Demonstration derives from research funded by the OUSD R&E and conducted on testbed infrastructure within the NSF Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research (PAWR) program

WASHINGTON – June 9, 2022 – The Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research (PAWR) Project Office announces the successful development and demonstration by Zylinium Research of a dynamic spectrum allocation system, Spectrum Exchange, tested and proven on PAWR infrastructure including the Colosseum network emulator and POWDER wireless testbed in Salt Lake City, Utah. The PAWR program is funded by the U.S. National Science Foundation (NSF). Zylinium’s research was funded by the U.S. Department of Defense (DoD) Office of the Under Secretary of Defense for Research and Engineering (OUSD R&E) in the interest of advancing spectrum sharing techniques and machine-driven spectrum intelligence capabilities.

Zylinium’s Spectrum Exchange is a network service for scheduling spectrum use and allocating spectrum resources when multiple user types are vying for connectivity at the same time over the same bands. It works in conjunction with the Spectrum Exchange Protocol (SEP), and is built on open APIs to connect to radio gateways in need of spectrum access. The system is highly granular and able to assign spectrum in slices as small as several kilohertz, and for time periods as short as tens of milliseconds.

“New spectrum sharing techniques are critical for making the most of a finite resource.” Bob Baxley, Zylinium

“New spectrum sharing techniques are critical for making the most of a finite resource,” said Bob Baxley of Zylinium. “Spectrum demand continues to grow, and increasing interconnectedness of radio frequency devices means that there is a new opportunity to leverage this connectivity for real-time, super-granular RF spectrum sharing. Simultaneously, it is clear that coarse spectrum sharing is not workable for many applications. RF systems simply cannot give up their access for long periods of time and still meet their objectives. Spectrum Exchange meets this need by enabling use cases through real-time granular spectrum sharing.”

A recent demonstration of Spectrum Exchange was presented to federal agency representatives using the POWDER wireless testbed, one of the first PAWR platforms, and the Colosseum network emulator. Both assets are part of the PAWR program, which was created by NSF and funded through NSF and an industry consortium of leading wireless companies and associations. The emulation demo on Colosseum showed the ability for Spectrum Exchange to carve out space for priority altimeter use in potentially contested C-band frequencies. The demo on POWDER used the live, over-the-air network of the testbed to show how 5G network users could be prioritized over less-critical Internet of Things (IoT) clients.

Zylinium leveraged not only the physical infrastructure of the PAWR platforms for its efforts, but also the digital infrastructure, which includes software development work the PAWR program has undertaken to enable an open source mobility environment. Spectrum Exchange was demonstrated using a custom version of the OpenAirInterface (OAI) 5G standalone stack.

“...we look forward to seeing what comes next from Zylinium and other innovators throughout the wireless ecosystem." Murat Torlak, Program Director in NSF’s Computer & Network Systems (CNS) division

“NSF and our industry partners have invested $100 million in the PAWR program to create shared national infrastructure assets that support wireless research through 5G, 6G, and beyond,” said Murat Torlak, Program Director in NSF’s Computer & Network Systems (CNS) division. “We are thrilled to see that investment produce such significant and concrete results, and we look forward to seeing what comes next from Zylinium and other innovators throughout the wireless ecosystem.”

Sumit Roy, Program Director for Innovate B5G stated, “US DoD has a vital interest in promoting advanced Intelligent Spectrum Sharing Concept demonstrations, specifically between Federal and Commercial wireless systems. The 5G-to-XG initiative is particularly pleased to support efforts that leverage NSF’s PAWR program investments toward the national goal of enhanced spectrum utilization in the mid-bands. We are excited by what Zylinium has achieved, and look forward to further development and potential commercialization of the technology.”

For more information on the PAWR program and its opportunities for wireless research, visit

About the PAWR Project Office (PPO)
The Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research Project Office (PPO) manages the $100 million public-private partnership and oversees the research platforms. The PPO is co-led by US Ignite and Northeastern University, and funded by the National Science Foundation and PAWR industry consortium. The PPO collaborates closely with the wireless research community, local communities, and industry, in part through the industry consortium, in the design, development, deployment, and initial operations of the research platforms.