18. DisplayPort|
|7. headphone||19. HDMI port|
|8. microphone input||20. DC power input|
|9. SATA cable connector||21. Intel H1 10 chipset|
|10. DDR4 SO-DIMM slots||22. LGA1151 package CPU socket|
|11. M.2 2230 A,E key slot||23. fan connector|
|12. debug connector||24. AC back auto power|
The LimeNET Base Station is a limited-edition, highly discounted combination of the LimeNET Core and LimeNET Amplifier Chassis detailed below. This is everything you need to set up your own cellular network, all in one compact package and with a savings of over $7,000.
A top-of-the-line gaming PC outfitted with a newly developed LimeSDR QPCIe board, the LimeNET Core is a software defined radio powerhouse.
The following image shows the current internal components of the LimeNET Core. The exact make and model of the RAM and SSD components may change based on availability at the time of manufacture.
|1. Intel Core i7 - 6950X Processor Extreme Edition|
|2. Crucial CT16G4DFD8213 64GB (4x 16GB) DDR4 2133 MHz|
|3. Pre-amp bracket: MIMO 15 db LNA, MIMO TX SAW filter, MIMO 20 db PA|
|4. GIGABYTE GV-N210SL-1GI graphics card with NVIDIA GeForce 210|
|5. Crucial MX300 SATA 3 internal 1 TB SSD w/ M.2 interface|
|6. Corsair CX750MW Power Supply Unit|
|7. LimeSDR QPCIe board|
|8. ASUS X99-M WS micro-ATX mainboard|
Designed to mate perfectly with LimeNET Core, the LimeNET Amplifier Chassis provides the necessary hardware to turn your SDR setup into a long range wireless network.
Whereas the LimeNET Mini and LimeNET Enterprise are based on the original LimeSDR USB boards (micro Type-B and Type-A, respectively), the LimeNET Core, and therefore the LimeNET Base Station, are based on the entirely new LimeSDR QPCIe board. This new board is a much more sophisticated version of the original LimeSDR PCIe board. In particular, it has two LMS7002 transceiver chips instead of one, which allows for a 4x4 MIMO configuration instead of a 2x2 MIMO configration.
LimeNET QPCIe board (front side)
|1. RF RX connectors||15. IC43 - EEPROM|
|2. J43, J42 - reference clock in and out||16. IC43 - FX3 flash boot jumper|
|3. LVDS interface||17. J28 - FPGA JTAG (0.1”)|
|4. IC40, J41 - GNSS receiver and antenna connector||18. SW2 - 4-bit switch|
|5. IC38 - FLASH memory||19. IC21, IC23 - FPGA configuration flash memory|
|6. J39, J38 - 2 x PMOD connectors||20. BATT1-RTC backup battery|
|7. LEDs||21. IC39 - temperature sensor|
|8. SW3 - power control switch||22. IC39 - temperature sensor|
|9. J44 - external 12 V power supply connector||23. RF RX connectors|
|10. J45 - 6-pin PCIe power connector||24. RF TX connectors|
|11. J31 - FX3 JTAG (0.05”)||25. RF PAs, switches, and connectors|
|12. IC34 - USB 3.0 controller (FX3)||26. IC1, IC4 - 2 x FPRF LMS7002M transceivers|
|13. J29 - USB 3.0 connector (micro Type-B)||27. RF TX connectors|
|14. IC35 - FX3 flash memory|
LimeNET QPCIe board (back side)
|1. IC49 - clock synthesizer|
|2. IC46 - phase detector|
|3. XO1-3 VCTXO|
|4. IC2, IC3, IC5, IC6-RF transceivers EEPROMs|
|5. IC42, real time clock|
Note: While you can use the LimeSDR QPCIe board with other computers, LimeNET Core and, by extension, LimeNET Base Station are the only complete systems we’ve tested and pre-qualified as part of the LimeNET ecosystem. Of course, we encourage developers to integrate LimeSDRs of all flavors into new hardware configurations, but our ability to support and maintain hardware configurations is currently limited to those in the LimeNET family.
LimeNET Gateway is a complete, certified, high-bandwidth cellular gateway that provides Wi-FI and Ethernet Internet connectivity backed by a connection to a 2G, 3G, or 4G macrocell. It provides users with downlink and uplink throughput of 150 and 50 Mbps, respectively, and can connect to any operator network with a SIM card (not included). Save $100 off the retail price.
LimeNET is built on a robust, community-driven software stack, including:
Check out our Ubuntu app stores for more information:
As with the original LimeSDR campaign, which has already delivered thousands of software-defined radios to developers worldwide, we will continue to use our established network of trusted manufacturing and assembly partners in Taiwan and the UK.
All LimeNET products have free worldwide shipping. Orders being shipped to the EU will ship from the UK. Orders being shipped outside of the EU will ship from Crowd Supply’s US-based fulfillment facility. The recipient is responsible for all import fees and duties. You can find out more about fulfillment in the Crowd Supply Guide.
A lot of time went into developing and testing everything offered in this campaign, so we are confident there is minimal risk involved. We of course face the usual risks associated with manufacturing (e.g., parts shortages).