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Radio technologies for 5G using advanced photonic infrastructure for dense user environments

Periodic Reporting for period 3 - RAPID (Radio technologies for 5G using advanced photonic infrastructure for dense user environments)

Reporting period: 2016-10-01 to 2017-09-30

In RAPID5G, we develop a centralised radio access (C-RAN) architecture to support high-capacity heterogeneous (3G, 4G and 60 GHz) radio access technologies through low-cost, but ultra-high-bandwidth photonic techniques for the fibre-optical distribution. To meet the requirement to transport the high-frequency (and wide-bandwidth) wireless signals at low-cost, a novel coherent radio-over-fibre (CRoF) scheme is proposed in RAPID5G. Furthermore, for the mobile receiver, novel extremely low-cost (<10€) integrated transceivers are in development, which are based upon a SiGe technology. The radio resource management of the heterogeneous network using the developed mm-wave and photonic technologies together with legacy 3G/4G wireless will be demonstrated in RAPID5G.
The developed hardware will be tested in life-cycle assessments within different real life networks scenarios including a public stadium, an operator’s fibre-optic and wireless network, as well as in train and airport scenarios.
The radio resource management of the heterogeneous network using the developed mm-wave and photonic technologies together with legacy 3G/4G wireless is to be demonstrated in RAPID at a later time in the second and third periods of the project execution. Developed hardware is to be tested in life-cycle assessments within different real life networks scenarios including a public stadium, an operator’s fiber-optic and wireless network, as well as in train, airport scenarios. First early field trials using novel technologies developed within RAPID were already carried out within this first phase of the project execution and are reported in WP5.

In summary, the focus on the Y2 activities were to further detail the system architectures for the planned field trials in Y3 and to develop a detailed implementation plan for the two major field trials in Europe and in Japan. For the system architectures, advanced concepts were adapted to enable the field trials e.g. the usage of mobile IP to interconnect e.g. the legacy 3G/4G transceiver with the RAPID5G 60 GHz transceiver technology for the European and Japanese field trials. Another major activity has been in the development of the RAPID5G transceiver technologies and here especially the development of new low-cost SiGe 60 GHz transceiver and novel 60 GHz antennas offering beam steering and even multibeam functionality. The antennas were successfully fabricated and experimentally tested and the consortium even managed to integrat the antennas to reach prototype level which will allow the implementation of the antennas in the field trials. In addition, several preliminary test were conducted to eliminate or at least reduce risks for the field trials in Y3. As an example, a CRoF 60 GHz transmitter developed by UDE and SIKLU has been successfully implemented in a distributed antenna system developed by CORNING.

As expected and mainly thanks to the technological developments the dissemination activities have been intensified significantly. Another key action item from the management point of view was to further deepen EU-Japan collaborations. In this period intense collaboration took place including the joint development and characterization of novel multibeam antennas were successfully done and have already let to joint journal submission. In addition, the collaboration between the RAPID partners has already created scientific and technological results of high impact, e.g. the demonstration of world-record spectral efficient 60 GHz wireless communication at OFC 2016 and at other events. Also, a plan to enable collaboration with other EC and Japanese projects has been implemented and furthermore direct collaboration with other European and Japanese projects has let to joint inter-project publications. Another achievement is that the joint proposal between RAPID5G and the STRAUSS projects to organize an IEEE Summer Topical conference on “Photonic for 5G and beyond” in 2017 has been accepted.
UDE has developed novel low-cost travelling-wave antennas that provide 1D beam-steering and mutlibeam operation. This has a direct impact on the planed field trial especially for the multi-user scenarios. UDE is seeking to secure its IP in this field.
UDE and CORNING have demonstrated world-record results on spectral efficiency. This has already been successfully reported in scientific publications. This has been achieved using the CRoF approach proposed by UDE which enables the use of a low-cost mm-wave wireless envelope detector for complex IQ-modulation, the CPX technology developed in IPHOBAC-NG jointly between UDE and FINISAR and the experience of CORNING in DSP programming for ODFM. This achievement directly impacts the expected target outcomes of the EU-Japan EUJ3 call to demonstrate a better exploitation of new broadband links for short range for very high capacity communication applications. The above joint work between UDE and CORNING has also impacted the development of THz communication systems. The partners were able to demonstrate a world record spectral-efficient and broadband THz communication system with a spectral efficiency of 6 bit/s/Hz and capacities of up to 60 Gbit/s per beam and channel.
SIKLU has successfully demonstrated fully-integrated 60 GHz transceiver chips. This development will not only have a direct impact on the planned RAPID field trials but also provides an economic viable and cost-effective solutions. The wafer used in the SiGe process enable in a conservative estimation of the technological yield at least 1000 chips per wafer. Wafer cost vary between small and medium size production quantities between 2K€ to 10K€. This proves that at this moment, die cost are below 10€ even for small quantities and can be further reduced down to below 2€ with big quantities. This is expected to have also a major impact on future exploitation.
SIKLU has invented a compact LTCC-integrated solution for a novel lens-assisted beam-switched antennas that provide 2D electrical beam-steering of a 60 GHz beam over a large coverage angle with a gain of over 30 dBi. Together with the SiGe transceiver chip developments at SIKLU this provides a prototype for a fully-integrated radio front-end for heterogeneous wireless access. As such, these achievements have an important direct impact on the planned field trials.
EOM-based wireless beam tracking technologies and multi-channel beamforming devices using array-antenna based EO modulators for multiple space channels for dense user environments have been designed and fabricated by OSAKA. A new technique to double channel numbers have been demonstrated in 60 GHz band.
Mobile terminal localization simulations have been carried out (based on IEEE 802.11d waveform measurement accuracy) which estimate the position error distributions based on a time difference of arrival technique. In addition, terminal localization experiments have been done in the achromatic chamber in ENRI and the open experimental campus in CRIEPI, and good results are obtained.
The mobile IP approach that has been suggested in WP4 and WP5 by EXATEL and KODEN is expected to have a great impact on the RAPID field trials. If the proposed approach can be successfully validated in the RAPID5G field trials, it would not only enable the integration of the different access technologies (3G, 4G, 5G, WiFi), but also enable a scalable approach for future wireless access technologies.