Modelling, Analysis, and Design of Ultra-Dense Cellular Networks

Lead Research Organisation: Queen's University of Belfast
Department Name: Electronics Electrical Eng and Comp Sci

Abstract

Wireless communications technology enables us to seamlessly access many multimedia services, e.g., stored multimedia (e.g., video on-demand), live streaming (e.g., Internet live sport networks, Internet radio stations), and realtime interactive streaming (e.g., online games, video conference, e-education), etc. As such, wireless communications technology has rapidly gained a crucial role and become an important aspect of life.
There is a strong, credible body of evidence, suggesting that mobile network operators are facing many formidable tasks but exciting areas of endeavour. Of most concern is the increase in ever-growing wireless/mobile devices and the huge demand in data rates associated with this. It is predicted that the number of mobile-connected devices will exceed 11.5 billion by 2019 (nearly 1.5 mobile devices per capita), which poses a huge traffic demand for ubiquitous communications. On the one hand, it is anticipated that we will witness an up to 10000- fold growth in wireless data traffic by the year 2030, and that of the UK alone is projected to increase between 23-fold and 297-fold over the period 2012-2030.
The future 5G cellular network is expected to achieve as much as 1000 times data rate relative to its current 4G counterpart. On the one hand, as many as 50 billion devices will be connected to the Internet by 2020 request seamless connectivity and mobility. Data rates are projected to increase by a factor of ten every five years, and with the emerging Internet of Things (IoT) predicted to wirelessly connect trillions of devices across the globe, without novel approaches, future mobile networks (5G) will grind to a halt unless more capacity is created.
One of the most attractive solutions is the implementation of ultra-dense networks constituted by the combination of macro-cells and small-cells and exploited the emerging technologies of millimetre wave (mm-wave) frequency bands, large-scale antennas arrays. But while these enabling technologies constitute one of the most attractive approaches, i.e., ultra-dense cellular networks, to improving the capacity and coverage of wireless systems, the "ultra-dense" aspect poses fundamental challenges, which urgently require solutions.
Most importantly, the tool of system-level performance evaluation and optimization is very essential for telecommunication service providers. However, it is usually conducted by relying on numerical simulations, which are often time-consuming and even extremely difficult in the context of 5G ultra-dense networks. At present, no sound but essential mathematical methodologies towards the design of practical communication protocols and transmission techniques for ultra-dense heterogeneous cellular networks are available.
Motivated by this lack of tractable solution, this research project proposes a mathematical model to take into account the practical aspects of 5G ultra-dense networks, i.e., highly dense distribution, dynamic random topologies, and heterogeneous interference. The unique feature of the project is to augment the recent advances in mathematics, random process, and signal processing theory involved by both base stations and mobile devices in ultra-dense cellular networks for recovering the transmitted voice, data, video, etc. This allows us to integrate interference management between large and small cells along with a large number of transmit/receive antennas and higher transmission bandwidth in mm-wave frequency bands. These include the development of new theoretical framework that is informed by the limitations of a practical system not currently considered in the context of "extremely dense networks" of current cellular systems.

Planned Impact

The beneficiaries include users of wireless connections who will expect high data rate; business who will depend on high data rate connections to enhance customers' experience; industry who will need energy-efficient solutions; government organizations who are seeking solutions to more efficient services through ubiquitous access "anywhere, anyhow" and at any time (e.g., National Health Services - NHS).

Through our social media group (LinkedIn group), we will contribute to raising awareness among general public of the outcomes of our project, 5G technologies and their anticipate capabilities, with a view to generating demand for 5G and its associated services.

Our research will support the quest for ubiquitous access to a wider spectrum of applications and services offered at a lower cost, with increased resilience and continuity, with higher efficiency of resources usage.
5G is expected to meet requirements from massive broadband, mission critical, communications, as well as covering the needs of massive machine type communications and possible other usage of wireless communication, from low to high mobility, using microwave frequencies below 6GHz or at mm-waves, with various deployment schemes. From the perspective of users, the project will be of interest to the technology industry in the UK given the expected outcomes (models and designs) that help to depict the future 5G wireless networks in the form of ultra-dense cellular networks. New revenue generating streams and new value chain models can be seen in the UK's connectivity segment, which currently accounts for 35% of the UK's ICT market revenues. Further down the value chain, end-users can benefit from a wide range of applications that are enabled through the core advantages, i.e., high capacity and high efficiency of ultra-dense cellular networks. Examples include
a) Wearable devices that can monitor and transmit data in near-real-time to a health service instead of being manually monitored in a costly hospital. This helps to reduce the healthcare costs to the NHS and enhance patients' quality of life;
b) Transportation: real-time information sharing between vehicles, which may reduce congestion (thus less CO2 emission); video streaming via full 5G network connectivity on high-speed trains, which make travelling more enjoyable
Finally, system-level performance evaluation and optimization of cellular networks are usually conducted by relying on numerical simulations, which are often time-consuming and cannot reveal additional insights into the effect of various parameters on the system performance without analyzing a sufficiently large set of data. As such, the availability of the mathematical modelling and methodology in this project will be very essential for telecommunications industry (e.g., service providers) to verify new protocols and algorithms (without expensive trials) before being ready for the practical implementation.

The PI has estimated and well planned all the cost related to achieve the research impact of this proposal, e.g, organising special sessions, special issues, workshops, and visiting industry and academia. Furthermore, the opportunity to engage directly with industry partner Keysight Technologies, academic collaborators, and other industrial collaborators will expose the project's researcher to world class wireless communications expertise, which will enable him to disseminate the research outcome and gain valuable feedback.

Publications

10 25 50
 
Description The future 5G cellular network is expected to achieve as much as 1000 times data rate relative to its current 4G counterpart. On the one hand, as many as 50 billion devices will be connected to the Internet by 2020 request seamless connectivity and mobility. Data rates are projected to increase by a factor of ten every five years, and with the emerging Internet of Things (IoT) predicted to wirelessly connect trillions of devices across the globe, without novel approaches, future mobile networks (5G) will grind to a halt unless more capacity is created.
One of the most attractive solutions is the implementation of ultra-dense networks constituted by the combination of macro-cells and small-cells and exploited the emerging technologies of millimetre wave (mm-wave) frequency bands, large-scale antennas arrays. But while these enabling technologies constitute one of the most attractive approaches, i.e., ultra-dense cellular networks, to improving the capacity and coverage of wireless systems, the "ultra-dense" aspect poses fundamental challenges, which urgently require solutions.
Most importantly, the tool of system-level performance evaluation and optimization is very essential for telecommunication service providers. However, it is usually conducted by relying on numerical simulations, which are often time-consuming and even extremely difficult in the context of 5G ultra-dense networks. At present, no sound but essential mathematical methodologies towards the design of practical communication protocols and transmission techniques for ultra-dense heterogeneous cellular networks are available.
Motivated by this lack of tractable solution, this research project proposes a mathematical model to take into account the practical aspects of 5G ultra-dense networks, i.e., highly dense distribution, dynamic random topologies, and heterogeneous interference. The unique feature of the project is to augment the recent advances in mathematics, random process, and signal processing theory involved by both base stations and mobile devices in ultra-dense cellular networks for recovering the transmitted voice, data, video, etc. This allows us to integrate interference management between large and small cells along with a large number of transmit/receive antennas and higher transmission bandwidth in mm-wave frequency bands. These include the development of new theoretical framework that is informed by the limitations of a practical system not currently considered in the context of "extremely dense networks" of current cellular systems.
Exploitation Route • To research and develop a novel interference management to capture the level of randomness of interference distribution in ultra-dense environment. This will enable understanding of the interference impact on practical potential of 5G cellular networks in the presence of heterogeneous network interference.
• To design and build a mathematical model to capture the realistic high path-loss and shadowing effect at mm-wave frequencies, the most critical challenge for mm-wave communications, which is even more stringent for highly dense network topologies.
• To propose a new mathematical methodology to investigate practical aspects (e.g., favourable propagation, pilot contamination effect, and beamforming techniques) of the massive MIMO in the mm-wave applications. This enables practical translation of massive MIMO to mm-wave communications in the context of ultra-dense cellular networks.
Sectors Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software)

 
Description The technology proposed in this EPSRC research grant has been utilised to propose a new telecommunications networks that can cope with natural disaster. As a result, the PI of this research has successfully developed a new telecommunication model for catastrophe tolerance. This research has been awarded the Newton Prize 2017. The award has been featured in many public media as follows: (a) http://www.qub.ac.uk/News/Allnews/QueensUniversityresearcherwinsprestigious2017NewtonPrize.html?utm_source=Facebook&utm_medium=Post%20and%20Link&utm_campaign=Newton%20Prize%20Winner&utm_term=Newton%20Prize%20Winner&utm_content=Post%20and%20Link (b) http://www.newsletter.co.uk/news/researcher-at-queen-s-university-makes-wireless-breakthrough-1-8247838 (c) The story was running on U105 radio (d) http://www.preventionweb.net/news/view/55951 (PreventionWeb, a participatory web platform for the disaster risk reduction community and service of the UN Office for Disaster Risk Reduction (UNISDR). The primary purpose is to facilitate an understanding of the subject of disaster risk reduction (DRR) and the work of professionals in this area by providing current news and views on the topic, and tools for exchange and collaboration. Our audience includes specialists working at local, country and regional levels, as well as non-specialists - teachers and students, citizens and journalists. The platform receives an average of 80,000 visits per month) (e) There was a piece on BBC NI Breakfast News on TV (f) http://www.belfastlive.co.uk/news/belfast-news/queens-uni-researcher-wins-top-13908702 g) https://www.belfasttelegraph.co.uk/news/northern-ireland/wireless-it-system-capable-of-transmitting-during-extreme-weather-wins-top-award-36325159.html (h) http://www.newtonfund.ac.uk/news/latest-news/171116/ (i) https://www.britishcouncil.org/education/science/newton-prize/vietnam
First Year Of Impact 2017
Sector Digital/Communication/Information Technologies (including Software),Environment
Impact Types Societal

 
Description Newton Prize 2017
Amount £200,000 (GBP)
Organisation Newton Fund 
Sector Public
Country United Kingdom
Start 01/2018 
End 12/2018
 
Description Huawei France R&D - Dr. Kamel Tourki 
Organisation Huawei Technologies
Country China 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution I have closely work with an excellent research team at Huawei France on various aspects of small-cell networks and heterogeneous networks.
Collaborator Contribution - visit to Huawei France R&D and support in meeting with many experts in Huawei - Huawei France R&D would help you to develop standards contribution to present the key points to the relevant standards bodies. - writing joint paper, organizing special issues on top-notch journals and special sessions on the flag-ship conferences.
Impact 1) N.-P. Nguyen, H. Q. Ngo, T. Q. Duong, H. D. Tuan, and K. Tourki, "Secure Massive MIMO with the Artificial Noise-Aided Downlink Training," IEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications, 2) T. X. Doan, H. Q. Ngo, T. Q. Duong, and K. Tourki, "On the Performance of Multigroup Multicast Cell-Free Massive MIMO," IEEE Communications Letter,
Start Year 2017
 
Description Keysight Technologies Inc - Dr. Francisco J. Garcia 
Organisation Keysight Technologies
Country United States 
Sector Private 
PI Contribution Closely work with the industry partner Keysight Technologies on various aspects of Ultra-dense networks
Collaborator Contribution • Use our competitive University Research Program to submit proposals for funding student research. Applications to this program are solicited twice a year and the funds could range from £10-30K per application. • Consult in the areas of systems, communications and measurement science. • Participate in regular review meetings. • Contribute with seminars on systems, communications and measurement science. • Support in meeting with many experts in Keysight, with excellent research teams working on various aspects of wireless communications and networks. • Help to develop standards contribution to present the key points to the relevant standards bodies.
Impact N/A
Start Year 2017
 
Description Prof. Hoang Duong Tuan from University of Technology Sydney 
Organisation University of Technology Sydney
Country Australia 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Dr. Duong is collaborating with Prof. Tuan Hoang in developing several research papers in this project
Collaborator Contribution Dr. Tuan Hoang is the world expert in the field of optimisation which is very important in the project.
Impact A. Nasir, H. D. Tuan, T. Q. Duong and H. V. Poor, "Secure and Energy-Efficient Beamforming for Simultaneous Information and Energy Transfer," IEEE Trans. on Wireless Communications vol. 16 , no. 11, November 2017, pp. 7523 - 7537 H. H. M. Tam, H. D. Tuan, A. A. Nasir, T. Q. Duong and H. V. Poor, "MIMO Energy Harvesting in Full-Duplex Multi-user Networks," IEEE Trans. on Wireless Communications, vol. 16 , no. 5, May 2017, pp. 3282 - 3297 V.-D. Nguyen, T. Q. Duong, H. D. Tuan, O.-S. Shin, and H. Vincent Poor, "Spectral and Energy Efficiencies in Full-Duplex Wireless Information and Power Transfer," IEEE Trans. on Communications, vol. 65, no. 5, May 2017, pp. 2220 - 2233 A. A. Nasir, H. D. Tuan, D. T. Ngo, T. Q. Duong and H. V. Poor, "Beamforming Design for Wireless Information and Power Transfer Systems: Receive Power-Splitting vs Transmit Time-Switching," IEEE Trans. on Communications, vol. 65 , no. 2, February 2017, pp. 876 - 889 A. A. Nasir, H. D. Tuan, T. Q. Duong and H. V. Poor, "Secrecy Rate Beamforming for Multi-cell Networks with Information and Energy Harvesting," IEEE Trans. on Signal Processing, vol. 65 , no. 3, February 2017, pp. 677 - 689
Start Year 2017
 
Description Prof. Vincent Poor from Princeton University 
Organisation Princeton University
Country United States 
Sector Academic/University 
PI Contribution Dr. Duong has collaborated with Prof. Poor in publishing several technical journals from this project
Collaborator Contribution Prof. Poor is the world leading experts in the field of wireless communications and information theory
Impact A. Nasir, H. D. Tuan, T. Q. Duong and H. V. Poor, "Secure and Energy-Efficient Beamforming for Simultaneous Information and Energy Transfer," IEEE Trans. on Wireless Communications vol. 16 , no. 11, November 2017, pp. 7523 - 7537 H. H. M. Tam, H. D. Tuan, A. A. Nasir, T. Q. Duong and H. V. Poor, "MIMO Energy Harvesting in Full-Duplex Multi-user Networks," IEEE Trans. on Wireless Communications, vol. 16 , no. 5, May 2017, pp. 3282 - 3297 V.-D. Nguyen, T. Q. Duong, H. D. Tuan, O.-S. Shin, and H. Vincent Poor, "Spectral and Energy Efficiencies in Full-Duplex Wireless Information and Power Transfer," IEEE Trans. on Communications, vol. 65, no. 5, May 2017, pp. 2220 - 2233 A. A. Nasir, H. D. Tuan, D. T. Ngo, T. Q. Duong and H. V. Poor, "Beamforming Design for Wireless Information and Power Transfer Systems: Receive Power-Splitting vs Transmit Time-Switching," IEEE Trans. on Communications, vol. 65 , no. 2, February 2017, pp. 876 - 889 A. A. Nasir, H. D. Tuan, T. Q. Duong and H. V. Poor, "Secrecy Rate Beamforming for Multi-cell Networks with Information and Energy Harvesting," IEEE Trans. on Signal Processing, vol. 65 , no. 3, February 2017, pp. 677 - 689
Start Year 2017
 
Description Chair of 3rd EAI International Conference on Industrial Networks and Intelligent Systems 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact The conference is striving to provides an excellent forum for researchers, engineers, and practitioners to present and discuss the latest technology, advancement, and future directions and trends in industrial networks and applications, intelligent systems and applications, information processing and data analysis, hardware and software design and development and Security & Privacy.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://archive.iniscom.org/2017/show/home
 
Description Chair of The 2nd International Conference on Recent Advances in Signal Processing, Telecommunications & Computing (SigTelCom2018) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Industry/Business
Results and Impact Full 1 day conference with 100 participants from 23 countries. Most of them are industrial partners, researchers, and post-graduate students
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2018
URL http://www.sigtelcom.net/2018/
 
Description Invited Speaker for the Newton Day in Vietnam 
Form Of Engagement Activity A press release, press conference or response to a media enquiry/interview
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact I am the invited speaker for the Newton Day in Vietnam in November 2017
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://www.britishcouncil.vn/gioi-thieu/bao-chi/cong-bo-giai-thuong-newton-viet-nam-2017
 
Description Invited Speaker for the Newton Event in London 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach National
Primary Audience Policymakers/politicians
Results and Impact I am the invited speaker for the Newton Event in London in December 2017
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL https://www.britishcouncil.org/education/science/newton-prize/vietnam
 
Description Keynote Speaker of The International Conference on Advanced Technologies for Communications (ATC) 
Form Of Engagement Activity Participation in an activity, workshop or similar
Part Of Official Scheme? No
Geographic Reach International
Primary Audience Public/other audiences
Results and Impact I was giving the keynote speech at The International Conference on Advanced Technologies for Communications (ATC). This is an annual conference series, since 2008, co-organized by the Radio & Electronics Association of Vietnam (REV) and the IEEE Communications Society (IEEE ComSoc).

The goal of the series is twofold: to foster an international forum for scientific and technological exchange among Vietnamese and worldwide scientists and engineers in the fields of electronics, communications and related areas, and to gather their high-quality research contributions.
Year(s) Of Engagement Activity 2017
URL http://atc-conf.org/atc2017/