Taurus - 5G NR based SCPC SDR modem accelerated by Tensor Defined Radio and Open RAN

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The project's goal is to develop a 5G NR Software-Defined Radio (SDR) modem. The modem is cloud-native and ready for deployment across a diverse array of hardware platforms which can be located in the cloud or at the edge, in a fixed or mobile terminal. The modem’s RF interface adheres to the Digital IF Interoperability (DIFI) consortium's standards.

The versatile modem is engineered to support Geostationary Orbit (GEO), Medium Earth Orbit (MEO), and Low Earth Orbit (LEO). It will support bidirectional point-to-point Single Channel Per Carrier (SCPC) satellite communications links, offering flexibility and high performance for various satcom applications such as backhauling and trunking. With these capabilities, the modem is poised to meet the demands of an evolving space communications landscape.


The main challenges of the project are the aggressive timeline and the ambitious goal to deliver ultimately a platform independent solution that scales seamlessly all the way from low bitrate edge devices to high bitrate cloud based trunking.
Extremely novel programming languages and paradigms are leveraged, steering the development course as close to the bleeding edge as required (but no closer) in pursuit of achieving the required performance in terms of delay, jitter and throughput.


The key product benefits are 

  • Maximal adherence to the 5G NR 3GPP specifications

  • Compliancy with DIFI 

  • Platform independence

  • Scalability in terms of the throughput required by the use case

  • Extreme power efficiency

  • Extreme cost efficiency

  • Ease of deployment and orchestration

  • Compliancy with all orbits (MEO, LEO, GEO)


This modem uses proprietary Tensor Defined Radio components as well as commercial off-the-shelf software components to implement a customized configuration of the 5G NR waveform definition.

Under the hood, CactusSoft’s innovative Tensor Defined Radio (TDR) technology is employed a.o. to enhance 5G NR LDPC and polar code implementations for forward error correction (FEC) functionality, leveraging artificial intelligence to match the channel optimally in real-time. This novel, patent pending technology enhances the computational efficiency and thus simultaneously decreases both the hardware resources and the power consumption required for a given throughput.

Furthermore the SCPC SDR modem leverages proven and tested COTS software building blocks for 5G NR.

The initial product is based on 3GPP Release 17, meeting the latest 5G NTN standards; by virtue of the agility offered by SDR solutions it is natively ready to evolve Release 18.

System Architecture

The Product is entirely built on K8s but can also run on bare metal as lightweight Docker containers. Orchestration is managed through MANO/MEF.


The project is structured in a DEFINITION and a TECHNOLOGY phase.

The DEFINITION phase has the following key milestones:

  • Mid Term Review, at which results of Research and Survey activities contained within the definition phase are presented

  • Phase Completion Review, at which a summary of the outcome of the definition phase, including conclusions and recommendations is presented

The TECHNOLOGY phase has the following key milestones:

  • PDR, at which the top-level architectural design is presented

  • CDR, at which the technology requirements & specifications are approved, and the architecture is verified against those requirements 

  • Phase Completion Review, at which a summary of the outcome of the development phase is presented, as well as an outline of the subsequent PRODUCT phase is introduced.

Current status

The project kicked off in December 2023. Work currently in progress.

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