Leveraging its innovation legacy in the European research arena for more than 25 years, the company has been recently strategically positioned in the EU's flagship initiative for 5G by participating in 3 of the 19 forefront research and innovation projects that aim to place Europe in the vanguard of 5G network development. The European 5G framework includes of course radio technologies, but it also encompasses network architecture, convergence, management, virtualization, programmability, and services.
The objective of SPEED-5G is to research and develop technologies that address the well-known challenges of predicted growth in mobile connections and traffic volume. A major challenge is the cost of meeting the objective, in terms of both infrastructure and deployment. Today, lack of dynamic control across wireless network resources is leading to unbalanced spectrum loads and a perceived capacity bottleneck. These will be solved by SPEED-5G through eDSA (extended DSA), which is resource management with three degrees of freedom: densification, rationalized traffic allocation over heterogeneous wireless technologies, and better load balancing across available spectrum. The project will focus on two major innovations currently missing: resource management techniques across technology 'silos', and medium access technologies to address densification in mostly unplanned environments. It will leverage flexible radio approaches expected in 5G (e.g. FBMC).
CHARISMA focuses on two key requirements for future mobile/wireless networks: high security and low latency. To realize its goals, CHARISMA will work on the concepts of end-to-end cross-layer security, physical layer low-latency distributed security (PLS) and decentralized offload near the end-users. Further, based on exploitation of 10G-wireless (via mm-wave/60-GHz & free-space optics) access and 100G fixed optical (OFDM-PON) solutions, the project will work on increasing network performance in-line with 5G targets, i.e. 1000-fold higher data volume for 10-100 times the number of mobile connected devices, and reducing latency across back- and front-haul and end-user (ad-hoc) D2D mesh networking.
SDN and NFV have been originally proposed as architectures for the efficient management of clouds and have recently found their way into the networks of ISPs as well. It is not clear however, how SDN and NFV affect the QoS of networks in general and of industrial networks (manufacturing, oil & gas, building & construction, etc.) in particular. VirtuWind aims at introducing SDN and NFV into such networks so that deterministic (or almost-deterministic) performance is achieved for monitoring and control applications that span multiple network domains. A prototype system will be implemented and will be tested in a real wind park, as a representative example of industrial networks. Intracom Telecom leads the design and development of the inter-domain system.
BlueSpace is one of the "5G PPP Phase 2" projects launched in June 2017. BlueSpace targets a disruptive, approach for the deployment of scalable, reconfigurable and future-proof fronthaul solutions for 5G communications, offering unrivalled characteristics that include: a) increased bandwidth provision by naturally enabling and supporting massive MIMO transmission by exploiting space diversity in the RF domain and supporting RF beam steering in the photonic domain, b) compact infrastructure, reconfigurable by means of SDN/NFV paradigms and c) capability of integration with existing access networks such as Passive Optical Networks (PONs). This approach relies on the core concept of the project, the introduction of Spatial Division Multiplexing (SDM) in the fronthaul and the adaptation of Analog/Digital Radio over Fibre (RoF) schemes to the SDM-capable network.
TERRANOVA, one of the six "ICT-09-2017: Networking research beyond 5G" projects, envisions to extend the fibre-optic systems' Quality of Experience to wireless links by exploiting frequencies above 275 GHz. This means reliable connectivity at extremely high data rates in the Tbit/s regime and almost 'zero-latency' for networks beyond 5G. Breakthrough technology concepts are employed, namely the design of baseband signal processing for the complete optical and wireless link and the development of THz wireless frontends and their integration with photonic components. A network information theory framework, caching techniques, channel and interference models, all tailored to the particularities of the THz regime and extremely large bandwidths achieve the successful co-design of components and network solutions. The project enables the use of higher-order modulation schemes, pencil beam antenna arrays and multiple-access schemes to address user access and backhaul application scenarios at THz frequencies. The innovations and technologies are demonstrated by means of a proof-of-concept experimental platform validating and assessing the feasibility and performance of the concept.
5G-VINNI will accelerate the uptake of 5G in Europe by providing an end-to-end (E2E) facility that validates the performance of new 5G technologies. The 5G-VINNI key objectives are: (1) design an advanced and accessible 5G end to end facility for verticals, (2) build several interworking sites of the facility, (3) provide user friendly zero-touch orchestration, operations and management systems, (4) validate 5G KPIs and support the execution of E2E trial of vertical use cases, (5) develop a viable business and ecosystem model for the facility, and (6) demonstrate the value of 5G solutions to the 5G community. The 5G-VINNI facility will leverage the latest 5G technologies to demonstrate the achievement of 5G KPIs across a range of combinations of new 5G access technologies and end-user equipment types interconnected by the most advanced 5G core network technologies available. This approach employs Network Function Virtualization and Network Slicing. The 5G-VINNI facilities include 7 infrastructure instances in nationally supported 5G nodes across Europe.
5G-VICTORI is addressing the well-defined European objective of providing 5G solutions for verticals. In order to give verticals the opportunity to verify their use cases in large scale deployments, 5G-VICTORI will conduct large scale trials for advanced vertical use case verification, making use of infrastructures made available by 5G PPP Phase 3 Infrastructure projects (5G-VINNI, 5GENESIS and 5G-EVE) as well as the advanced national UK test-bed 5GUK, focusing on Transportation, Energy, Media, Factories of the Future and cross-vertical use cases. It will employ 5G network technologies developed in 5G-PPP phase 1 and 2 projects 5G-XHaul and 5GPICTURE and will exploit extensively existing facilities interconnecting main sites of all involved infrastructures, enhancing them towards integration of a large variety of vertical and cross-vertical use cases. 5G-VICTORI's platform aims to transform current closed, purposely developed and dedicated infrastructures into open environments where resources and functions are exposed to ICT and vertical industries through common vertical and non-vertical specific repositories. These functions can be accessed on demand and deployed to compose very diverse sets of services.
5G-HEART as one of the 5G PPP Phase 3 projects will deploy innovative digital use cases involving healthcare, transport and food (aquaculture) industry partnerships, including verticals which are hugely important in Europe, in terms of jobs, size and export trade, but also from a social perspective, for better patient outcomes, safer transportation and safer and more sustainable food production. 5G is important for these verticals in terms of improvements for utility, efficient processes, and safety among others. The infrastructure shared by the verticals will host important innovations: slicing as a service; resource orchestration in access/core and cloud/edge segments with live user environments. Novel applications and devices (e.g. underwater drones, car components, healthcare devices) will be devised. Trials will run on sites of 5G-Vinni (Oslo), 5Genesis (Surrey), 5G-EVE (Athens), as well as Oulu and Groningen, which will be integrated to form a powerful and sustainable platform where slice concurrency will be validated at scale. KPI validation will ensure improved healthcare, public safety, farm management and business models in a 5G market, stimulating huge business opportunities within and beyond the project.
ARIADNE, a "5G PPP Phase 3, Part 4: 5G Long Term Evolution" project, plans to bring together a novel high frequency advanced radio architecture and an Artificial Intelligence (AI) network processing and management approach into a new type of intelligent communications system Beyond 5G. The new intelligent system approach is necessary because the scale and complexity of the new radio attributes in the new frequency ranges cannot be optimally operated using traditional network management approaches. The ARIADNE project will enable efficient high-bandwidth wireless communications by developing three complementary but critical new technologies for Beyond 5G networks in an integrated and innovative way: ARIADNE will develop new radio technologies for communications using the above 100GHz D-Band frequency ranges, (Pillar 1), will exploit the opportunities emerging for advanced connectivity based on metasurfaces where objects in the environment can become tuneable reflectors for shaping the propagation environment in D-band (Pillar 2) and will employ Machine Learning and Artificial Intelligence techniques to management necessary for the high frequency communications and dynamic assignment and reconfiguration of the metasurfaces to provide continuous reliable high bandwidth connections in the Beyond 5G scenario (Pillar 3).
TERAWAY is a "5G PPP Phase 3, Part 4: 5G Long Term Evolution" project, aiming to develop a disruptive generation of photonics-enabled THz transceivers for high-capacity BH and FH links in 5G networks. Leveraging optical concepts and photonic integration techniques, TERAWAY will develop a common technology base for the generation, emission and detection of wireless signals with selectable symbol rate and bandwidth up to 25.92 GHz within an ultra-wide range of carrier frequencies covering the W-band (92-114.5 GHz), D-band (130-174.8 GHz) and THz band (252-322 GHz). Aiming to take the most out of the THz technology and enable its commercial uptake, the project will develop a new software defined networking (SDN) controller and an extended control hierarchy that will perform the management of the network and the radio resources in a homogeneous way, with obvious benefits for the network performance and energy efficiency and with possibilities for the provision of network slices in order to support heterogeneous services. In this way, TERAWAY steps into providing for the first time the possibility to organize the spectral resources of a network within these bands into a common pool of radio resources that can be flexibly coordinated and used.
5GZORRO envisions the evolution of 5G to achieve truly production-level support of diverse Vertical applications, which coexist on a highly pervasive shared network infrastructure. 5GZORRO uses distributed Artificial Intelligence (AI) for Zero-Touch Automation in end-to-end network slicing, across multiple operators and infrastructure/resource providers. Distributed Ledger Technologies (DLT) are implemented for distributed security and trust across the various parties in a 5G end-to-end service chain. An evolved 5G Service Layer for Smart Contracts allows SLA monitoring, spectrum sharing, intelligent and automated data-driven resource discovery and management in multi-tenant and multi-stakeholder environments. 5GZORRO will be validated on use cases of Smart Contracts, Dynamic Spectrum Allocation and Pervasive vCDN in 5GBarcelona and 5TONIC/Madrid test facilities. The consortium consists of 13 top 5G players from 7 different EU countries.