"Future telecommunication products promise increased data rates and signal quality, enabling the convergence of services including voice, data and video on wireless platforms. The majority of 4G systems, including LTE, employ OFDM modulation. For the success of these systems, a key, user-oriented requirement is security in the wireless transmission. Security in current wireless systems is achieved by cryptographic algorithms that are employed at upper layers of the network.
Commonly encryption algorithms rely on – unproven – assumptions about the difficulty in solving certain mathematical problems. An increasing number of widespread encryption algorithms were recently compromised and proved inefficient for secure wireless transmission. Such issues prohibit the expansion of services such as secure mobile banking. On the other hand, it has been rigorously demonstrated that encryption at the physical layer can offer unconditional security. Physical layer encryption approaches are unbreakable, invoking perfect secrecy in the wireless transmission of data of any kind.
The principal aim of this research program is to investigate a novel approach for physical layer encryption for systems that use OFDM modulation, termed Masked-OFDM (MOFDM). The proposed project is relevant to 4G wireless systems. The ultimate objective of this is work is to address theoretical, technical and practical aspects of the MOFDM systems. The means by which these aims will be achieved can be grouped into three main themes:
1. A thorough analysis of the signal properties and possible variations of MOFDM systems will be performed.
2. The development of realistic system scenarios will be investigated. The main issue to be addressed is the reduction of power consumption and therefore the prolongation of the device battery duration. Furthermore, synchronisation strategies are to be researched.
3. Finally, the proposal of practical designs for 4G systems is envisaged."
Fields of science
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