Ubiwhere leads international consortium with MIT, IT and UC in new 5G project | News - Ubiwhere

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JUN 20 2020

Ubiwhere leads international consortium with MIT, IT and UC in new 5G project

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Once again Ubiwhere stands out in the area of expansion of the 5G network, by coordinating SNOB-5G (Scalable and Self-optimized Wireless Network Backhauling for 5G). The SNOB-5G project is developed under the Portugal2020 programme, counts on the support of the MIT Portugal Programme and has the collaboration of a prominent international consortium lead by Ubiwhere with the participation of the Research Laboratory of Electronics at MIT (Cambridge, Massachusetts), Instituto de Telecomunicações (Aveiro) and the Center for Informatics and Systems at the University of Coimbra.

The emergence of the 5G network in Portugal will respond to the high expectations of quality of experience for users of mobile communications, as well as enabling the capability of fast response and smart services to cities, facilitating the essential much-awaited change in this sector. However, the current overpopulation of the urban centres presents new challenges to the massive and ubiquitous installation of a scalable and efficient 5G network taking into account the existing telecommunications infrastructures.

Currently, half of the world’s population is distributed in cities and this number is expected to increase, which represents a rising number of devices, sensors and services, in need of continuous response. At this moment, the telecommunications operators tend to favour the use of wired network connection resources, particularly optical fibre, which despite meeting broadband and low latency requirements, presents installation challenges which leads to not always being available and results in a significant impact both in terms of network planning and in the necessary interventions for its installation.

SNOB-5G overcomes these obstacles by investigating, designing and implementing an innovative and robust intelligent solution for wireless backhaul connections between 5G units, the backhaul is a network structure responsible for establishing the link between the network core and the distribution units. Such innovation will enable cities to take advantage of elements of urban furniture (such as lamp posts, benches, bus stops, etc.) to distribute broadband network and establish innovative services such as intelligent transport systems and vehicle communication for autonomous cars, promoting the creation of a new business model that leverages the integration of cities in the 5G network market.

With the beginning of this Ubiwhere project, telecommunications will no longer depend on the availability of optical fibre, by being replaced for a fully autonomous network system apt to operate in a mesh topology, that is, a system prepared to connect in immediately to available networks when a specific wireless connection does not provide the performance required by the service or shuts down for an unknown reason.

By offering a resilient network with no point of failure, SNOB-5G ensures excellent Quality of Service, even in highly dense urban environments. The 5G network will be able to adjust autonomously and intelligently through digital techniques and resources such as Network Coding, Multipath routing, Software-Defined Networks (SDN) and Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) and dynamic caching techniques based on Multi-Access Edge Computing (MEC), which will guarantee the security of users and the privacy of their data.

This solution will also contribute to the creation of more sustainable cities. The wireless technologies adopted (such as mmWave) will potentiate the reduction of possible interventions in the municipality (temporary constructions, obstruction of roads, etc.), in parallel, the efficient management and the intelligent nature of the network itself will impact the Quality of Service offered to the end consumer. Additionally, SNOB-5G will offer cities the ability to improve their infrastructures so that they can adopt clean energy to distribute the 5G network.

The official launch of the SNOB-5G project took place in February 2020, but the project will be developed over 36 months, in which the technology is expected to be tested, and evaluated its ability to drive new and innovative services of smart and sustainable mobility in urban environments. The first use case will be implemented in Aveiro, the birth city of two of the partners responsible for the project, Ubiwhere and the Instituto de Telecomunicações.

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