Productive discussions on spectrum management in 5G+ networks at SPEED-5G workshop in London
Spectrum management is currently a hot topic. The strong audience interest in the SPEED-5G workshop on ‘Advanced spectrum management in 5G+ networks’ underlined this. The workshop was hosted by BT at BT Centre in London on 7th March 2018 and attracted an international audience of 51 attendees. They represented network operators, vendors, regulators and academia. The participants witnessed technical presentations, a panel discussion, and live demonstrations of some key SPEED-5G results.
Keynote and SPEED-5G overview
The keynote was given by Jonathan Legh-Smith, head of partnerships and strategic research at BT. He set the tone by putting SPEED-5G in the context of telecoms technology development. The venue itself represents this development: on the site of the modern BT Centre was in the 19th century the Telegraph Office building of the General Post Office, from which Guglielmo Marconi made the first public transmission of wireless signals in 1897.
More than 120 years later, wireless technology has reached another historic milestone: 5G promises to deliver throughput and capacity, together with ultra-low latency and reliability, at levels that allow the introduction of hitherto unseen services. In his overview on SPEED-5G, project coordinator Klaus Moessner from the University of Surrey, presented the project’s main technical achievements, which contribute to the achievement of the 5G vision. Going deeper into the technical details of SPEED-5G’s results, Benoit Miscopein from CEA-Leti explained the project’s MAC innovations, followed after the lunch break by Andreas Georgakopoulos from WINGS, who presented the Speed-5G RRM innovations.
During the lunch break and throughout the day, the participants used the opportunity to see the live demonstrations of some key SPEED-5G results in action. Demo 1 presented the combination of centralised and decentralized radio resource management with a novel MAC protocol for higher capacity in small cells. Demo 2 showed how heterogeneous spectrum resources can be exploited through tight integration of multiple RATs at the MAC layer.
The workshop not only presented SPEED-5G results, but also gave EU-funded projects on related topics the opportunity to share their results with the audience. Valerio Frascolla from Intel, who is also the dissemination work-package leader in SPEED-5G, presented the 5G-MiEdge project, which develops an enhanced 5G architecture that combines mmWave access and backhaul with Multi-Access Edge Computing. Kostas Konstantinou from Real Wireless explained the results of 5G-MoNArch, which brings 5G mobile network architecture concepts to practice. And finally, Rory Turnbull from BT5 presented the G-Xcast project, which will devise, assess and demonstrate a novel 5G network architecture for large-scale media delivery.
Panel discussion on spectrum management in 5G+
The highlight at the end of the workshop was the panel discussion on spectrum management in 5G+ networks, which was moderated by Michael Fitch from BT. The panel brought together high-level expertise from government, industry, and academia. Panelists were: Simon Pike, Technical Advisor at the UK Department for Digital, Culture, Media and Sport; Andrew Stirling, Larkhill Consultancy; Stephen Temple, Mobile Policy Analyst Expert; and SPEED-5G coordinator Klaus Moessner, University of Surrey. The discussion focused on the issue of fragmentation in the use of spectrum and the challenges of dynamic spectrum allocation. The discussion between the panelists turned quickly into a wider discussion with the audience on regulatory, technological, and business aspects of spectrum allocation and usage. Adding a societal dimension, Andrew Stirling strongly advocated that 5G connectivity needs to be also brought to rural areas.
Comments by participants during and after the event indicated that the SPEED-5G workshop had left the audience with useful insights beyond the results of SPEED-5G as well as with food for thought on spectrum management in future networks.
The workshop brochure, presentation slides, and demo videos are available on the Workshop Page.