Demonstration of satellite terrestrial integration in 5G at a high visibility 5G focused event

Background and challenge

Due to the long period while satellite communications evolved rather separate from the terrestrial mobile industry, advances in satellite technology and what it can offer to 5G also in a seamless and integrated fashion are still not known sufficiently widely.

Highly visible events such as the Mobile World Congress offer an excellent opportunity to create awareness about the capabilities that satellites can bring to the 5G ecosystem and showcasing and demonstrating integrated satellite terrestrial 5G solutions and the operation of 5G New Radio (NR) live over satellite connections both to the satellite and the cellular (terrestrial) industry.

From a timing perspective, the Mobile World Congress in 2020 seems particularly attractive, as it takes place soon after the finalization of 3GPP Rel-16, which includes a study item on non-terrestrial networks. (We note that the Mobile World Congress 2021 represents also an interesting opportunity, when a potential 3GPP work item on satellites could be already finished.)

The proposed activity shall implement a compelling demonstration of capabilities that satellite can bring to emerging 5G services. The activity shall demonstrate this at a highly visible 5G focused event, such as the Mobile World Congress or similar. Proposers are expected to come forward with an idea relying on a compelling existing prototype, testbed or solution. The proposal shall already outline the technical advancement and position the scope of the solution to be demonstrated, motivating the demonstration. Proposers should also motivate their choice of the event to demonstrate at.

In case of highly expensive events, such as the Mobile World Congress, where booth space itself is very costly, extensive hardware setups for demonstrations requiring additional space can become prohibitively expensive considering the available budget. Therefore demonstration of terrestrial satellite integration using software simulation and Proof-of-concept (PoC) software implementation, or a very basic hardware setup are also welcome.

Arranging and ensuring live satellite connection might also be prohibitively complex and expensive, or simply just impossible due to local constraints. Therefore, in case proposers are targeting a live, over the air demonstration, proposers should also consider and give a clear indication on the logistics and local arrangements, existing pre-agreements with local organisers/hosts concerning the set-up of the needed infrastructure (satellite antenna dish, etc.), as well as a description how satellite capacity will be ensured.

Objective and work to be performed

This sub activity should elaborate and plan a demonstration at a high visibility 5G focused event, perform and document the demonstration, also drawing conclusions and advising others planning demonstrations in the future concerning specific aspects that attention should be paid to.

Proposers are required to elaborate what novel aspects are to be demonstrated in comparison to recent demonstrations (e.g. the ESA SATis5 demonstration at MWC 2019). The expectation is that the demonstration goes beyond simply backhaul over satellite.

Deliverables and outputs

  • A detailed technical description of the demonstration to be performed, including plans for the logistics at such a highly visible event.
  • Demonstrating at the event, and documenting the demonstration and assessing the impact through a report.

Duration and schedule (mid term milestone and review, if applicable)

Duration of the activity might vary, depending on the actual date of the event targeted and the complexity of the run up time and planning of logistics, etc.

Maximum budget available for the activity

Proposers are expected to deliver a detailed cost analysis justifying the funding requested. The maximum budget for such a demonstration depends on the event profile. In case of a very high profile event, such as the Mobile World Congress, where the cost of a presence itself is already very high, a budget between 40000 and 60000 might be justified. In other cases a 5000 to 10000 euro budget is considered to be appropriate.

In case proposers are targeting a live, over the air demonstration, proposers should also consider the cost of the needed satellite capacity or provide proof of the availability of such capacity.

References and relevant related activities

The use of existing testbeds for such demonstrations should be considered, also including any associated cost.


Proposal Submission

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