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Wireless Broadband Communications

Main Fields

     

  • PHY and MAC Development for Gigabit WLAN and WPAN
  • Millimeter-Wave (mm-Wave) Backhaul Networks and Fronthaul Networks
  • Ranging, Localization and In-Door Positioning
  • Industrial High QoS WLAN with Low latency for Tactile Internet Applications
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Main focus

The growing need for wireless transfer rates of several Gigabits per second creates big technical challenges. It can be tackled by increasing the spectral efficiency of the transmission and by using additional radio spectrum, e.g. in the millimeter-wave (mm-Wave)-band. In particular beamforming and Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (MIMO) techniques are in the focus of research and development. Beamforming allows reaching a higher distance for wireless communications, and to mitigate the effects of shadowing and interference. Due to the short wavelength, the size of the required phased array antenna can be kept small.

 

By now, three main standards for mm-wave communications were developed. The ECMA-387 standard, the IEEE802.15.3c standard and the IEEE802.11ad. Another standardization process, IEEE802.11ay, aiming at even higher data rates of up-to 100 Gbit/s was started recently and will be completed around 2017.

 

The recent technological developments such as the implementation of 60 GHz transceiver circuits with cost efficient silicon based technologies as well as the progress in CMOS VLSI design and memory technology enable the development of ultra-high data rate communication systems. Therefore, currently there are numerous activities using the 60 GHz band for applications that require ultra-high data rates.

 

Millimeter Wave system, and in particular those operating in the 60-GHz-band, will allow a quantum leap in reaching significantly higher data rates than feasible with current WLAN technology in the sub-6-GHz frequency bands. This will facilitate new services and user applications, which cannot be made available with present wireless communication technologies.

Another important focus is the integration of ranging and localization in the communication system. The large bandwidth and high-performance baseband processor units allow very accurate estimation of the distance between transmitter and receiver using time-of flight measurements. This allows new location based services with extremely little extra cost.

Main Achievements

Fig. 1: Beamforming 60-GHz frontend module with IHP 8-channel beamforming chip

Within the project PreLocate IHP, jointly with the company InnoSenT GmbH and Humboldt-University Berlin, has developed a complete 60 GHz wireless communications system for net data rates up-to 4 Gbit/s (5.2 Gbit/s on air). An FPGA-based demonstrator together with 60 GHz front-end modules can be used for video streaming and data transfer. Simultaneously the demonstrator allows distance measurements between transmitter and receiver with a resolution of about 1 cm for a single measurement.

A mm-Wave frontend chip-set and module which allows beamforming was developed together with our partner InnoSenT GmbH (www.innosent.de). The beamforming frontend module is shown in Fig. 1.

Fig. 2: Measurement (red) of the antenna pattern of the 60 GHz frontend module for two different settings of the vector modulators – broadside (top) and 90 deg (bottom) - compared to simulation (blue)

The characterization of the antenna pattern for the beamforming frontend is illustrated in Fig.2. A comparison of the simulated antenna pattern with the measurement results shows a reasonably good match.

Fig. 3: 60-GHz OFDM-based system demonstrator - photo of measurement setup

In Fig.3, the measurement set-up with our 60-GHz OFDM-based system demonstrator is shown.

Fig. 4: 60-GHz OFDM-based system demonstrator - measurement results of the distance measurements

In Fig.4 the measurement results of the distance measurements using an enhanced time-of-flight (ToF) approach is shown. It can be seen that the standard deviation of the measurement error for a distance below 5 m is around 1 cm. Between 5 m and 8 m distance, the standard deviation of the measurement error is below 5 cm. This ToF-based ranging technique is used for precise indoor positioning.

Contact

Prof. Eckhard Grass

 

IHP

Im Technologiepark 25

15236 Frankfurt (Oder)

Germany

Phone: +49 335 5625 731

Projects

5G-XHaul

Dynamically Reconfigurable Optical-Wireless Backhaul/Fronthaul with Cognitive Control Plane for Small Cells and Cloud-RANs

DEAL

Wireless safe real time communication for Automation, Production and Logistics in the Industry

PROWILAN

Professional Wireless Industrial LAN

The building and the infrastructure of the IHP were funded by the European Regional Development Fund of the European Union, funds of the Federal Government and also funds of the Federal State of Brandenburg.