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Advanced 5G Repetition Combining

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PBCH/MIB Repetitions. Image source: [3].


Cellular standards and networks have traditionally been optimized for the high throughput requirements of modern smartphones. Recently the Internet of Things (IoT) has emerged as a new application with vastly different requirements. Ericsson predicts, that there will be 15 billion smart devices with Internet connectivity. Potential applications include smart metering, tracking in logistics, environmental sensing, and smart buildings. Two new variants of LTE have been standardized to fulfill the 5G requirements for these devices: LTE Cat-M1 (eMTC) and NB-IoT. They both offer reduced cost and power consumption, as well as improved coverage, but Cat-M1 supports more features and has a higher maximum throughput. As part of our communication platform, we are currently developing a modem for the Cat-M1 standard.

Project Description

One of the most challenging parts of designing a Cat-M1 IoT modem is improving the coverage by 20 dB. For the so-called PBCH this is especially difficult, since it has not been changed from legacy LTE. While it is transmitted continuously, the data changes every 40 ms. One idea is combining the information of these repetitions, even though they contain changed data [2].

The current proposal corresponds to a brute-force approach to combining this information. As a first step in your project, you will study ways to reduce the complexity on an algorithmic level. In a second step, you will implement your algorithm as a hardware accelerator, which we will later integrate into our RF SoC.

Status: Available

Looking for 1-2 Semester/Master students
Contact: Stefan Lippuner


An interest in wireless communication and signal processing
Matlab programming experience
VHDL experience (VLSI I lecture)


Qiuting Huang

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Related Projects

RF SoCs for the Internet of Things


[1] 3GPP. Release 13., 2016.

[2] Sierra Wireless. R1-131043: PBCH Correlation Decoder.

[3] All about Wired and Wireless Technology.

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