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Skolkovo Institute of Science and Technology (Skoltech) and Russian mobile giant MTS have joined forces to launch a 5G network pilot.

The pilot will be launched at the Skolkovo innovation center and aims to primarily focus on industrial ICT solutions. The new network is expected to accelerate local innovation in the 5G space and provide greater coverage in the 4.9GHz band which will be supported by a base station which feature software developed at Skoltech that supports the global OpenRAN standard.

MTS VP for Cloud and Digital Solutions, Dmitry Khalin, said, “The launch of this 5G zone is a further step forward in our long history of joint R&D with Skoltech and Skolkovo resident companies. MTS is at the leading edge of connectivity, operating multiple R&D centers as well as a 5G lab and startup accelerator.”

He added, “This project brings together the world-class engineering and IT expertise of all of the partners, and I am confident it will accelerate the launch of locally developed telecoms solutions and industrial 5G services.”

Dmitry Lakontsev, Head of Skoltech-based NTI Center of Excellence in Wireless and IoT Technologies, said, “The joint MTS-Skoltech 5G network is the next phase in the local development of telecom infrastructure. We developed the base station providing coverage at our institute around the advanced OpenRan architecture.”

“Together with MTS, we plan to continue to move forward on OpenRAN, including thoroughly testing the interoperability of Russian-developed 5G hardware and software with operator systems and subscriber devices,” he continued.

“As a 5G testing ground, Skolkovo has a unique role to play in providing access to real-world scenarios, requirements, and the new technologies at the center of the ecosystem. We have all of the right resources to support our partners’ efforts in accelerating industrial innovation,” said Arkady Dvorkovich, Chairman of the Skolkovo Foundation.

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