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Project description

Never technology has penetrated so deeply and fast in society everyday life as Internet has done in the last decades and is expected to do in the future. The enormous flux of data transferred via wireless networks, increasing at exponential pace, makes today’s state-of-the-art networks quickly outdated. Further, large parts of our society are deprived of adequate access to the Internet due to high costs of installation of optical fibres and the inadequate performance of wireless networks. This inequality is most likely to continue for some time to come.

These challenges in terms of bandwidth, coverage, capacity, and distribution of data rate can only be faced by the exploitation of unused portions of the spectrum at higher frequencies and by relevant advance in technology. In particular, millimetre waves are the only solution to support the increasing data request and to be a credible, cost-effective fibre complement for both mobile and fixed final individual users.

However, millimetre wave frequencies require a novel paradigm for everywhere wireless communication due to the high atmospheric attenuation and the lack of devices able to provide power at similar levels as compared to the microwave range.

The objective of the TWEETHER project is to set a milestone in the millimetre wave technology with the realization of the first W-band (92-95GHz) wireless system for distribution of high capacity everywhere.  Such a system, combined with the development of beyond state-of-the-art affordable millimetre wave devices, will permit to overcome the economical obstacle that causes the digital divide and will pave the way towards the full deployment of small cells.

Project objectives

  • Objective 1: Define the future wireless network architecture for small cell backhaul and access applications, leveraging the W-band spectrum and the point to multipoint principle to enable an energy and spectrum efficient and high performing network.
  • Objective 2: Develop the millimetre wave technology with unique performances for boosting wide adoption of W-band systems.
  • Objective 3: Integrate the developed technology into the RF front end modules to achieve cost effective and compact network nodes.
  • Objective 4: Validate the enhanced capabilities provided by the TWEETHER system by means of a small scale field trial, which will be a vehicle towards the exploitation of the developed technology.