The SaT5G project – Satellite and Terrestrial Network for 5G – and so i2CAT as one of the project’s partners, are actively participating with several successful demonstrations of 5G over satellite at the 2019 European Conference on Networks and Communications (EuCNC 2019) in Valencia, Spain.
EuCNC 2019 is the 28th edition of a successful series of conferences in the field of telecommunications, sponsored by the IEEE Communications Society and the European Association for Signal Processing, and supported by the European Commission. This is one of the most prominent communications and networking conferences in Europe, which efficiently brings together cutting-edge research and world-renown industries and businesses. The conference focuses on various aspects of 5G communications systems and networks. Researchers from all over the world are called to present their latest research results and, in this sense, Sat5G has prepared several live demonstrations to showcase the results and latest developments of the project applied to different vertical sectors and use cases.
Our demostrations at EuCnC 2019
Over-the-air MEC-based layered video streaming over a 5G multilink satellite and terrestrial network
The demonstration showcases a network which integrates 5G over parallel satellite and terrestrial delivery paths to provide enhanced Quality of Experience (QoE) for users consuming 4K video content. The innovative demonstration highlights how a Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC) proxy can incorporate bit-rate adaptation, link selection and enhance layered video streams for future satellite and terrestrial integrated networks. The demonstration is undertaken in partnership with Avanti’s high-throughput HYLAS 4 GEO satellite capacity, University of Surrey’s 5G Innovation Centre testbed network and VT iDirect’s 5G-enabled satellite hub platform and satellite terminals.
Over-the-air multicast over satellite video for caching and live content delivery
The demonstration showcases over-the-air satellite multicast technology for the delivery of live channels using a MEC platform for Content Delivery Network (CDN) integration with efficient edge content delivery. The demonstration highlights the benefits, in terms of bandwidth efficiency and delivery cost, of using a satellite-enabled link for provisioning live content in a 5G system. The demonstration is undertaken in partnership with Avanti’s high-throughput HYLAS 4 GEO satellite capacity, Broadpeak’s CDN, University of Surrey’s 5G Innovation Centre testbed network and VT iDirect’s 5G-enabled satellite hub platform and satellite terminals.
Video demonstration for delivery of 5G connectivity services to airline passengers
The demonstration showcases 5G technology aboard aircraft, leveraging virtualized services for content distribution. An integrated approach for the delivery of 5G connectivity services based on a Medium Earth Orbit (MEO) satcom solution will be introduced. The innovation targets the next-generation inflight entertainment services to passengers and connectivity solutions for airplanes with a combined satellite and terrestrial 5G network. The demonstration is undertaken in partnership with Zodiac Inflight Innovations’ virtualised A320 airplane cabin mock-up and connectivity infrastructure, Broadpeak’s content delivery platform, Gilat Satellite Networks’ Taurus VSAT unit and virtualised satellite hub, i2CAT’s terrestrial satellite resource coordinator (TALENT), Quortus’ mobile network core, and SES’s low-latency high-throughput O3b MEO satellite constellation.
Demonstration of local (MEC) content caching in 5G with hybrid backhaul network
Using a satellite emulator testbed, TNO demonstrates local access using an established satellite and terrestrial backhaul link with User Plane Function (UPF) located at a MEC node for content delivery. The UPF in the MEC node is used to handle requests for the local content with the ability to optimally select between satellite or terrestrial links depending on available capacity, network policy, link performance and the type of end-user profile. The innovation lies with the ability to set up connections for downloading content with the DASH Enabled Network Element (DANE) collocated with UPF, which can now handle both satellite and terrestrial links simultaneously.
Video demonstration of 5G New Radio (NR) over satellite networks
The University of Oulu demonstration jointly defined with Thales Alenia Space shows that with some modifications, it is possible to apply 5G NR over satellite links for future satellite systems. As listed in 3GPP TR 38.811, the key issues that need addressing include higher latency and increased Doppler shift. The demo concentrates on the uplink random access process.
Demonstration of Hybrid 5G Backhauling to extend services for rural markets and large-gathering events
The Ekinops demonstration showcases how a standard 5G User Equipment (UE) leverages a hybrid backhaul and validates the performance required by 5G services, including packet loss mitigation and remediation. The solution provides tangible measurements of very high QoE achieved by combining satellite-terrestrial links bandwidths for fast upload and download traffic and the terrestrial link low latency for interactive traffic. The demonstrated 5G-hybrid backhaul relies on state-of-the-art multipath protocols and shows satellite as a viable backhaul link for 5G service.
Please visit the SaT5G website link for a detail description of the demonstrations.
The project vision is to develop a cost-effective plug-and-play satcom solution for 5G to enable mobile operators and network vendors to accelerate 5G deployment across all geographies and multiple use cases whilst at the same time creating new and growing market opportunities for satcom industry stakeholders.
“SaT5G is a bold project and our goal is to ensure that with the roll-out of 5G networks, the gap between the unconnected and connected world does not further widen. For mobile operators, these underserved markets are seen as key to accessing the last remaining 1.6 billion subscribers and satcoms are well positioned to play a major role here”, INdran Sivarajah, Project Director of SaT5G said about the initiative. He also stated that “We want to build an attractive plug-and-play satcom solution with 5G for telcos and network vendors to accelerate 5G deployment and at the same time creating new and growing market opportunities for the satcom industry”.
With regard to the technical scope and goals, Mike Fitch explained that “SaT5G is about integrating satellite links with heavy emphasis on standardisation to allow trusted operation and to facilitate industry adoption”. The focus, according to the Technical Manager of SaT5G “is on eMBB to fixed and mobile networks, including support for orchestration and slicing, with the satellite links providing backhaul connectivity either alone or in parallel (multilink) connectivity with terrestrial links. Innovations from the project include satellite modem VNFs, business process modelling including brokers, and improved multicast and multilink algorithms for use with satellite”.
The SaT5G consortium consists of 16 partners: Avanti Communications (Project Coordinator), Thales Alenia Space France, University of Surrey, SES, Airbus Defence and Space, Ekinops SA, TNO (Nederlandse Organisatie Voor Toegepast Natuurwetenschappelijk Onderzoek), British Telecommunications plc, Zodiac Inflight Innovations, Broadpeak, Gilat Satellite Networks, VT iDirect, imec, i2CAT Foundation, University of Oulu, and Quortus. The SaT5G project received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No. 761413.
More information about the project here