Radio Communication Studies
For a number of years the radio systems research group (formerly at UMIST) has been involved in radio channel measurements in the HF to mm frequency bands. To support this research a number of wideband channel sounders using state of the art digital and RF circuits have been designed and implemented. Wideband channel models which relate the channel measurements obtained with the sounder to the environment are developed taking into account aspects such as frequency, bandwidth, location, antenna height, angle of arrival, angle of departure, and time variations of the channel.
Mobile radio channel measurements have been performed with various bandwidths up to 300 MHz in the UHF band with different architectures including multiple antenna measurements and simultaneous multiple frequency band measurements such as the Frequency Division Duplex (FDD) measurements for 3G mobile radio systems, and in the higher frequency bands at 2.45 GHz, 3.5 GHz, 5.2 GHz and 5.8 GHz bands. The multiple receive architecture of the sounder enables active measurements to be obtained in both indoor and outdoor environments which include simultaneous multiple frequency measurements for single input single output (SISO), single input multiple output (SIMO) and multiple input multiple output (MIMO) applications. The Centre has also developed a simulator for Metropolitan area networks IEEE 802.16-d standard which uses the sounder's channel measurements. Passive measurements to monitor the usage of the spectrum have been modeled for more efficient use of the white space in the spectrum. The overall goal of this research has been to develop a better understanding of mobile radio propagation and to produce channel information which could help with the design and evaluation of reliable and spectrally efficient radio communication systems. The latest research projects investigate relay networks spectrum occupancy with distributed sensing, and the 60 GHz converters enable the characterization of the mm band with bandwidths from 1-6 GHz for high speed networks and for on body networks. Car to car communications, in building monitoring of the usage of energy, and radio imaging for through the wall detection and for ground penetrating radar are the subject of current research.
Funding and Collaborative Research
The centre has been funded by EPSRC, HMGCC, Radiocommunications Agency (now Ofcom), BT, RAL, AEGIS, the BBC, HEFCE, Fujitsu, Cable and Wireless, and the DTI.
Collaborators include: Birmingham University Queen Mary University of London, University of Strathclyde, Leeds University, Edinburgh University, Heriot Watt, Leicester University, RAL, Aegis, NPL, LA Techniques Ltd, University of Rennes 1-France, The Communications Research Centre, CRC Canada, and Fraunhofer, IZM, Berlin.