Waterford’s TSSG leads EU-funded €3 million plus ‘beyond 5G’ TERAPOD project
FUTURE tech experts at Waterford Institute of Technology’s Telecommunications, Software and Systems Group (TSSG) have teamed up with industry and a hand-selected EU-wide team to create, test and deliver completely novel ways of wireless communication that will meet the increasing demand for higher speed connections for decades to come.
Waterford City born Dr. Alan Davy from Hilview, is leading the way in a ground-breaking, industry-focused, EU-funded project to plot and plan the future of wireless technology way beyond 5G and ultimately deliver a system that is a thousand times faster than today’s optimum speeds.
The Waterford man, who went to De la Salle primary and secondary school in the city and now lives in Ballygunner, and his TSSG team developed the concept for the project and picked experts from across Europe to join the multi-disciplinary, multinational team. Today (Wednesday, September 13) they meet for the first time at TSSG with industry partner, Dell EMC, and will start delivering the mammoth, three year, €3 million plus TERAPOD programme.
TERAPOD sees academics and industry leaders from Ireland, the UK, Spain, Portugal and Germany not just investigate but also test and demonstrate the feasibility of an ultra-high bandwidth wireless access networks operating in the Terahertz (THz) band. The band is seen as “the new frontier for wireless communication” and the key to satisfying the increasing demand for higher speed wireless communication world-wide.
TSSG and its partners will build a Terahertz based Ultra High Wireless Bandwidth Access Network (TERAPOD). A TERAPOD cell is small, measuring about 10 meters, making it comparable in coverage to a femtocell. However, it could potentially deliver much higher throughput. This will be tested in Data Centres.
TERAPOD will see best how the band can be used not just by industry but by businesses and householders world-wide. Their work has the potential to totally change how massive Data Centres operate, how efficient they are into the future and how they are designed. Their work on the THz band will also impact on communication research over the next 10 years and allow the industry to grow dramatically, Dr Davy explained.
TSSG are project co-ordinators and leading the EU-backed initiative and partnering with Dell EMC means they can test their findings in both the TSSG’s own and Dell EMC’s extensive data centre networks, Dr. Davy said. The Waterford hub is the only Irish college involved in the project and their hand-selected partners from industry and academia include the University of Glasgow and University College London, the National Physical Laboratory (NPL) and Bay Phonics in the UK. German partners include TU Braunschweig, Vivid Components and ACST. The sole Spanish partner is VLC Photonics and the team also includes Inesc Tec from Portugal.
“This is a massively prestigious project for TSSG to lead and it opens up a whole new horizon for us as a leading research hub and for Ireland as a whole. Our role in TSSG extends beyond coordination and into new communication protocols, data link layer and novel Software Defined Network (SDN) management strategies The European Commission funded 6 projects to look beyond 5G and this flagship initiative is unrivalled.
By the end of the 3-year project, TSSG and its partners aim to practically demonstration and validated a cost-effective THz Communication system within a Data Centre setting and to have developed an early specification of a THz-based High Bandwidth Access Network Architecture and protocols.
Dr Davy is excited and very optimistic that the targets, while challenging, are achievable and says they’ve a great team working on the project.