The provision of robust and ubiquitous communications within energy and spectral constraints is a significant challenge for future communication systems. Wireless access to the Internet, via mobile phones or wireless LANs (Local Area Networks), underpins many of our everyday activities. Data traffic over wireless networks is doubling year-on-year and by 2024 user demand (in terms of traffic) will have increased by 1000 times. It is now accepted that there is insufficient radio bandwidth below 6GHz to meet our expanding societal needs.

5G networks will embrace a wide range of new technologies to deliver a radically enhanced user experience. Improvements will not only include higher peak data rates, but also a far more consistence user experience with vastly improved response times. Future networks are being designed to efficiently support machine-to-machine (M2M) networks. This will empower a new Internet of Everything (IoE), where devices as well as people will wirelessly communicate via the Internet. The IoE includes concepts such as the smart grid, home automation, ehealth, and intelligent transportation.

The CSN group’s research covers all aspects of fixed, mobile and wireless networks. Our core strengths build on rigorous modelling and measurement of the constituent parts of a communications link. This includes the multi-dimensional propagation environment and the 3D radiation response of antenna elements. We have a strong track record in channel measurement and modelling. Elements of our latest propagation models (namely the modelling of elevation spread) have recently been incorporated into the 3GPP 3D channel model. The group has also developed a novel hardware-in-the-loop bi-directional conductive MIMO test-bed. Unlike current industrial standards, we embed measured 3D antenna responses into all of our propagation models to provide a more realistic and integrated antenna/channel model.

The group is addressing the design of highly efficient RF transceiver designs (analogue and digital algorithms) and our latest designs are setting new bench marks in power efficiency. Through collaboration with the High Performance Networks (HPN) group we are exploiting the very latest advances in Software Defined Networks (SDN).

Active research in connectivity includes:

  • Wireless LAN optimisation and application (including industrial test and verification)
  • Air interface enhancement through multiple antenna techniques
  • Capacity simulations for LTE-Advanced deployments in realistic city-scale scenarios
  • Highly efficient RF power amplifier designs for broadcast and 5G and beyond cellular technologies
  • Spectrum efficient wireless and green radio solutions
  • Vehicular based communications and automotive applications
  • Wireless networks and protocols for smart grid and smart city applications