i2CAT joins 6G-XR, a research project that seeks to enable next-generation distributed research infrastructures and extended reality (XR) services


The i2CAT Foundation has joined 6G-XR (6G eXperimental Research infrastructure to enable next-generation XR services), a research project funded under Horizon Europe’s European Smart Networks and Services Joint Undertaking (SNS JU) with almost 10 million euros. The project’s consortium comprises 15 European partners, including academic institutions, research centres, industrial leaders, and non-profit organizations. During the next three years, all the partners will come together in 6G-XR to strengthen European leadership in 6G technologies by enabling next-generation eXtended Reality (XR) services and infrastructures that will provide beyond- state-of-the-art capabilities towards the 6G era.

The project will develop an experimental multisite Research Infrastructure (RI) to provide a validation platform for various 6G use cases by developing enablers for networking and computing, radio access technologies beyond 5G, enablers for XR services with in-build federation, trial management, abstraction tools as well as energy measurement frameworks.

The i2CAT Foundation will lead Work Package 4, “Experimental RAN Infrastructure”, to deploy 6G-XR’s beyond 5G cellular network infrastructure. This network will be built upon three fundamental (innovation) pillars:

  • 3GPP evolutions beyond 5G.
  • The adoption of open-source initiatives for radio network architecture and software.
  • The use of disruptive 6G transmission technologies.

The network will be distributed on different nodes located in Spain and Finland. The node in Spain will include the interconnection between the i2CAT’s infrastructure in Barcelona and the 5TONIC infrastructure in Madrid, managed by Telefónica, Ericsson and Capgemini. In addition, i2CAT will lead the research efforts on enabling next-generation multiuser holographic communications with volumetric and realistic users’ representations (i.e. 3D holograms) across distributed and heterogeneous networked environments.

“6G-XR will demonstrate and validate the performance of innovative 6G applications, focusing on demanding immersive applications such as interactive holographic communications. Under the umbrella of 6G-XR, i2CAT will build a reference Research Infrastructure including a next-generation network, virtualizable cloud resources and XR technological enablers. 6G-XR will support impactful contribution to standards, demonstrate the technological feasibility of key societal requirements and objectives such as interoperability, and costs and energy reduction”, explain the researchers.

Find out more about the project here