Research Activity (period 2010-2014)

ECC Steering group published its five year strategy to strengthen and enhance Europe's electronic communications policy.

According to the strategy  the ECO is tasked to “develop relations with universities and relevant scientific institutes that would be willing to do research in spectrum management and give advice to research institutes on issues to investigate or on specific research”.  

Following areas of research are covered: 

Category 1:   Areas of research activity which in the short term could influence the ECC work programme

Category 2 Projects/activity in which the ECO is currently involved

Category 3:   Projects/activity which may be monitored but where speficific actions will not be proposed for the time being 


Category 4:  Areas which are not covered by specifically-identified projects 


Category 1: Areas of research activity which in the short term could influence the ECC work programme

 UWB area of research

  1. Institute of Radioelectronics, Warsaw University of Technology     

    One of the first projects dealt with the development of UWB signal sources and methods of signal reception.At present the research activity is focused on leading edge detection receivers intended for reception of ultra-wideband pulses. The need for precise determination of the moment of UWB pulse arrival is specific to the receivers used in positioning systems. In case of the threshold detection (leading edge detection receivers operation is based on it) the uncertainty of pulse position determination mainly depends on:

-           relation between pulse amplitude and shape, and the chosen threshold,
-           influence of interfering signals.

The research activities are focused on various methods for reduction of this uncertainty. Due to the signal used (very short pulses emitted with low repetition frequency) the task is very demanding. At present, the following solutions are being analyzed:   

-           implementation of automatic gain control circuits,
-           methods for reliable evaluation of UWB pulse amplitude and shape (and finally reduction of uncertainty by software means),
-           application of software methods using known and estimated features of ultra-wideband propagation channel (channel models, antenna patterns etc.)

In order to compare efficiency of particular solutions the research group is also working on methods and criteria that can be used for evaluation of receivers. Tests include investigation of typical receiver parameters describing sensitivity and immunity to interfering signals.

  1. University of Applied Sciences, Dresden

The (HTW) Spectrum Engineering related research activities mainly cover two topics:

  1. i) Research group is involved in UWB research and development for many years, both for low and high data rate devices. Therefore, coexistence issues within the UWB frequency bands (3.1-10.6 GHz) are of special interest. The work is focused but was not limited to Satellite Services, Fixed Services, Military Systems, Passive Services (in the frame of PULSERS, EUWB, CEPT ECC TG3, WG FM47, PT SE24).
  2. ii) Research group is investigating and developing hardware and software for low energy communications (sensor) networks. These networks can use UWB frequency bands, but are also very common in the ISM and SRD bands. To ensure proper operation of the devices in these bands particular studies in terms of coexistence are performed and planned to be continued (ETSI TG28, CEPT WGFM).

iii) Research group is involved in spectrum coexistence investigations regarding Intelligent Traffic Systems (ITS) and CEN Dedicated Short Range Communication (DSRC) in the 5 GHz range, aiming at the definition of parameters for future ITS devices. For these investigations, the Seamcat tool provided by ECO is used. In the near future it is planned to expand such investigations to Real Time Location Tracking Systems (RTLS) and other SRD with special focus on the 2.4 GHz-band and the possible expansion of the SRD band 863-870 MHz. 

  1. Ultra-wideband signals and antennas for radiocommunication systems (Bialystok University of Technology, Poland)

Time and frequency analysis of ultra-wideband (UWB) signals

Three basic UWB signals for FCC frequency band 3.1-10.6GHz were considered: Gaussian, Rayleigh pulses and wavelets. Spectrum width of Gaussian and Rayleigh pulses are wider than UWB operation band, so some additional distortions exist after reverse Fourier transformation of signals. Time analysis and spectrum of different kinds of pulse modulations: PAM, BPM, PPM and PPM with randomization were investigated. All considered pulses with optimal parameters regarding FCC frequency range for some modulation were used for the excitation of worked out UWB antennas and antenna arrays.

Matched UWB planar pulse antennas

A complex approach to design, synthesis and optimization of UWB antennas was proposed. This approach connects time and frequency analysis of UWB signals with a design of the whole antennas with excitation circuits, the analysis of the near electric and magnetic field distributions, current distribution, radiation patterns and also analysis of radiation, transmission and UWB signals reception with maximal resolution in time domain. An antenna transmittance, an intensity of electric field for 1V sinusoidal excitation of antenna, was used for the calculation of spectrum of radiated UWB pulses; these field pulses were received after a reverse Fourier transformation.

About 20 matched planar UWB pulse antennas with an optimal matching line and minimal dimensions were designed for work in UWB FCC frequency band 3.1-10.6 GHz. All antennas have input VSWR<2, a good radiation pattern and satisfactory emitted UWB field pulses.

Two-element matched UWB planar antennas

A design and computer simulation of the matched planar microstrip two-element antenna for UWB application in the whole FCC frequency range 3.1-10.6GHz were fulfilled in this research. A complex approach to the design and analysis of UWB antennas was used for construction of this array. A synthesized antenna has minimal dimensions, taking into consideration coupling between radiators and optimal excitation matching lines to obtain desirable characteristics of standard UWB signals radiation. Different matrices were used for simulation of this antenna. Using a two-port broadband uncoupled-matched device (hybrid) this antenna radiates two different UWB signals at the same time in the same frequency band.

Read more about scientific research at Bialystok University of Technology during last 6 years here.

Wireless M2M communications area of research

Scientific project plan ”Reliable Wireless Machine-to-Machine Communications in Electromagnetic Disturbed Industrial Environments”

Project consortia

University of Gävle (project manager); Swedish Defence Research Agency; SSAB Tunnplåt AB, Åkerströms Björbo AB; Syntronic AB; Agilent Technologies Sweden AB; Stora Enso Kvarnsveden AB; Green Cargo AB.


The main objective of the project is to create improved technical solutions for increased reliability of wireless applications in industrial environments. To create this goal the following three Industrial and scientific problems are addressed:

  1. Characterization of the total electromagnetic interference in selected frequency bands for wireless applications in industrial environments. Focus on measurements and model development. Both interference signals and wave-propagation properties are investigated.
    2.   Assessment of the sensitivity of present wireless technologies to the industrial interference environments characterized.
    3.   Improvement of selected present communication technologies in order to increase the robustness against the industrial interference environments characterized.


  • Models of the electromagnetic interference in industrial environments.
    •     Models of the wave-propagation properties (multipath) in industrial plants.
    •     Assessment of the sensitivity of selected present wireless technologies to this interference. Guidelines for choice of optimal off-the-shelf products in system design.
    •     Improvement of present communication technologies and products by prototype development.

Cognitive radio area of research

  1. COST-TERRA project

Objectives (Primary):
Developing a comprehensive techno-economic regulatory framework of radio spectrum access rules for CR/SDR, catering for envisaged CR/SDR deployment scenarios and fostering the development of the wireless industries and consumer interests at large.

Secondary: Assistance (in the form of know-how) to European regulators and regulatory/standardisation bodies, such as CEPT, ETSI, EC.

Work programme:

  • research into development of plausible deployment scenarios for CR/SDR, based on results of current and future technological R&D activities
  • research into what regulations would be technically feasible
  • research into what regulatory regime would be economically attractive
  • research into overall impact assessment and societal benefits of developed regulatory scenarios

PowerPoint presentation with the latest status update from COST-TERRA may be found here.

2. CoRaSat (EU Framework 7)

The project started on 1 October 2012 and runs until October 2015. More details are available on the CoRaSat website: http://www.ict-corasat.eu/.  Contact point: Paul Thompson (p.thompson@surrey.ac.uk)

The COgnitive RAdio for SATellite Communications (CoRaSat) project aims at investigating, developing, and demonstrating cognitive radio techniques in satellite communication systems for spectrum sharing. Outcomes of the study will drive the definition of strategic roadmaps to be followed by industry stakeholders, European Institutions, and Governmental actors towards regulatory and standardization groups in order to ensure that the necessary actions are undertaken to open new business perspectives for SatCom through cognitive radio communications in support of the Digital Agenda for Europe.

Flexible spectrum utilization is a surging trend for the optimized exploitation of spectrum resources, and the cognitive approach has already demonstrated its potential for terrestrial systems, but not yet in the SatCom domain. However, SatCom are fundamental to achieve the challenging objectives of fast broadband access for everyone by 2020: their inherent large coverage footprint makes them the most suitable access scheme to reach those areas where deployment of wired and wireless networks is not economically viable.

CoRaSat puts together these two elements by considering Cognitive Radio approaches for coexistence scenarios in spectrum allocated to any SatCom service.
For the first time in SatCom research initiatives, CoRaSat will systematically and thoroughly approach the Cognitive Radio concept considering SatCom peculiarities and characteristics. CoRaSat will identify scenarios and use cases, focusing on broadband applications and considering other services, like interactive broadcasting, narrowband applications, etc., where cognitive radio can improve spectrum exploitation. Technology enablers for the identified scenarios will be developed and demonstrated for specific use cases through analysis, simulation, and testbed implementations.

Flexible spectrum usage has potential benefits for SatCom as well as threats; CoRaSat aims at demonstrating that the benefits outnumber the threats and open up new business perspectives.

2.  Research activity on cognitive radio systems (VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland)

Research on cognitive radio systems includes studies on cooperative spectrum sensing techniques, intelligent channel selection methods and cognitive control channels, as well as the area of power control. Spectrum sensing studies include algorithm work, combining methods for cooperative sensing, and both soft and hard decision investigations. Channel selection has been studied taking into account network topologies and history information databases. Both short term and long term information have been considered to make predictive channel selections possible. Methods include intelligent schemes for selecting sensing devices, channels to be sensed, and channels to be used for cognitive communication. For example, application of fuzzy logic has been considered. Algorithms for adaptive power control as well as methods for estimation of power limits in cognitive radio system have been investigated taking characteristics of primary systems and performance of spectrum sensors into account. Studies on cognitive control channels include future development of cognitive pilot channel (CPC) and cognitive control radio (CCR) into cognitive control channels (CCC). VTT has also been working on the "Cognitive radio systems in the land mobile service" - Report in the ITU-R.

Trial – Trial Environment for Cognitive Radio and Networks programme 2011-2014

The aim of Tekes’ Trial Environment for Cognitive Radio and Networks programme is to transform Finland into a globally attractive cluster of expertise and unique trial environment for cognitive radio and networks. The trial environment enables the research and development of products, services and applications associated with cognitive radio. The programme offers funding, expertise, market research and seminars. In addition, it provides a networking environment to companies and research organizations both in Finland and internationally. Trial offers international partners an opportunity to cooperate with the key players in Finland. The programme is looking for corresponding trial environments and test beds to cooperate with. The duration of the programme is four years, 2011-2014. The total budget of the programme is estimated at EUR 30 million.

  1. C-PMSE project  (http://cpmse.research-project.de/index.php/en/)

    Contact point: Dr. Andreas Wilzeck Andreas.wilzeck@wisesense.net

C-PMSE Project is running for 26 month, from April 2011 until May 2013. It consists of 9 partners from industry, research institutes and universities. The project budget is about 7.5 million euro (http://cpmse.research-project.de/index.php/en/). The goal of the project is the design, development, test and research on a cognitive PMSE system which provides cooperative coexistence with other C-PMSE systems, white space devices, broadcasting and mobile radio.

On 29th of May 2013 a practical demo on cognitive behavior was given at Messe Berlin. Initial frequency assignments to PMSE links are calculated, frequency handovers due to raising interference and power control to accommodate a varying link quality were shown to the public. Furthermore it was shown that link quality supervision can be done on analogue FM links in situ.

Presentations of demo Workshop are available from: http://cpmse.research-project.de/index.php/en/project/82-cpmsenewsen/119-demonstration-workshop  

  1. COGEU (COGnitive radio systems for an efficient sharing of TV white spaces in EUropean context)

COGEU executive summary:

The COGEU project is a composite of technical, business, and regulatory/policy domains, with the objective of taking advantage of the TV digital switch-over (or analogue switch-off) by developing cognitive radio systems that leverage the favorable propagation characteristics of the TV White Space through the introduction and promotion of real-time secondary spectrum trading and the creation of new spectrum commons regime.

COGEU will also define new methodologies for TVWS equipment certification and compliance addressing coexistence with the DVB-T European standard and wireless microphones.

See COGEU presentation here.

  1. Center for Wireless Systems (Copenhagen University College of Engineering,  Copenhagen, Denmark)

Resistance against Jamming

Research of opportunities, needs and expectations of future automated warfare in light of embedded wireless sensor network (WSN) is conducted. Focus areas are spectrum use and management of autonomous self-configuring covert wireless sensor networks incorporating cognitive behavior. A number of modern cognitive system enablers consisting of: (MC)-DSSS, FHSS, OFDM are discussed and compared with the transform domain communication system (TDCS).

Primary research focuses on low probability of detection / interception (LPD / LPI) properties in terms of WSN transmitter system visibility. These parameters are analyzed in light of modern detection methods, such as radiometers and energy detecting systems. Moreover, analysis is carried out with respect to modulation behavior and resistance / strength against jamming. 

These parameters are the backbone for the TDCS system. Offering cognitive time / frequency domain controlled behavior as e.g. dynamic spectrum shaping management. Thus TDCS based cognitive spread spectrum systems provides a high level of interference and anti-jamming capabilities.

  1. University of Oulu (Centre for wireless communications)

COGNAC (Cognitive and opportunistic wireless communication networks) is a national (Finnish) research project with a main aim to  develop fundamental knowledge on the techniques of opportunistic spectrum usage for broadband wireless communication systems enabling the provision of multitude of services. In addition to the development of practical techniques and solutions, an equally important goal is to achieve good understanding on the fundamental behavior of opportunistic and heterogeneous traffic behavior in order to develop suitable models for analysis and simulation purposes. This three year project is ending at the end of 2010. More than 35 scientific journal and conference articles have been produced. Cognac is funded by the Finnish Funding Agency for Technology and Innovation, University of Oulu (Centre for Wireless Communications) and VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland.

  1. Euler-project (EUropean Software Defined Radio for wireless in joint security operations)

EU FP7 Security-programme is funding a three year Euler-project (EUropean Software Defined Radio for wireless in joint security operations). The EULER project  aims to define and  demonstrate how the benefits of SDR can be leveraged in order to drastically enhance interoperability and fast deployment in case of crisis needed to be jointly resolved. The  activities span the following topics: proposal for a new high-data-rate waveform for homeland security, strengthening and maturing ongoing efforts in Europe in the field of SDR standardisation, implementation of Software defined radio platforms, associated assessment of the proposal for high-data-rate waveform for security, and realisation of an integrated demonstrator targeted towards end-users. Significant interaction with E.U stakeholders in the field of security forces management will contribute in shaping a European vision for interoperability in joint operations for restoring safety after crisis. Euler will continue till March 2012. Euler web-site is www.euler-project.eu 

  1. Aalborg University (Radio Access Technology Section (RATE))

Within the RATE Section at Aalborg University, the major keyword associate to Cognitive Radio is Dynamic Spectrum Allocation. The research spans then from game-theory and graph-theory models of the interference and coexistence problems, to the practical support of the designed algorithms in the traditional communication protocol stack, including channel sensing, channel feedback, Medium Access Control (MAC), and over all, Radio Resource Management (RRM).

  1. Simula Research Laboratory and University of Oslo (http://heim.ifi.uio.no)

Current research areas include cognitive radio networks, spectrum sensing, spectrum sharing  and the applications of game theory in wireless networks.

Cooperative spectrum sensing has been proved to improve the sensing performance in terms of its reliability and the duration of sensing. However, in a distributed scenario, the cognitive radio users may not cooperate with each other for cooperative spectrum sensing. In such a case, how to enforce collaboration between the secondary users, although they are selfish, is an interesting aspect to investigate, and game theory is a natural platform to analyze such problems. In addition to enforcing cooperation among non-cooperative users, this approach can help to improve the system performance by optimizing the use of network resources. Currently, the study is concentrated on cooperative spectrum sensing among non-cooperative secondary users with heterogeneous traffic dynamics, using game theory.

As a next step following can be considered: to investigate the issues of coexistence of cognitive radio users with different types of traffic such as multi-media traffic, data traffic etc, for efficient resource allocation; to consider the heterogeneous requirements of spectrum for different users. 

  1. Cognitive radio research activities at Institute for Communication Technologies (IKT), Leibniz Universität Hannover

10.1. Cognitive radio in the perspective of industrial communications

Industrial environments have more severe QoS requirements than those typically found in home and office area, e.g. high reliability, low latency, larger number of nodes, deterministic performance with predictable degradation, etc., which limited the usage of wireless solution in this area. However, with the enhancement of cognitive radio, such requirements can be potentially satisfied. The activity is concentrated on the following topics applying cognitive radio to industrial communications:

  1. a) reliable spectrum sensing/classification techniques ensuring the usability of radio spectrum and mitigating interference and coexistence with other networks;
    b) cognitive network which support large number of nodes operating at moderate data rates with high QoS guaranteed;
    c) enhancing PMSE (Program Making and Special Events) industry with cognitive capability in order to face the challenging from digital switchover of TV channels and forthcoming white space device operating in UHF/VHF band.

10.2. Cognitive Femtocell

The perspective of "Cognitive Femtocell" is mainly within the scope of extending the high speed 4G service to indoor residential coverage.

The name of "Cognitive Femtocell" is coined by the small coverage area of "Femto" and its radio cognition ability for dynamic accessing the available spectrum holes in TV band.

"Cognitive Femtocell" is mainly driven by two matters of facts. The first one is the growing heterogeneity of IMT-advanced system along with the aggressive reuse strategy for spectrum hunger. The second fact is many white spaces holes observed in current TV bands by various research reports. To better ease the Macrocell traffic burden and avoid the mutual Femto-Macro interference, the spectrum reuse of white spaces in TV bands for Femtocell is thus invented and propelled by many research and industry groups.

IKT is mainly working on the following topics for the cognitive Femtocell:

  1. a) co-existence study of cognitive Femtocell with other white space devices;
    b) modification on the current standards and realistic extensions;
    c) system analysis of the cognitive Femtocell and its cognitive RRM strategies.

10.3. OFDM-OQAM Physical Layer for Cognitive Radio

In the context of cognitive radio, the ability to flexibly adapt to the environment in the presence of other primary or secondary networks is a key issue for future wireless communication systems. IKTis working on OFDM-OQAM, a more efficient and frequency-agile modulation techniques comparing with traditional CP-OFDM, which is promising for future wideband cognitive radio systems.

The research interests are:

  1. a) physical layer performance evaluation based on testbed implementation;
    b) algorithm design to cope with fragmented spectrum in the presence of primary user as a secondary system;
    c) coexistence studies of existing and advanced multicarrier based physical layer.

The focus is on, but not limited to White Space communication in the UHF band.

  1. Cyril and Methodius University in Skopje (UKIM) (WiNGroup at FEEIT)

WiNGroup is participating in FP7 project such as ARAGORN, FARAMIR, QUASAR (STREPs) and ACROPOLIS (NoE).

The research activities of the WiNGroup at FEEIT in the broad area of cognitive radio networks are focused on several sub-domains such as:

  • Policy regulated cognitive radio networking - the emphasis is on development of policy system architectures, prototyping of necessary policy system components (reasoners, managers, servers, enforcing points), extensions of CoRaL ontologies for various applications, dynamic policy derivation for handling emergency situations etc.;
    •  Spectrum sensing techniques and their implementation - the group is working on implementation of energy detection and cyclostationary feature detection on USRP2, implementation of energy detection on TI eZ430, research and implementation of novel sensing techniques such as Higher-Order-Statistics (HOS) based detection, cooperative detection etc.
    •  Spectrum occupancy measurements and spectrum occupancy modeling - the emphasis is on extensive outdoor and indoor spectrum occupancy measurements (both long and short term) using heterogeneous sniffing devices ranging from state-of-the-art signal analyzers to medium-end custom solutions (e.g. USRP2 based sniffer) and low-end custom solutions (e.g. TI eZ430 sniffer). Additionally, WiNGroup also works on analytical and simulation based modeling of the spectrum occupancy in Macedonia (detecting the amount of white space available for secondary access).
    •  Reconfigurable terminal prototyping - the group developed a complete reconfigurable terminal based on the IEEE 802.21 standard and having a custom developed radio resource manager that allows seamless and transparent roaming across various wireless access technologies (e.g. IEEE 802.11 WLAN and 3GPP UMTS).
  1. Research activity on cognitive radio systems (University of Zagreb Faculty of Electrical engineering and Computing Department for Wireless Communications)

Research on cognitive radio systems includes studies on cooperative spectrum sensing techniques, adaptive beamforming array antennas, localization techniques and the power efficiency issues. Smart antennas systems studies include algorithm work for location and signals tracking by the both: users and interferers, dynamical adaptation of the antenna pattern to enhance the reception in Signal-Of-Interest direction and to minimize interference in Signal-Of-Not-Interest direction. Furthermore, studies in improvement and optimization of channel capacity and co-channel interference of cognitive radio systems are showing a strong dependence on the used algorithms, especially if run simultaneously with localization algorithms. Methods for cooperative sensing are applied for spectrum sensing, especially the soft and hard decision investigations. Finally, the power limits in cognitive radio systems have been investigated by introducing innovative power efficiency algorithms.

  1. Eurecom (France)

Summary of the work done with the participation of scientists from can be downloaded here.

  1. Aachen University (Germany)

Cognitive Radio Technologies: this sub-group of the Aachen University is mostly considering quite wide-scope of technology enablers. Research is considering cognitive radio and CR network architectures, cognitive radio resource management, open interfaces for information exchange, and quite a lot of theoretical research issues such as topology control, spectrum detection etc.

Spectrum Monitoring and Modelling: in this sub-domain Aachen University conducting a lot of spectrum occupancy measurements, not only in Germany but also in other countries. A big part of the work is not only to measure spectrum occupancy, but also to develop standardised metrics and methods to make them and exchange the data. In theoretical domain Aachen University is working with a quite big team on developing spatiotemporal models for spectrum usage. In this domain Aachen University also cooperates with silicon and asic groups on understanding and developing new spectrum measurement techniques that could be cheap and widely deployed.

Spectrum Policy Technologies: although Aachen University do not work in the policy making area, they have been working on spectrum and radio policy languages, and even experimented with a modified CoRAL spectrum servers.

Spectrum Occupancy Assessments: closely related to spectrum modeling, Aachen University  is working in cooperation with some economists and industry, on developing better methods for understanding spectrum value and how to decide between different possible spectrum policies. Future Wireless Systems Group:  FWS sub-group is working apart of the above spectrum issues with flexible & adaptive radio technologies, and low-power consumption issues. A part of the work is systems level work, and part of it is more on component level enhancements.

Information on the activities relating to Cognitive Radio Systems (CRS) and Software Defined Radio (SDR) systems within CEPT is presented here.

Research activity on IMT-Advanced System 

  1. VTT Technical Research Centre of Finland

In IMT-Advanced research, VTT participated in the ITU-R spectrum demand calculation for IMT-Advanced in preparation for WRC-07. VTT participated in the development of several ITU-R Recommendations and Reports and authored five book chapters on the topic. VTT also participated in the definition of minimum requirements for IMT-Advanced at the ITU-R and the evaluation of the candidate IMT-Advanced technologies.

  1. Center for TeleInfrastruktur (CTIF) at Aalborg University, Aalborg, Denmark

CTIF is strongly contributing to advancing state of the art and standardisation of LTE-Advanced and IMT-Advanced systems with research projects in the area of Flexible Spectrum Usage in Self-Organizing Networks; Cooperative Spectrum Sensing, Cognitive radio, Spectrum and Carrier Aggregation. Among others, CTIF has a secure cognitive network test bed (S-COGITO) able to showcase flexible spectrum usage on cellular networks towards the improvement of user experience and spectral efficiency.

In particular, for the area of spectrum and carrier aggregation, work is focused on the modeling and simulation aspects of these two enabling techniques for IMT-A and their integration with proposed frameworks for upper layers radio resource management strategies. Current work has proposed an integration of spectrum aggregation strategies with common radio resource management as specified for LTE and LTE-A for a scenario of non-contiguous bands for a single and multiple operators, with the objective of increasing the overall system throughput by a better user allocation in the shared band in consideration of the quality of service requirements of the user and the available system resources. In this context a novel multi-band scheduling strategy has been proposed that manages the balance between the data pipe and the obtained extra source of spectrum, and performs an optimized user scheduling. The radio allocation mechanism allocates the user packets to the available radio resources in order to satisfy the user requirements, and to ensure efficient packet transport to maximize spectral efficiency and is part of the overall set of radio resource management mechanisms. This enables the pooling of the resources together; while the integration allows for mapping of the service requirements onto an available spectrum amount and translates the latter into network load. The approach uses the widely separated frequency bands for achieving lower delays and jitters and higher user throughput by exploiting the channel diversity. These show independent Channel Quality Indicators (CQIs) over time and space, which becomes a source of diversity at the Physical (PHY) layer, allowing for opportunities for higher spectrum efficiency. Information from the network about the system state (e.g., received signal strength, transmitted power, user terminal velocity, etc) and used in RRM procedures such as load, admission and congestion control can successfully be combined with dynamic spectrum use and reduce the need of spectrum aggregation in some cases. Related current work is targeting novel spectrum-aware network discovery and mobility management strategies for IMT-A systems.

  1. Center for Wireless Systems (Copenhagen University College of Engineering,  Copenhagen, Denmark)

Quality of Service Estimation

4G communication uses LTE and Advanced LTE with foundation of OFDM to avoid ISI and achieve high spectral efficiency.  Security is main issue in these comprehensive wireless communication systems, which are subjected hostile environments. To avoid jamming, interference or interception and efficient spectrum usage, it is fundamental requirment to use cognitive approach. Actually, the backbone in this approach is to notch out  those channel/subchannels with low QoS parameters and hopping between the available good quality channels.

QoS in OFDM/ OFDMA where the subchannel have the same center frequency but different users use these subchannels. By using this technique, high data transmission rate is achieved among multiuser simultaneously. The basic modulation scheme such as BPSK, QPSK, etc., can be used. While using Phase Modulation schemes, EVM is the best parameter to measurement quality of service from which BER can be calculately easily. Depending on BER of the subchannel, it can decided to notch out for a specific time period to avoid antijamming attacks such as DoS.

Encryption at Physical Layer

Future 4G/5G wireless links are expected to move beyond Giga bit bandwidth making it difficult to encrypt/decrypt data in real-time at application layer or link layer of devices using their general purpose processing unit. Dedicated hardware for encryption/decryption is required.

Most wireless devices in 5-10 years will be based on cognitive radio technology for intelligent spectrum management. The central part of such radio is a high performance FPGA which is able to carry out the needed signal processing for, e.g., OFDM.

In this research we combine encryption/decryption with the radio physical layer signal processing and in this way use same FPGA for both at same time. This will save hardware and reduce the price and the approach is expected to save power as well. Standard FPGAs year 2010 are able to encrypt or decrypt 10 Giga bit per sec. or more with AES using 128 bit key.

  1. Aalborg University (Radio Access Technology Section (RATE))

Aalborg University is performing research related to spectrum management and radio resource management for LTE –Advanced: two main topics are Carriers Aggregation (CA - and RRM for CA), and Autonomous Component Carrier Selection (ACCS):

 Under the CA topic, several challenges and techniques related to the utilization of multiple Component Carriers (CCs), are researched. This includes aspects of CC in different frequency bands and also paired and unpaired carriers.

ACCS is meant for unplanned deployment of Home eNB in Local Areas, where one or several operators can optimally assign and share spectrum among the autonomous Home eNB’s according to time varying interference and load conditions. 

  1. Research activity on radio channel modeling (University of Zagreb Faculty of Electrical engineering and Computing Department for Wireless Communications)

Research activities on radio channel modeling include several topics related to MIMO channel modeling, smart antennas design and analysis of multipath environments for development of new channel models. Studies on stochastic geometrically-based double directional channel models and distribution of radio-signal in urban multipath environments have been performed, as well as extensive analysis using ray tracing tool, processing of obtained raw data and interpretation of data for feeding the models. Special focus has been given to an open-source platform for cooperation and development of deterministic geometrically-based double directional channel model, which is in its initial research phase.
Cooperation with relevant institutions/European projects:
-  University of Bologna, Professor Vittorio Degli-Esposti
-  COST Action 2100 - Pervasive Mobile & Ambient Wireless Communications, www.cost2100.org

Smart metering/ smart grids area of research  

  1. Simula Research Laboratory, Norway (www.simula.no) Contact point: Yan Zhang (yanzhang@simula.no)

Cognitive radio for smart grid

We have great interest in exploiting dynamic spectrum access in smart grid. For this, we proposed a new cognitive radio based communications architecture for the smart grid. The layered architecture is decomposed into three subareas: cognitive home area network (HAN), cognitive neighborhood area network (NAN), and cognitive wide area network (WAN), depending on the service ranges and potential applications. In the infrastructure, we identify a very unique challenge in the smart grid, i.e., the necessity of joint resource management in the decomposed NAN and WAN geographic subareas in order to achieve network scale performance optimization. Illustrative results indicate that the joint NAN/WAN design is able to intelligently allocate spectra to support the communication requirements in the smart grid. For more detailed information, please refer to: http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/freeabs_all.jsp?arnumber=6033030

Machine-to-Machine (M2M) for smart grid communications
The networked smart meters and the advanced metering infrastructure are enabled by M2M communications in the smart grid. We have investigated the M2M communications in home area networks in order to flexibly manage a large variety of devices. We also studied the optimal gateway placement issue in both grid topology and random topology in the smart grid. These two topologies are two common network architectures in the smart grid communications, considering the home energy management system in apartments or houses. In the grid topology, the network has the HAN nodes residing in regularly located buildings. This topology is common and useful for the multiple-story buildings with a number of apartments in each floor. In the random topology, the HAN nodes are deployed in the randomly distributed houses. This topology is applicable to a community with several houses that are randomly located. For more information, please refer to:  http://ieeexplore.ieee.org/xpl/freeabs_all.jsp?arnumber=5741145

  1. Technische Universität Dortmund Lehrstuhl für Kommunikationsnetze/Communication Networks Institute (CNI) (http://www.cni.tu-dortmund.de)

    Contact point: Christian Mueller  christian5.mueller@tu-dortmund.de
    Prof. Christian Wietfeld  christian.wietfeld@tu-dortmund.de

Concerning research for ICT in Smart Grid CNI is actively involved in two German projects of the E-Energy initiative and the national platform on electric, one project funded by the EU and one project within the competence center for electric vehicles in NRW. The E-Energy research project E-DeMa focuses on Smart Grid communications and the development of regional future energy marketplaces, where prosumers (producers and consumers) are actively involved in the energy distribution & consumption process. Therefore research activities includes evaluating existing and future wireless technologies for Smart Grid applications in particular for Distribution Networks, like Smart Metering, Demand Side Management and decentralized energy generation. Next to E-DeMa CNI takes part in the E-Mobility project, that aims at developing and demonstrating a grid compatible charge and clearing infrastructure for electric mobility. In both projects CNI concentrates on the design of a communication infrastructure and its evaluation. Within the EU project E-Dash an active electric vehicle fleet management and brokerage for efficient charge management is developed and evaluated. System verification and certification aspects for novel ICT components in charge points and electric vehicles are investigated by a competence center for electric mobility (TIE-IN).

The University of Dortmund presented results of their investigations (simulation models) concerning the propagation characteristics for installed applications in buildings, and in particular basements, for several frequency bands between 169 MHz and 2.4 GHz (document SRDMG(13)102). Results of this work are also reflected in Draft ECC Report 189. The conclusion is that frequency ranges in the sub- 1GHz range are more suited for applications with the need for indoor installation such as basements (e.g. smart metering, some home automation applications).

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Category 2. Projects/activities in which the ECO is currently involved 

  1. FP7 BeFEMTO EU project

 ECO has been invited to be part of an Advisory Group of the FP7 BeFEMTO EU project (BeFEMTO project: http://www.ict-befemto.eu/) that will meet physically about once a year. BeFEMTO is a proposal which was submitted to the next Call 4 within the Framework Program 7 (FP7) of the European Commission (EC) and has been recently approved. This consortium is targetting LTE-Advanced Femtocells as a key enabler for achieving new Radio Access enhancements, thanks to innovative Interference Mitigation algorithms, Networking aspects and Routing algorithms, whilst supporting new services & applications and where the regulatory aspects are playing a key role for the Femto deployment success. The BeFEMTO is focusing not only on Home Femto but will address FemtoNets (Mesh in Corporate or Building environment, together with Outdoor Fixed-Relay and Mobile Femtos where the key selling points will be higher spectral efficiency to enable true wireless broadband, and decreased Transmit Power). BeFEMTO project has gained momentum since their Kick-Off meeting in January 2010. 5 Technical Internal Reports (Confidential) have been released to European Commission.

2.  Work at the International Symposiums on EMC

In September 2010, the ECO took part in the organisation of one day workshop organised at the 9th International Symposium on EMC joint with 20th International Wroclaw Symposium on EMC (EMC Europe 2010) in collaboration with representatives of the National Institute of Telecommunications.

At the EMC Symposium ECO was invited to organise one day  SEAMCAT workshop during ICTP (International Centre for Theoretical Physics) – ITU (BDT) workshop on applications of wireless sensor networks for environmental monitoring in developing countries.

  1. Work at the 3nd International Workshop on Cognitive Radio and Advanced Spectrum Management

The ECO is invited to present SEAMCAT to CogART 2010 (the 3nd International Workshop on Cognitive Radio and Advanced Spectrum Management, organised by institutions including the Universities of Aarlborg and Rome), which this year will be held in Rome in November 2010. 

  1. SEAMCAT usage outside CEPT (for the purpose of AI 1.17 WRC-12)

 The research is funded by the Malaysian Communication and Multimedia Commission (MCMC) as a part of Malaysian Spectrum Research Working Party 3 (WP3) that involve in preparation for the WRC-12 under the agenda item 1.17.

For these purposes, the research consider the identification the spectrum for systems operating in the 790-862MHz taking into account that the operation of broadcasting stations and IMT-Advanced service in the same geographical area may create incompatibility issues.

This research activity considers both deterministic method applying Minimum Coupling Loss (MCL) and statistical using the Monte Carlo approach proposed in SEAMCAT to determine coexistence requirement and performance evaluation for both systems. Results will assess the current ongoing research in the digital dividend band for the possibilities of coexistence between the mobile and the broadcasting service to operate without performance degradation. The intersystem interference mitigation will be investigated.

  1. Symposium and Exhibition on Electromagnetic Compatibility (Poland)

The Wroclaw EMC Symposium is an oldest European regular International Symposium on Electromagnetic Compatibility issues organized in Wroclaw (Poland) since 1972. Since 2010, the Wroclaw Symposium is part of EMC Europe Symposium. This year EMC Europe 2010 will celebrate 20th edition of the Wroclaw International Symposium on EMC.

The symposium gives the unique possibility to present the progress and results of the work and to exchange ideas, discuss different points of view and share experiences with colleagues involved in electromagnetic compatibility of devices and systems, spectrum management, monitoring and congestion.

Since 2002 the ECC (on behalf of SEAMCAT Management Commitee (now the SEAMCAT Technical Group (STG)) and the ERO (now the ECO) experts working with compatibility issues are attending International Symposiums on EMC (Wroclaw, Poland). A number of papers dealing with spectrum management relating to the introduction and deployment of different applications were presented discussed during these Symposiums. Articles were  mainly focused on SEAMCAT but also addressed various issues relating to the ongoing activities within the ECC (satellite, terrestrial, RRC-06).

In September 2010, the ECO took part in the one day workshop organised at the 9th International Symposium on EMC joint with 20th International Wroclaw Symposium on EMC (EMC Europe 2010) in collaboration with representatives of National Institute of Telecommunications. This EMC Symposium held under the auspices of Dr Hamadoun I. Touré (Secretary-General of the ITU).

In September  2011, the ECO attended International EMC Symposium (University of York),  the paper called “Spectrum Sensing capabilities   in SEAMCAT”  dealing with the calculations of the maximum in-block e.i.r.p of the WSD (P_WSD_in-block) based on a fixed location between the WSD and the DVB-T receiver was introduced.

In September 2012, the ECO attended EMC Symposium (Saplenza University of Rome). Paper called “Broadcasting service modelled by using SEAMCAT” was prepared by the ECO experts dealing with the mapping of EBU Technical and SEAMCAT results. SEAMCAT plugin “Location probability” presented providing additional functionalities to SEAMCAT from the point of view of conducting compatibility studies to assess impact on broadcasting service. This work was carried out in collaboration with the EBU and BNetzA.

6. Collaboration with Polish National Institute of Telecommunications

In December 2009, the Polish administration presented at the STG meeting document dealing with the external propagation model can be used within SEAMCAT. The Longley-Rice (Area prediction model) propagation model  was developed as Seamcat plug-in in the National Institute of Telecommunications (Poland) in co-operation with the Wroclaw University of Technology (Poland). The task was performed under Research Project of the Polish Ministry of Science and Higher Education entitled: Next generation teleinformatics services - technology, application and market aspects (no. PBZ-MNiSW-02/II/2007).

Longley-Rice model (also known as the Irregular terrain model (ITM)) was created for the needs of frequency planning in television broadcasting in the United States in the 1960s and was extensively used for preparing the channel plans for VHF/UHF broadcasting. Longley-Rice has two parts: a model for predictions over an area and a model for point-to-point link. It works for the distances between 1 – 2000 km, in a wide frequency range from 20 MHz to 20 GHz.

In addition, in January 2010, the Polish National Institute of Telecommunications has provided the ECO with an implementation of P.1546-3 “Method for point-to-area predictions for terrestrial services in the frequency range 30 MHz to 3 000 MHz”.

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Category 3: Projects/activity which may be monitored but where speficific actions will not be proposed for the time being 
1. Electromagnetic compatibility (EMC) of radio systems, networks and space-scattered fields, including its electromagnetic safety (EMS) and electromagnetic ecology (EME) (Belarusian state university of informatics and radioelectronics R&D laboratory of electromagnetic compatibility).

 Research of fundamental properties of electromagnetic environment (EME) formed in places with high population density at mass application of modern and perspective systems of radio telecommunications (cell phones, mobile Internet, RFID systems, various wireless industrial and residential controlling equipment, etc.), and also taking into account a quasi-stationary electromagnetic background of a various nature (man-made noise, powerful broadcasting stations, radars, etc.).

Statistical properties of EME in space-scattered wireless networks and fields of multi-users radio equipment affecting its intra-network EMC and EMS are studied. The analysis is based on the standard propagation channel model, a Poisson model of random spatial distribution of transmitters, and a threshold-based model of the victim receptor behavior (radio receiver or human body). An original statistical models of ensembles of interferences for this conditions are proposed. Invariance of these models to fading and to e.i.r.p. distribution of transmitters at constant spatial density of the last is proved.

This models give possibilities to quantify the positive effect of linear filtering (e.g. by directional antennas) and to propose a generalized system EMC parameters of radio receivers, transmitters and antennas. The analysis results in formulation of a tradeoff relationship between the network density and the outage probability, which is a result of the interplay between random geometry of node locations, the propagation path loss and the distortion effects at the victim receiver.

  1. Measurements equipment and test beds (European Commission Joint research Centre (JRC))

The very low signal levels of certain wireless technologies such as Ultra Wideband (UWB) pose a significant challenge in terms of test and measurement for regulatory compliance and RF compatibility. Even if measurements can be performed in a conducted manner, signal levels may be on the edge of delectability. In cases when radiated measurements may be the only choice, e.g. for consumer products with integrated PCB antennas, this issue is even aggravated. The right choice of equipment is therefore essential.

A typical wireless testbed includes a digital storage oscilloscope, a “traditional” spectrum analyzer, and a vector signal analyzer to demodulate digital signals. Key parameters to consider include acquisition speed and bandwidth, sample rate, resolution bandwidth, and noise figure. For RF compatibility tests arbitrary waveform generators (AWGs) can be used to generate victim and/or interfering signals. Ideally, all test equipment should be networked and controllable from a central management entity to allow for automated testing.

Fundamental but not trivial is the choice of appropriate active and passive components specified for the measurement frequency range. These include low noise amplifiers (LNAs), low-loss cables and connectors, RF splitters/combiners, and attenuators.

For radiated measurements the use of an appropriate anechoic chamber is essential. For frequencies above 1 GHz a fully shielded chamber with an shielding level of 80 dB -140 dB is required. The chamber shall be large enough to allow a measuring distance greater than the effective far-field distance of the equipment under test (EUT) and measurement antenna setup. The typical minimum measurement distance is 3 m.

The chamber should contain an adjustable antenna support for the measurement antenna and a turntable for the EUT. The turntable is used to rotate the EUT through 360° in the horizontal plane and to support it at a suitable height (typically 1 m.) above the floor level. Both turntable and antenna support should be remotely controllable.

Various types of measurement antennas exist, the choice is made depending on the EUT and frequency range. For frequencies above 1 GHz broadband horn antennas are most common.

Depending on the scope of the measurements additional test equipment may be required, for instance protocol testers, or network performance testers that allow measuring the impact of interference on the quality of services such as data, voice, and video.

3. Measurements activity including type of equipment (Performance data presented below refers only to the professional equipment (Rohde & Schwarz)).

Signal Generators. RF vector signal generators generate signals with digital modulation for digital data communication. Frequency range 9 kHz mostly to 6 GHz, with exceptions to 44 GHz   Signal levels –145 dBm to +19 dBm (Peak Envelope Power) SSB Phase noise< –136 dBc, typically. –139 dBc Analog signal generators from 9 kHz to 70 GHz Signal levels -130 dBm to +13 dBm < –83 dBc Baseband signal generators  with a bandwidth up 528 MHz from DC.

Spectrum analyzers and signal analyzers from 20 Hz to 67 GHz. Phase noise typically . –128 dBc Total measurement uncertainty 0.3 dB. Both spectrum analysis and signal demodulation to check signal properties are supported.

Wireless device function test for cellular, non-cellular and broadcast technologies in wireless devices. Include a signal generator for network emulation, a wave form generator for function test without network emulation, and a signal analyzer Can be used in all phases of product development and production and supports all common cellular and non-cellular wireless technologies 70 MHz to 6 GHz output signal level –130 dBm to –5 dBm output level uncertainty < 0.6 dB.

Radio network analyzers; scanners for optimizing mobile radio networks. Frequency 30 MHz to 6 GHz.

EMI and EMS test equipment; EMI test from 9 Hz to 40 GHz. Maximum-precision, standard-compliant EMI measurements. Full compliance tests to commercial and military standards EMS measurements on sound broadcast and TV receivers, satellite receivers and DVB receivers.

Radar test for phase-coherent measurements on radar frontends in development, production and service. To test and calibrate multichannel radar frontends in development, calibration and service, phase-coherent test signals are required. These may be modulated or unmodulated pulse sequences or even complex, real-world scenarios. Frequency range 1 GHz to 24 GHz; maximum number of RF channels 10 Level range –135 dBm to –17 dBm.

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Category 4: Areas which are not covered by specifically-identified projects 
1.  Collaboration with Radio Systems Research Group at University of Vigo (Spain)
Main research line is about the characterization and modeling of the radio channel, indoors or outdoors, terrestrial or for satellite links, in a wide range of frequencies, from UHF to 60 GHz, using general purpose equipment as spectrum analyzers, or using radio channel sounders specifically designed, built and calibrated in the group. The characterization and modeling refers to narrowband or wideband channel response, fading, delay spread, interferences and noise, including shot noise. Research group is designing systems that use different techniques to mitigate the channel impairments and develop and test prototypes of these systems.

Other research lines deal with electromagnetic smog and innovative techniques to reduce the human exposure to electromagnetic fields, mainly in sensitive areas, as schools. Research group also developed several detection and location systems base on GPS (outdoors), automotive radar, Zigbee networks or RFID. Research group is currently  working on a research project (RFID- from Farm to Fork) related to food traceability based on RFID, funded by the EU under the VII Framework.

  1. Collaboration with research centre IBBT-SMIT (Vrije Universiteit, Brussel)

In general, research center performs socio-economic impact assessment and business modeling with regard to Future Internet technologies. Many of past and current projects revolve around advanced wireless technologies, and dedicate particular attention to spectrum management issues, especially in the field of Cognitive Radio Systems and Software Defined Radio. Activities include construction and validation of business scenarios, developing business architectures and, more recently, wider impact assessment (for example looking at issues of sustainability and linking new communications technologies to higher level policy goals such as energy efficiency). Research center is also dealing with comparison business issues between Cognitive Pilot Channel, spectrum sensing and database approaches.

Current projects include:

- CONSERN (EU FP7 STREP project on cognitive self-growing energy efficient networks);
- UNIVERSELF (EU FP7 IP project on autonomic functionalities for converged future internet systems);
- ESSENCES (Flemish Research Council funded project on spectrum sensing, including regulatory and business analysis);
- NG Wireless (Flemish IBBT funded project on radio systems co-existence and co-operation, in which research centre investigates cost issues related to interference).

  1. Collaboration with Institute of Geodesy and Navigation (University FAF Munich, Germany)

The Institute of Geodesy and Navigation at the University FAF Munich is doing many research activities investigating the feasibility of the provision of GNSS services in the band  2 483.5 – 2 500 MHz and 5 010 – 5 0305 010 – 5 030 MHz with special focus on:

  • Identification of advantages and drawbacks for the service providers and for the users
          •          Interference issues with other services transmitting in the neighbor bands

The Institute of Geodesy and Navigation at the University FAF Munich is consulting the German Aerospace Centre (DLR), the Federal Government and Ministries and the European Commission in many coordination activities:

  • ICG - International Committee on GNSS  (Multilateral forum setting out the high level objectives and definitions of interoperability and compatibility)
    •         Bilateral forums with the different GNSS providers  (Transfer of high level objectives regarding interoperability and compatibility into technical methodology and criteria)

Read more about the Institute of Geodesy and Navigation at the University FAF Munich here.


ECO contact for Research Activity related enquiries: Stella Lyubchenko (ECO) 

e-mail stella.lyubchenko@eco.cept.org or phone +45 33 89 63 09



Updated: 16 February 2017, 11:25