LTE-M1/NB-IOT base station emulation to test NB-IOT connectivity

Hello ,
we are building an LTE M1/NB-IOT tracker device. sadly in our area there is no LTE-M1/NB-IOT network. our main purpose is to test if the tracker devices can communicate with a real NB-IOT network and push data to the cloud. while searching for low cost solution, we came across limeSDR hardware. can anyone please guide me and clarify about this

  1. can we use just limeSDR /limeSDR mini along with a Linux PC ,and setup a base station with out any other external hardware like power amplifiers etc. we just need to test NB-IOT connectivity and data pushing to cloud. range <5m will be okay for us.
  2. we are new to Linux & other coding ,so is there any GUI tools where we can setup and configure the Base station for NB-IOT/LTE-M1. its for just experimental testing, non commercial, and very very low budgets,so amarisoft is not an option for us
  3. just in case if its possible to setup a NB-IOT/LTE Cat m1 emulator , what all hardware we need to order?
  4. on device side (tracker side), how can we use sim card,do we need any empty sim & burner tools? or can we use any commercial sims which are expired?so we can use its serial number or some thing like that?

please guide us in this matter .thank you
with regard
Dr.N.Chandra sekhar

Yes. A small duplexer might be nice, but is not essential.

There is no open source/gratis option for NB-IoT/Cat-M as far as I know. That said, I’m not so familiar with OpenAirInterface these days and so you could check with that community, but I’m also not sure what the state of LimeSDR hardware support is like. Also their licence may not fit your needs and you would need to confirm this also.

You need either a test SIM card, such as those sold by Anritsu for use with their test equipment, else a programmable SIM card, such as those sold by sysmocom.

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