5G project MiWaveS targeting millimeter-wave backhaul for small cells

Vendors Nokia (NYSE:NOK) and Intel as well as operators Orange and Telecom Italia are some of the backers behind MiWaveS, a collaborative project launched in Europe to develop millimeter-wave radio technologies for use in ultra-fast 5G radio networks.

Members of MiWaveS--which stands for millimeter-wave small call access and backhauling--believe deployment of small cells with millimeter-wave access in dense urban areas will improve flexibility of the access infrastructure as well as improve spectral and energy efficiency for low-power access points.

Millimeter-wave frequency bands at 60 GHz and 71-86 GHz are expected to enable data speeds of up to 10 Gbps for backhaul and 5 Gbps for mobile access by end users, said Laurent Dussopt, MiWaveS project manager and research engineer with Leti, an institute of French research-and-technology organization CEA. Leti is also a backer of the MiWaveS effort.

A total of 15 telecom operators, vendors, research centers and academic institutions are part of MiWaveS. Though Leti is just now publicly touting the consortium's efforts, the MiWaveS project was actually launched at the beginning of January 2014. It is slated to last three years.

Other MiWaveS consortium members include National Instruments Dresden, STMicroelectronics, Sivers IMA of Sweden, Optiprint of Czechoslovakia, VTT of Finland, Dresden University of Technology in Germany, Spain's Tecnologias Servicios Telematicos y Systemas, the University of Rennes 1 in France and the University of Surrey in the UK.

MiWaveS participated to the first Brooklyn 5G Summit held by NYU Wireless during April 2014 in Brooklyn, N.Y. The summit brought together research and development leaders in academia, business and government to explore the future of 5G wireless technology. Under the direction of Ted Rappaport, NYU Wireless' founder and director, NYU Wireless has conducted pioneering research on millimeter-wave spectrum.

Nokia and other industry players are working with NYU Wireless to help the overall wireless industry pool data on millimeter-wave spectrum. Just prior to the Brooklyn 5G Summit, Lauri Oksanen, vice president of research and technology for what at the time was still known as Nokia Solutions and Networks, told FierceWirelessTech: "There's broad agreement, which we definitely share, that at some point the industry will need more spectrum for capacity and peak-bit-rate reasons. Millimeter wave is kind of a last frontier for spectrum and could be possibly used for access."

MiWaveS is partially funded by the European Commission's Seventh Framework Program (FP7) within the Work Program for Information and Communication Technologies. Numerous 5G projects are being funded by European authorities through a variety of programs.

For more:
- see this CEA-Leti release

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