Colosseum opened to hosts DARPA’s Spectrum Collaboration Challenge

Colosseum, the most powerful emulator of radio signal environments in the world opens with Barone’s help


MAY 12, 2017 – The team at Barone Consulting is thrilled to announce that one of their latest projects, Colosseum, is providing support for DARPA’s Spectrum Collaboration Challenge.


Barone Consulting provides solutions to some of the Department of Defense’s most pressing problems by supporting the country’s leading scientists and engineers in areas including autonomous systems, electronics warfare, big data, geointelligence, and cybersecurity. Now, Barone Consulting with Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Lab, and National Instruments has unveiled a large-scale RF testbed that is being used by DARPA to host their Spectrum Collaboration Challenge, with up to $3.75million dollars in prizes.


The Colosseum features a 256-by-256 channel RF channel emulator, giving it the ability to calculate and simulate 65,000+ channel interactions among 256 wireless devices in real-time. Each second, more than 52 terabytes of digital RF data flows through the Colosseum. This is more information held in the Library of Congress’ entire print collection.


DARPA (Defense Advanced Research Projects Agency) works to make technological breakthroughs for the benefit of national security, a mission that has been in the making since 1957. With the launch of Colosseum, DARPA is taking another great stride towards automating the wireless communications world by creating this massive emulation environment.


“Creating Colosseum is just the first step.” says President Kevin Barone, “The biggest reward will be seeing the 30 Spectrum Collaboration Challenge teams use this platform to develop next generation artificial intelligence enabled radio systems that will fundamentally change the way we use the RF spectrum. Colosseum will help usher in a wireless future where unimaginably rich information experiences are the norm.”


During the competition, SC2 competitors will work to create innovative radio systems that will have the capability to learn from each other in real-time. Achieving such success in the realm of radio-based artificial intelligence will render radio specifications obsolete. Colosseum is being described as a “path-breaking testbed” that will be able to emulate tens of thousands of interactions between wireless communication devices such as military radios, cell phones, internet-of-things devices, and more in a single square-kilometer area.


One especially unique component of the design has been integrating software defined radio technology and a cloud-like computing environment that is remotely accessible by teams. Placing a resource of this scale onto the cloud will be a first-in-the-world achievement.


Barone Consulting looks forward to continuing their DARPA support of SC2 over the next 3 years to advance how artificial intelligence can create solutions for a multitude of wireless communications challenges.



According to DARPA, “The Colosseum is a magnificent electronic arena and just what we and the SC2 teams need for testing innovative, collaborative, intelligent radios against one another.”


More information can be found at


About Barone Consulting


With an emphasis in areas such as autonomous systems, electronics warfare, big data, geointelligence, and cybersecurity, Barone Consulting provides support to America’s leading scientists and engineers with a mission of tackling the toughest problems faced by the Department of Defense.