The Open Base Station Architecture Initiative (OBSAI), a leading industry forum established in order to create a suite of open specifications for base station architectures, has today announced a doubling of the maximum data rate capability of its baseband to RF module (RP3) interface. This new higher data rate further enhances OBSAI’s support for emerging 4G architectures and services and also allows both existing and future RF modules to be ‘daisy-chained’, thereby saving cabling costs in distributed base-station deployments. The new data rate capability of OBSAI has been achieved by incorporating aspects of the Serial RapidIO (SRIO) standard within the OBSAI RP3 specification, thereby leveraging the considerable industry support already in place for the SRIO standard. To accommodate a higher data rate, the existing OBSAI electrical specification has been extended to include relevant parts of the SRIO standard and it can now support a data rate of up to 6144Mbps. The increasing requirements for higher line-rates for the RP3 link were also driven by the desire to be able to ‘daisy-chain’ remote radio heads, for both 3G and 4G applications. Daisy chaining allows remote radio heads to be connected in series rather than each one requiring a direct connection back to the base station – this saves significantly on electrical cable or fibre optic cable in such installations, driving efficiency savings for the operator. “The OBSAI and RapidIO associations were able to partner to leverage an existing and proven standard with SRIO to make the standard future-proof for new technologies,” said Peter Kenington, Technical Chair of OBSAI. “The widespread adoption of OBSAI specifications has stimulated innovation in the industry and enables groundbreaking infrastructure solutions to find their way into OEM products more easily. OBSAI is not restricted to a single OEM, this also helps to diversify the product development risk and eases testing and training.” Tom Cox, Executive Director of RapidIO Trade Association Inc, commented, “We are pleased to have worked with OBSAI to align our technology to build a future-proof base station architecture for LTE and other emerging technologies. We believe that an open standard approach will help base station system builders obtain best-of-breed primary components from a greater variety of potential suppliers.” OBSAI thanks its growing membership for their dedicated work in fostering the OBSAI open standards to drive innovation. It is a first in this area of the OEM base station industry that two major standards organisations have partnered in this way.