This chapter presents an overview of the ORBIT testbed for wireless experimentation. ORBIT is an NSF supported community testbed for wireless networking which provides a variety of programmable resources for at-scale reproducible experimentation as well as real-world outdoor trials. The centerpiece of the ORBIT testbed is the 400-node “radio grid” deployed at the Rutgers Tech Centre facility in North Brunswick, NJ. The radio grid enables researchers to conduct reproducible experiments with large numbers of wireless nodes over a wide range of radio technologies, densities and network topologies. The ORBIT system architecture is outlined and technical details are given for the radio grid’s key hardware and software components including the radio node platforms, software defined radios, RF measurement system, switching and computing backend and the ORBIT management framework (OMF). Additional ORBIT resources including special purpose sandboxes and the outdoor WiMax campus deployment are also described. The experimental interface and scripting tools for running an experiment on ORBIT are outlined, and examples of a few representative experiments which have been run on the ORBIT testbed are summarized. The chapter concludes with a view of ORBIT’s evolution and future upgrade path along with an explanation of how it links to the overall GENI project.
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