15. 6G for Distributed Intelligent Sensing and Communication (6G-DISAC); Project Website|
Duration: 2024-01-01 to 2026-12-31
Objective: The 6G-DISAC project aims to bring the integrated sensing and communication (ISAC) vision to life by adopting a holistic perspective with widely distributed intelligent infrastructure compatible with real-world integration constraints and future wireless network flexibility requirements. The project addresses both fundamental and practical challenges, such as tracking connected UEs and passive objects, performing ISAC with many distributed base stations, efficient distributed signal processing and machine learning for semantic ISAC, incorporating extremely large MIMO technologies and reconfigurable intelligent surfaces, and intelligent sensing activation. 6G-DISAC will focus on the distributed implementation of ISAC, unlocking real sensing applications and providing a multi-perspective view of networks in space and time for tangible communication gains. It will bridge theoretical approaches with operational and standards-compatible distributed joint communication and sensing. The project brings together world-leading actors across the value chain, including operators, network vendors, verticals, SMEs, research laboratories, and academic institutions. Together, the 6G-DISAC partners will define use cases, requirements, and design an innovative network architecture. They will also develop novel physical-layer waveforms, distributed sensing and communications methods, optimized resource allocation methods, and protocols. Several demonstrations will validate the key 6G-DISAC concepts. This project will revolutionize various applications, from extended reality and robot-human interaction to vehicular safety functions and improving communication key performance indicators with sensing-aided communications.
14. RIS-Enabled Positioning and Mapping (PRISM); Project Website
Duration: 2023-09-01 to 2025-02-28
Objective: This projects targets at demonstrating that metamaterials can be used to control the electromagnetic environment to achieve accurate multipath-aided positioning with low resources. To this end, i) localization algorithms exploiting ranging and/or angle measurements both at a Reconfigurable Intelligent Surface (RIS) and at a conventional multi-antenna receiver will be implemented; and ii) a proof-of-concept will be designed to demonstrate RIS-aided positioning leveraging field tests in controlled environments (e.g. laboratory, static configuration, etc.) as a minimum. The overall field-trial-based activity of the project will attempt to validate the hypothesis that positioning with a single transmitter can be performed by exploiting RISs and their capability to generate programmably steerable non-line-of-sight signals..
13. Terahertz Reconfigurable Metasurfaces for Ultra-High Rate Wireless Communications; Project Website
Duration: 2023-01-01 to 2025-12-31
Objective: The sixth generation (6G) of mobile communications, planned around 2030, is expected to support innovative applications with requirements not met with today’s technologies, such as massive-scale communications (within IoT), the Internet of senses, holographic communications, massive digital twinning and extreme reality, as well as full autonomous driving and flying networks, considering use cases in smart cities, smart homes and smart factories (e.g., ultra-high precision 3D positioning). With the emergence of viable Terahertz (THz) communications systems on the horizon, it is crucial to contribute THz communication and networking to the technology roadmap for beyond 6G timeframe and a step closer to industrial uptake. The TERRAMETA project aims to investigate revolutionary technologies for 6G and demonstrate the feasibility of THz Reconfigurable Intelligent Surfaces (RISs) assisted ultra-high data rate wireless communications networks. Novel high-performance hardware for THz networking components, including RISs and holographic transmitters/receivers will be developed, and advanced network analysis/optimizations techniques will be designed using those real THz components. The proposed TERRAMETA THz network will be driven by 6G usage scenario requirements, and indoor, outdoor, as well as indoor-to-outdoor scenarios will be demonstrated in a real factory setting and a telecom testing field. It is expected that the outcome of this project will significantly progress innovations for the 6G THz technology and systems.
12. Reconfigurable Intelligent Sustainable Environments for 6G Wireless Networks; European Commission Website
Duration: 2021-01-01 to 2023-12-31
Objective: The RISE-6G vision will build on the latest advancements on the Reconfigurable Intelligent Surfaces (RIS) technology for radio wave propagation control, in order to achieve intelligent, sustainable, and dynamically programmable wireless environments that go well beyond the 5G capabilities developed under 3GPP Release 16. The project’s objectives are: (i) to define novel network architectures and operation strategies incorporating multiple RISs; (ii) to characterize the fundamental limits with RIS-empowered networking, capitalizing on the proposed realistic and validated radio wave propagation models; (iii) to devise solutions that enable the online trade between high-capacity connectivity, energy efficiency, electromagnetic field exposure, and localization accuracy based on dynamically programmable wireless propagation environments, for legislation and regulation compliant spectrum use, data protection, and electromagnetic field emission; and (iv) to prototype/benchmark the proposed innovation via two complementary trials with verticals. The RISE-6G project is poised to actively participate in standardization bodies and bring its technically advanced vision into the planned industrial exploitation. This will secure the European technology leadership, supporting the creation of new European-conceived service and business opportunities in the 6G global race.
11. Hybrid Reconfigurable Intelligent Surfaces: Hardware Design and Signal Processing for Beyond 5G Wireless Communications;
The Royal Society, UK Website
Duration: 2021-12-14 to 2022-11-30
Objective: The RISs constitute a recent candidate technology for beyond 5G networks enabling smart wireless environments. They are planar structures with nearly passive integrated electronic circuits whose reflection characteristics can be programmed to manipulate incoming electromagnetic waves in a wide variety of functionalities. However, RIS-empowered wireless communications come with certain challenges, with the most significant being the control and optimization of RISs, as well as their efficient design for higher frequencies. In this collaboration, we are interested in investigating novel Hybrid RIS (HRIS) hardware designs and relevant signal processing techniques, being capable to simultaneously reflect the incident waves via low-cost beamforming, while performing local sensing, enabling channel estimation. A wideband RIS operating in the mmWave band will be designed and new architectures reducing the complexity of its controlling circuits will be investigated. Signal processing algorithms for channel estimation and multi-user operation in HRIS-empowered wireless systems will be also designed.
10. Fifth Generation Cross-Border Control (5GCroCo);
European Commission Website
Duration: 2018-11-01 to 2021-10-31
Objective: 5GCroCo trials 5G technologies in the cross-border corridor along France, Germany, and Luxembourg. In addition, 5GCroCo also aims at defining new business models that can be built on top of this unprecedented connectivity and service provisioning capacity. Ultimately, 5GCroCo is intended to impact relevant standardization bodies from the telco and automotive industries.
9. Multi-Dimensional Signal Design for Wideband HF Links;
Office of Naval Research
Duration: 2018-07-20 to 2021-07-19
Objective: High Frequency (HF) communication systems, which rely on ionospheric reflection, have been around for a long time, mostly as a low-bandwidth (3KHz), low-data-rate, and easy-to-install solution. However, a recent focus has re-emerged and intensified, mostly due to strategic satellite-denied communication considerations, targeting broadband versions of HF which could support an array of medium-rate applications. The existing MIL-STD-188-110C-Appendix-D foresees 24KHz of channel bandwidth, with proposals for 48KHz also existing. The targeted efficiencies needed to support some meaningful applications (like compressed video) are fairly high, leading to an upper goal of a few hundreds of Kbps. To be able to capture these gains, there arises a need to exploit all degrees of freedom of the channel, namely the time, frequency and space/polarization dimensions. To this end, the application of modern communication methods already in use or under intense exploration in other bands is necessary.
8. Advanced Dynamic spectrum 5G mobile networks Employing Licensed shared access (ADEL); European Commission Website
Duration: 2013-12-01 to 2016-11-30
Objective: Flexible spectrum usage is a promising enabler of spectral efficiency for next generation wireless broadband networks. In order to deliver the next order of magnitude gains in terms of overall spectral and radio efficiency envisioned for 2020, wireless access will have to be revisited both from a policy as well as from a technology innovation perspective. On the policy side, with the emergence of heterogeneous and small cell networks, the original "licensed vs. unlicensed" spectrum usage model has recently given way to the ''licensed shared access (LSA)'' paradigm wherein incumbent operators may allow smaller ones to share their spectrum at specific times and places, according to an agreed set of rules. In order to deliver the targeted gains, the LSA approach needs to address specific technology challenges. In ADEL we plan to address the following key challenges within the LSA wireless access paradigm: i) the dynamic and optimised allocation of the spectral and power resources at a short time scale (on the order of seconds to even milliseconds),ii) the guarantee of Quality of Service to the users of all participating spectrum-sharing networks and iii) the minimisation of the overall energy expenditure of LSA networks. As key technology enablers towards these goals, we propose the use of i) decentralised spectrum sharing techniques that allow both faster decision making and less control overhead; ii) advanced collaborative sensing between the cooperating wireless networks and individual nodes for better network coordination; iii) advanced frequency agile transceivers; and iv) self-optimisation techniques at the LSA networks to further minimise the EMF radiation and the interference caused to the incumbent networks. With the above, we believe that ADEL will lead to future heterogeneous wireless networks of an order of magnitude higher capacity and energy efficiency thus setting the roadmap for the adoption of spectrum flexible broadband wireless systems by 2020.
7. Convergence of Wireless Optical Network and IT Resources in Support of Cloud Services (CONTENT); European Commission Website
Duration: 2012-11-01 to 2015-10-31
Objective: CONTENT will focus on developing next generation high capacity end-to-end, heterogeneous infrastructure technologies to support the network of the future. The model proposed will be based on the Infrastructure as a Service (IaaS) paradigm and provide a technology platform interconnecting geographically distributed IT resources that can support a variety of Cloud services. This platform will include an advanced multi-technology network infrastructure, through which IT resources are shared by multiple operators and service providers and accessed remotely on an on-demand basis. The network solution will be based on the integration of next-generation wireless access and optical access-metro network technologies. CONTENT has identified the most promising and future-proof technologies in the wireless and the optical access-metro network domains and focuses on their seamless integration to provide end-to-end connectivity of IT resources with fixed and mobile users. CONTENT will focus on a hybrid wireless solution based on WiFi and LTE and a WDM access-metro network with frame-based sub wavelength switching granularity, incorporating active nodes that also support backhauling of the wireless access network. To support the IaaS paradigm, CONTENT will adopt the concept of physical resources virtualization across the technology domains involved. Virtualization will facilitate sharing of physical resources among various virtual operators, introducing new business models and enabling new exploitation opportunities for the underlying physical infrastructures. CONTENT's main objective is to offer a rationalized cost and energy efficient network infrastructure suitable to support Cloud and mobile Cloud services for which it will provide a proof-of-concept demonstration. The CONTENT consortium comprises a unique combination of the required technical expertise, with high complementarities in skills as well as balanced industrial and academic participation to achieve this objective.
6. High Capacity Network Architecture with Remote Radio Heads & Parasitic Antenna Arrays (HARP); European Commission Website
Duration: 2012-11-01 to 2015-10-31
Objective: To meet the growing capacity demands in cellular networks by mobile application users, several advanced technologies of increased complexity have recently emerged for wireless access. These capitalize on the increased number of degrees of freedom made available by the combined use of multiple antennas in several neighboring cell sites. However, such cooperative / coordinated wireless access schemes remain largely unproven due to practical limitations. In HARP, we plan to bring distributed multi-antenna wireless access to reality by combining two powerful emerging technologies: 1) remote radio heads (RRHs), which allow for widely geographically distributed access via radio-over-fibre connections to a central base station; and 2) electronically steerable passive array radiators (ESPARs), which provide multi-antenna-like functionality with a single active RF chain only. The proposed combined network design concept is expected to yield the benefits of high capacity multi-antenna multi-cell cooperative wireless access while doing so in a realistic, low-cost and, equally importantly, environmentally-friendly manner. In order to put together this novel wireless network solution in a credible fashion, HARP will focus on 1) The physical layer transmission and channel estimation techniques required for efficient wireless access with ESPAR-equipped RRHs; 2) The obtaining, processing and sharing of channel state information required for cooperative communication and 3) The RRH aggregation network, required for efficient coordination between disparate access areas. A hardware end-to-end demonstration from the base station all the way to the ESPAR antenna transmitters to the user terminals, will serve as a proof-of-concept of the proposed architecture. With the above, HARP holds the potential of enabling in a disruptive manner distributed multi-antenna wireless access providing, in turn, unprecedentedly high capacity for emerging and next generation wireless networks.
5. Enhanced Interference Alignment Techniques for Unprecedented Spectral Efficiency (HiATUS); European Commission Website
Duration: 2011-03-01 to 2014-02-28
Objective: High spectral efficiency is the holy grail of wireless networks due to the well-known scarcity of radio spectrum. The successive introduction of advanced communication techniques enabled by the massive increases in processing power over the last few decades has enabled a progressive rise in link spectral efficiency, which in emerging systems seems to be approaching its limits.
It is becoming increasingly clear that major new improvements in spectral efficiency of wireless networks will have to entail addressing inter-cell interference. While up to recently there seemed to be no way out of the apparent end of the road in spectral efficiency growth, the emerging approach of Interference Alignment (IA) – coming out of a very recent DARPA-funded project in the US – has cast new light in the spectral efficiency prospects of wireless networks: it promises new degrees of freedom that allow more parallel transmissions to take place within the same spectrum and free of interference from each other. The HIATUS proposal constitutes probably Europe's first collaborative effort to explore the true potential of this approach in wireless networks, with the goal of making it a strong enabler for ultra-efficient wireless communications in Europe and beyond. The main objectives / challenges of HIATUS will be 1) to unveil the available degrees of freedom in a number of relevant wireless networking paradigms; 2) to explore ways to overcome the need of perfect channel state information (CSI) of all participating users; 3) to identify realistic network architectures / transmission methodologies that offer unprecedented spectral efficiency gains and 4) to provide a proof-of-concept demonstration that will convincingly show the value of the new approach, paving the way for ultra-spectrally-efficient future wireless networks.
4. Resilient Reasoning Robotic Co-operating Systems (R3-COP);
ARTEMIS Industry Association Website
Duration: 2010-05-01 to 2013-04-30
Objective: The project aims to overcome the fragmentation of the robotic sector by creating a cross-domain platform of methods and tools for the design, development, and validation of resilient and usable real world autonomous systems. These systems will be able to reason, learn, and cooperate in different application domains such as surveillance and rescue, agriculture, people care, home environments, and transport. Research will target resilient cooperation models and protocols, robust computer navigation and vision algorithms, semantic reasoning methods, methods, and tools for the efficient testing and validating of dependable adaptive autonomous systems.
3. Network of Excellence in Wireless Communications++ (NEWCOM++); European Commission Website
Duration: 2008-01-01 to 2011-04-30
Objective: NEWCOM++ is the acronym of a proposed Network of Excellence in Wireless COMmunications, submitted to Call 1 of the VII Framework Programme under the Objective ICT-2007.1.1: The Network of the Future, mainly in its target direction "Ubiquitous network infrastructure and architectures". The current proposal draws inspiration, shape/form, and substantive direction from its successful predecessor, the NoE NEWCOM, which was approved and funded by the EC for 36 months starting March 1st, 2004 and ending February 28, 2007. At the same time, NEWCOM++ aspires to inject new vision, expanded roles, ever-higher degrees of research integration, and a definitive roadmap to financial security for the long-term life of this undertaking in the European research and higher-learning space. The core concept of NEWCOM++ is that of an NoE of medium size, greatly reduced from the initial NEWCOM Consortium, formed by keeping the most committed and performing partners, exploiting the successful integration tools that NEWCOM designed and activated, and which is created for the purpose of scientifically addressing medium/long term, complex, interdisciplinary, fundamental research problems in the field of wireless networks, focused towards identifying, posing in the right modelling perspective, and at least partially characterizing the information-communication theoretical limits. Its main objectives are: Identify a selective set of scenarios; Define suitable performance measures that take into account the wireless channel nature; Perform a detailed analysis of the main theoretical results available; Evaluate information-theoretical bounds on the achievable performance; Design and analyze transmitting/receiving algorithms and protocols in order to approach those limits; Analyze implementation aspects of the above algorithms in flexible, energy-aware user terminals; Output the major findings into an integrated simulation library; and Enhance the already good cooperation level among research entities.
2. Satellite Communications Network of Excellence - Phase II (SatNEx II); European Commission Website
Duration: 2006-04-01 to 2009-03-31
Objective: Today, Europe is a space power - the space industry, satellite operators and space organisations are major players in their respective fields, which are global in nature. Over the years, European RandD in satellite communications has encompassed a large number of activities spanning many programmes and organisations, however, such initiatives have been restricted in their strategic value, with only limited collaboration and coordination and further exasperated by a lack of the critical mass required to make an impact on the world stage.
The Commission's recently published White Paper on Space states that if Europe is to remain a Space Power it will need a policy to develop and deploy applications and to support the research and development, technology and infrastructures. As a first approach to integrate European research in satellite communications, the SatNEx NoE was established with the broad aims of removing barriers, integrating research and spreading excellence. The follow-on Phase-II project, SatNEx-II, aims to build on the groundbreaking SatNEx programme and, in so doing, achieve the longer-term goals that have been set in motion. The primary goals of the SatNEx-II NoE are to achieve long-lasting integration of European research in satellite communications and to develop a common base of knowledge. SatNEx-II will establish an innovative satellite communication platform for use by all members of the Network as a means for integrating research, teaching and training. SatNEx-II will disseminate the knowledge and the expertise generated to the international research community through various media at its disposal. SatNEx-II personnel will benefit from opportunities to move between institutions within the Network, to exchange ideas, share best practice and make use of specialist facilities.
1. Antenna Centre of Excellence (ACE); European Commission Website
Duration: 2006-01-01 to 2007-12-31
Objective: During 2006-2007, the ACE Network proposes to extend and complete the structuring effort started in 2004-2005, in the ACE-1 NoE Project by tackling the fragmented European antenna RandD, reducing duplications and boosting excellence and competitiveness in key areas. Sophisticated antennas are a strategic multi-application technology for emerging communications, navigation and sensing services for the Information Society, Aeronautics and Space, transport, security, de-mining and tele-medicine. Involving thousand of specialists, European antenna engineering is scattered on more than 200 Entities, with some 200 MEuro of antenna RandD yearly. In this frame, 45 top-level Institutions led the ACE-1 NoE and, with some additions, form the Consortium for the ACE 2006-2007 proposal (ACE-2). The ACE Network plans a Joint Programme of Activity with: a) horizontal integration by selecting, perfecting and regrouping for Design Software, Measurement Facilities, Teaching of top level courses and worldwide Dissemination. b) vertical integration, fostering university-industry co-operation, focusing research to support Europe's competitiveness in 5 key areas: 1) Millimetre wave and integrated antennas; 2) Small antennas; 3) Wideband and multiband antennas; 4) Planar and conformal arrays; and 5) Smart antennas. At the heart of the Network, a Virtual Antenna Centre of Excellence, will help to: a) Coordinate and manage the Network; b) Share software, testing techniques, benchmarks and standards; c) Provide a University-Industry RandD forum, aimed at knowledge exchange; d) Support a European School on Antennas, with the best courses and on-line education; e) Disseminate results and promote the creation of a European Antenna Conference and f) Aggregate and consolidate the Antenna Scientific Community. The ACE Network will significantly contribute to emerging wireless applications, thanks also to synergies created with the other projects in the area.