General Objectives


The project is divided in six main objectives:

Objective 1: Designing a virtualized 5G network for ultra-reliable and low latency requirements: high capacity optical access and Evolved Packet Core.

This objective deals with both the optical access and the Evolved Packet Core (EPC) infrastructures. It comprises the design, development and evaluation of a virtualized solution of a high capacity optical access network (rates in the order of 40 Gbps) and the dynamic provisioning for the Evolved Packet Core (EPC) for the use cases of ultra-reliable and low-latency requirements for emergency scenarios. Also this objective includes the development of cost-aware resource provisioning schemes techniques of the EPC entities based on elastic cloud management policies to cope with dynamic demands, such as that of an emergency scenario. The proposed solution creates a seamless core-access optical network with very high bandwidth and low delay, with dynamic resource management, which will satisfy the internal demands of the coverage area. The optical access network topology can be both multi-point and point-point, configuring dynamically the time (time slots), frequency (optical carriers), code or radio frequency (RoPON).

The management of the network elements is done through virtualization and federation mechanisms. Management of services is based on Service Graphs descriptions that are deployed over NFV (Network Function Virtualization) architectures, with a dynamic matching between services needs and resource availability using resource graphs models that can operate in hierarchical orchestration scenarios.


Objective 2: Designing a virtualized 5G network for massive IoT and broadband experience: Evolved Packet Core and dense deployment of Small Cells.

This objective deals with the infrastructures of both the Evolved Packet Core (EPC) and the Small Cells. The goal is to design and evaluate a virtualized 5G architecture that supports in the emergency scenario i) Massive IoT (MioT) communications, and ii) Broadband Experience Everywhere, Anytime (BEEA) communications.

This objective requires the design of a low cost, flexible and elastic solution for the EPC of 5G based on NFV for BEEA communications. Additionally, it requires to adapt the 5G EPC design to support MioT communications by incorporating specific IoT entities of the 3GPP architecture (e.g. the MTC-IWF) as well as enhancing the design of other entities (e.g. MME, S-GW) to address the massive amount of supported devices and their coordinated outbursts. Moreover, it requires efficient and cost-aware dynamic provisioning schemes for computing resources for the virtualized EPC entities specifically suited for the traffic characteristics of these services.

This objective also comprises the design of a dense Small Cell architecture composed by a layer of tightly packed Wi-Fi Small Cells, controlled by a centralized access controller. The design will include a proposal of Small Cells as a Service (SCaaS) in which an infrastructure provider offers virtualized Small Cells resources to third party operators such as MVNOs. The architecture has to incorporate efficient wireless access mechanisms in terms of spectrum use and energy consumption. These mechanisms must consider joint strategies for user association, access mode selection and data offloading. Furthermore, the architecture will apply and extend an SDN architecture to the wireless Small Cell backhaul to be able to cope with stringent capacity requirements. The proposed architecture will also address the requirements stemming from vehicle to vehicle and vehicle to infrastructure communications.


Objective 3: Design of a high performance and efficient NFV architecture for 5G aware Fog Computing deployments.

This objective deals with adapting the NFV reference architectural framework, as defined by ETSI, to new requirements that the Fog Computing Paradigm for 5G applications exercises over the traditional networking/computing solution. The Fog paradigm implies a very heterogeneous assortment of devices that will range from ARM to x86 based CPUs with variable amounts of RAM and storage, with several communication interfaces (wireless or wired), and with onboard (solar or battery) or external power supplies; for use on MAV, personal equipment or even cars. The solution will take into account these requirements, and will be able to optimally deploy Virtual Network Functions over a wide range of devices like low power Single Board Computers, white boxes or home gateways. As a result, an infrastructure provider has the flexibility to rapidly and securely provide resources on-demand, to the urban areas where they are insufficient, representing a cost-effective alternative for deploying 5G services, by using NFV, SDN and Fog Computing technologies. The solution will be deployed and validated for emergency situations deploying service in dense urban areas by using RPA and MAVs.


Objective 4: Development and validation of a distributed framework that enables the synchronization of the inter- and intra-cells network elements and their associated services.

The aim of this objective is the design and validation of a distributed control framework (DCF) for orchestrating and optimising the NFV-based controller elements (NCE) within the scope of a 5G network. This distributed control plane will integrate proactively self-organizing mechanisms and algorithms in emerging 5G scenarios. For optimizing the performance, network management needs to evolve by exploring advances in automation and cognitive operations, introducing self-organizing functionalities. In the context of 5G there are many challenges related to these capabilities, such that having complete intelligence about the network status, prediction of user behaviour and dynamic SDN/NFV resources allocation.


Objective 5: Development of a Service Marketplace

where parties can automatically expose or consume the different atomic and composite services in an automatic way. This objective will aim at designing and implementing the marketplace enabling customers to explore offers, exploit and manage their services and Network Functions (NFs), allowing third party developers to advertise their resources and SLA commitments, and realizing the trading environment for Service merchandising. This environment will be built and expanded using NFV architecture principles. Transfers between network controllers and/or basic computing and storage elements will be handled by means of secure communications. The marketplace will have a directory service catalogue that will enable registration and location of the service repositories and its components. At the same time a set of algorithms will optimize service composition and geographic location based on quality of service and data source characteristics.


Objective 6: 5GCity Global Testbed.

The objective will consist in the creation of a set of islands, nuclei and their corresponding intercommunication systems. Each island will be comprised of high-capacity optical access networks and hotspots, computing and storage elements handling actuators and sensors that control and monitor citizen services (Cameras, Urban Traffic Regulator, Weather, etc.). The optical access network endpoints will provide connectivity to some wireless base stations and will interconnect the network elements. A multi-hop network is enabled by means of the wireless network. Simultaneously, the dense cells interconnect each other enabling a high capacity fixed network. The test-bed platform will be comprised of an emulator/simulator that will validate the different algorithms, mechanisms and technology combinations proposed in this project.