Weekly Seminar: “The ICT EMPhAtiC project: main research and demonstration results”

09/03/2016 - 09/03/2016



The goal of the EMPhAtiC project was to develop, evaluate and demonstrate the capability of enhanced multicarrier techniques to make better use of the existing radio frequency bands in providing broadband data services in coexistence with narrowband legacy services. The project addressed the Professional Mobile Radio (PMR) application, and in particular the evolution of the Public Protection & Disaster Relief (PPDR) service currently using TETRA or other legacy systems for voice and low-speed data services. Our main emphasis was on filterbank based multicarrier (FB-MC) waveforms for utilizing effectively the available fragmented spectrum in such heterogeneous environments. The core idea was to develop a multi-mode radio platform, based on variable filter-bank processing, which is able to perform modulation/detection functions simultaneously for different signal formats with adjustable centre frequencies, bandwidths and subchannel spacings. Enhanced OFDM solutions were also considered as alternatives aiming at minimal modifications to the 3GPP LTE standard, which served as the reference system in the studies. In addition to physical layer functionalities, the project also developed MIMO and MAC-layer techniques, as well as relay networking solutions which are compatible and maximize the benefits of the waveform level solutions. A demonstrator was built that illustrated the EMPhAtiC concept in a realistic scenario with commercial TETRAPOL units.



Xavier Mestre received the MS and PhD in Electrical Engineering from the Technical University of Catalonia (UPC) in 1997 and 2002 respectively and the Licenciate Degree in Mathematics in 2011. During the pursuit of his PhD, he was recipient of a 1998-2001 PhD scholarship (granted by the Catalan Government) and was awarded the 2002 Rosina Ribalta second prize for the best doctoral thesis project within areas of Information Technologies and Communications by the Epson Iberica foundation.  From January 1998 to December 2002, he was with UPC’s Communications Signal Processing Group, where he worked as a Research Assistant and has participated actively in the European-funded projects ACTS TSUNAMI-II, ACTS SUNBEAM, IST METRA, MEDEA+ UNILAN and IST-IMETRA. In January 2003 he joined the Telecommunications Technological Center of Catalonia (CTTC), where he currently holds a position as a Senior Research Associate in the area of Radio Communications. During this time, he has actively participated in the European projects MEDEA+ MARQUIS and IST COOPCOM, the networks of excellence IST NEWCOM and IST ACE, together with several contracts with the European Space Agency and the local industry. Since 2012, he is coordinator of the ICT EMPhAtiC project. He is IEEE Senior member and head of the Advanced Signal and Information Processing Department at CTTC. He has advised 2 PhD theses on the areas of signal processing for communications. He has been associate editor of the IEEE Transactions on Signal Processing (2008-11) and associate co-editor of the special issue on Cooperative Communications in Wireless Networks at the EURASIP Journal on Wireless Communications and Networking.

David Gregoratti (Italy, 1980) received his M.Sc. degree in telecommunications engineering from “Politecnico di Torino”, Italy, in 2005, and his Ph.D. degree in signal theory and communications from “Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya” (UPC), Barcelona, Spain, in 2010. From 2006 to 2010 he was part of the Ph.D.program of the “Centre Tecnològic de Telecomunicacions de Catalunya” (CTTC) and recipient of a FI Ph.D. scholarship granted by the Catalan Government. During his academic career, D.G. visited “Institut Eurecom” and “Université de Nice Sophia Antipolis” (Sophia Antipolis, France, in 2003-2004), “Qualcomm Inc.” (San Diego, CA, USA, in 2004), “TelecomItalia LAB” (Torino, Italy, in 2005) and “Télécom ParisTech” (Paris, France, in 2009). His research interests include wireless cooperative systems, smart grids, random matrix theory and free probability theory applications to large system analysis, distributed signal processing.

Nikolaos Bartzoudis (Alexandroupoli, Greece 1976) is a Senior Researcher and head of the PHYCOM department at CTTC. Nikolaos obtained his B.Sc. in Electronic Engineering at the Technical Educational Institute of Thessaloniki (Greece, 2000). He then pursued postgraduate studies and received his M.Sc. degree (in Digital Communication Systems) and Ph.D. degree (in dependable embedded systems) from Loughborough University (UK, 2001 and 2006 respectively). Before joining CTTC (January 2008), Nikolaos has worked 2 years as Research Assistant (Loughborough University , UK, 2001-2003) implementing reconfigurable hardware solutions for Active Networks and as a Senior Research Officer (University of Essex , UK, 2005-2008) implementing a flexible low-cost sensor-processing node with built-in self-testing utilities. At CTTC Nikolaos was promoted twice, from Senior Research Engineer to Research Associate (10/2008) and then to Senior Researcher (04/2013). Nikolaos has been/is principal investigator and project manager in 3 funded R&D projects (AEThER, BeMImoMAX, GEDOMIS-ADCOMM). He has also participated in more than 10 other R&D projects funded by public authorities (EC, Spanish government and EPSRC) or the industry. Nikolaos has supervised M.Sc. and Ph.D. students, served as mentor in the Google Summer of Code 2015, gave invited lectures, participated in industrial panels and coordinated live demonstrations of prototypes in various events. Nikolaos also possesses hands-on knowledge of the entire technology transfer cycle. His research interest and actual duties as technical team leader at CTTC include the development and experimental validation of spectral and energy efficient 4G and 5G wireless communication technologies such as OFDM (LTE, WiMAX, WiFi), FBMC, MIMO, multiple radio interface co-existence, spectrum sharing, cognitive & reconfigurable radio. Nikolaos has long experience in real-time baseband prototyping

J. Oriol Font Bach (Terrassa, 1981) received his M.Sc. degree in Computer Engineering from Universitat Autònoma de Barcelona (UAB) in 2004 and the Ph.D. at the Department of Signal Theory and Communications (TSC) of the Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya (UPC) in 2013. As part of his initial post-graduate studies he also obtained a Master in Design of Intregrated Circuits from UAB in 2006. In November 2006 he joined the CTTC, where he currently holds a researcher position, as part of the PHYCOM department. His main work revolves around optimized digital design techniques, hardware-software co-design and real-time implementation and prototyping of advanced baseband Digital Signal Processing (DSP) algorithms and systems for modern and future wireless communications technologies. The focus of his experimental research is specifically laid on the efficient FPGA or SoC-based realization of advanced PHY-layer solutions for broadband multi-carrier and multi-antenna systems (including its posterior realistic validation using the the GEDOMIS testbed). His main research interest areas include digital design of baseband DSP processing engines for broadband wireless communication systems, optimized hardware/software co-design techniques, real-time implementation of bit-intensive PHY-layer solutions including run-time adaptivity (e.g., closed-loop MIMO-OFDM(A), interference-aware LTE femtocells or filter-bank multi-carrier systems), real-world wireless communication-system prototyping accounting for mobile channels and hardware limitations, design automation and efficient IP reuse.

CTTC Auditorium / 10.00