ID-NRU - Standalone and non Standalone NR-U for coexistence and operation in unlicensed spectrum

Start: 01 October 2018
End: 10 June 2019
Funding: Industry
Status: Due
Division: Communication Networks
Department: Mobile Networks (MONET)

The Centre Tecnològic de Telecomunicacions de Catalunya (CTTC) and InterDigital, Inc. (NASDAQ: IDCC), a mobile research and development company, have expanded a joint research agreement to continue to evolve the next generation of wireless technology.  Together, CTTC and InterDigital are developing Beyond 5G extensions to the 3GPP NR standard that build on the existing Release 16 3GPP Work Item by extending NR-U to millimeter wave unlicensed spectrum (NR-U for mmWave).

The new agreement between CTTC and InterDigital will focus on NR and NR-U, and coexistence studies with Wi-Fi/WiGig, including technology development, system proof-of-concepts, and simulation work, among other areas. An important result of the work is the design and development of a 3GPP compliant NR network simulator, with NR-U capabilities, designed as a pluggable module to ns-3, the network simulator, popular in research and academia. The interest in ns-3 is due to its open source nature, as well as the fact that it offers multi-RAT (Radio Access Technologies) and multi-band simulation capabilities, with Wi-Fi/WiGig, LTE (LTE-A, LAA, LTE-U) already openly available.
The final objective is to work towards making the standalone cellular in unlicensed mmWave a reality, which will pave the way for new verticals like the Industry 4.0, among others.

NR, the global standard being driven by 3GPP for a new 5G air interface, is a continuing part of the mobile broadband evolution to deliver on the requirements of 5G. According to 3GPP’s standardization timeline, Release 16 will submit an initial full 5G system by early 2020.

InterDigital and CTTC have an established history and highly-respected research relationship that stems from consortium collaborations such as in European H2020 5G-Public Private Partnership (PPP) projects. In December 2018, 3GPP successfully concluded a Study Item, and has recently committed to a Work Item on NR-U. Researchers at both CTTC and InterDigital have evaluated and publicized work that highlights performance and capabilities of advancing NR-U into millimetre wave spectrum.

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