The objective of the activity is to deliver rapidly small proof of concepts, which are using emerging 5G concepts and technologies for satellite communications. The deliverables of this activity will be hardware prototypes and software demonstrators, which will validate the use of technologies in a satellite context. Targeted Improvements: To ease the integration and coexistence of satellite communications with 5G networks.
The 5G-development plan, as communicated by the 3GPP standardisation forum, has initiated 5G system developments in 2017 supported by massive public RD funding and large private investments by the terrestrial community. As a consequence, these developments are solely focused on terrestrial communications while satellite communications still need to find their role.
In this scenario, it is crucial to have the capability to react quickly to proposed 5G technologies and explore synergies, threats and opportunities vis-à-vis future satellite communications. Rapid assessment of technologies and concepts shall be achieved by initiation of a multitude of small prototyping activities with minimal administrative burden. The activity shall specifically involve very small industrial players/Makerspaces throughout Europe, which are at present focused mainly on terrestrial and consumer oriented telecommunication projects.
Within this activity it is proposed to conduct as a minimum 12 small hardware prototyping activities, focusing on developing new technology concepts for satellite communications in the domain of 5G. The activities will be complementary to on-going ARTES activities in the 5G area (e.g. 3A.075 Demonstrator for satellite-terrestrial integration in the 5G context, and activities pursued under H2020 funding such as Sat 5G – https://5g-ppp.eu/Sat5G/
A prime contractor would be responsible managing separate individual development contracts placed with suitable entities from the Makerspace. The prime contractor shall coordinate and manage the activities of the group, and will oversee the hardware prototyping activities. The initial four prototyping activities will be defined by ESA and requested as part of the Statement of Work.
Tentative proposals for these initial four prototyping activities are a participation in 5G terrestrial prototyping trials with a satellite offer, enhanced multi-RAT coordination and 5G derived access methods. The subsequent prototyping activities will be defined by ESA, in consultation with the prime contractor during the course of the activity. This will allow initiating small prototyping activities in line with developments as taking place in the 5G community.
To implement such rapid prototyping projects, the activity shall target specifically SMEs and industries, which normally do not engage with ESA. The activity shall engage with the community of start-up companies, university spin-offs, very small companies which often implement projects in the spirit of open source hardware and full sharing of intellectual property. Procurement Policy: C(1) = Activity restricted to non-prime contractors (incl. SMEs).
For additional information please go to EMITS news “Industrial Policy measures for non-primes, SMEs and RD entities in ESA programmes” – http://emits.sso.esa.int/emits/owa/emits.main