Establishing the First European Research WiMAX Testbeds by fdh56iuoui


									lack a comprehensive security solution        works, and intrusion detection and
combining proactive and reactive              mitigation mechanisms that exploit
mechanisms.                                   cross-layer monitoring.                  Link:
To address the above, EU-MESH's             The system will be assessed through
objectives are to develop:                  local experiments and metropolitan-        Please contact:
• algorithms that combine channel           scale trials, from the perspective of a    Vasilios Siris, FORTH-ICS, Greece
  access with power and channel con-        pure wireless network operator and a       Tel: +30 2810 391726
  trol to reduce interference               wired/wireless telecom provider.           E-mail:
• QoS and opportunistic routing algo-
  rithms to support scalable end-to-end     The nine European organizations par-       Ioannis G. Askoxylakis
  QoS and efficient resource usage          ticipating in the EU-MESH project are:     FORTH-ICS, Greece
• location-aware automated (re-)con-        FORTH-ICS (Coordinator, Greece),           Tel: +30 2810 391723
  figuration procedures that adapt to       National Research Council - CNR            E-mail:
  varying network conditions to pro-        (Italy), Technical University of Berlin
  vide robust connectivity                  (Germany), University of Applied Sci-      Marco Conti, CNR, Italy
• lightweight application layer proce-      ence of Ticino - SUPSI (Switzerland),      Tel: +39 0503153062
  dures for seamless mobility over het-     Budapest University of Technology and      E-mail:
  erogeneous and multi-operator mesh        Economics - BME (Hungary), Prox-
  networks, and                             imetry (Poland), Forthnet (Greece),        Raffaele Bruno, CNR, Italy
• secure routing, communications and        Thales Communications (France), and        Tel: +39 050 315 3078
  handover in multi-operator mesh net-      Ozone (France).                            E-mail:

Establishing the First European
Research WiMAX Testbeds
by Kostas Pentikousis, Marilia Curado, Pedro Miguel Neves and Marcos Katz

The WEIRD (WiMAX Extension to Isolated Research Data Networks) project is unique in the
European R&D scene: by the end of May 2008, WEIRD will deliver not one but four WiMAX testbeds,
all interconnected via GEANT2, the pan-European research and education network. By combining
theoretical methods with empirical research and prototype development, the project identifies and
addresses the needs arising from a variety of scenarios, ranging from environmental monitoring to
telemedicine. WiMAX has been much touted (and criticized) during the last years. The WEIRD
testbeds are instrumental in separating hype from reality.

In recent years, increasing attention has   ing on specifics from vendor-provided      WiMAX vendors, the WiMAX Net-
been paid to the IEEE 802.16 family of      data.                                      work Reference Model (NRM) is used
wireless local and metropolitan area net-                                              as a foundation, and the Next Steps in
work (LAN/MAN) standards and its            The primary goal of WEIRD is to estab-     Signalling (NSIS) framework is used
potential to change the field of telecom-   lish four cutting-edge research WiMAX      for Quality of Service reservations.
munications operations and business         testbeds (see Figure 1), which employ      Applications employing the Session
models. Along with the WiMAX Forum          both IEEE 802.16d (Portugal and            Initiation Protocol (SIP) enjoy addi-
extensions that define an end-to-end        Romania) and 802.16e (Italy and Fin-       tional services from the WEIRD sys-
architecture, this wireless LAN/MAN         land) and interconnect them via            tem. Legacy applications are supported,
technology emerges as a potent proposal     GEANT2. In addition to the use of          and the IEEE 802.21 Media Indepen-
for building next-generation wireless       WiMAX as a backhaul and wireless           dent Handover standard has also been
networks. According to some projec-         local loop solution, the project consid-   considered and integrated into the
tions, 1.3 billion people could have        ers three specific deployment scenarios:   WEIRD architecture. This allows
access to WiMAX networks by 2012.           volcano monitoring, telemedicine and       multi-access nodes to take advantage of
Despite the buzz however, there is very     fire prevention.                           the WEIRD architecture and optimize
little data on what can actually be done                                               seamless handovers between WiMAX
with WiMAX, in practice, today. In fact,    Moreover, WEIRD proposes an archi-         (and other) access networks. Further-
the current WiMAX-related literature is     tecture that is compliant with recent      more, in order to allow for independ-
based primarily on analysis and simula-     work by the relevant standardization       ence from the particulars of WiMAX
tion, making use of the general proper-     bodies, such as IEEE 802.16, IETF          vendor equipment, an abstraction layer
ties of systems employing Orthogonal        16ng and the WiMAX Forum. For              has been defined that separates the
Frequency Division Multiple Access          example, in order to guarantee full        lower-layer specific functionalities
(OFDMA), and for the most part draw-        interoperability   among     different     from the upper-layer ones. In order to

ERCIM NEWS 73 April 2008                                                                                                         51
     R&D and Technology Transfer

                                                                                                       scheduling and admission control mech-
                                                                            Oulu (FI)                  anisms have been defined and are being
                                                                                                       implemented for this package.

                                                                                                       Despite the significant interest in
                                                                                                       WiMAX technology and developments,
                                                                                                       WiMAX equipment is yet to become
                                                                                                       readily available at affordable prices.
        Coimbra/Aveiro (PT)                                                                            Until recently, only a handful of studies
                                                                                                       publicly reported results from testbeds or
                                                                                                       field trials. WEIRD also addresses this
                                                                               Bucarest (RO)           lack of data about WiMAX by publishing
                                                                                                       measurement studies in peer-reviewed
                                                                                                       articles. For example, measurements
                                          Ivrea (IT)                                                   relating to the performance of aggregated
                                                                                                       and non-aggregated VoIP over a fixed
                                                                                                       WiMAX testbed, as well as IPTV
                                                                                                       streaming have been recently published.

                                                                                                       We expect that WEIRD-developed
                                                                                                       solutions will have a strong impact on
     Figure 1: The four WiMAX testbeds.                                                                European user communities. For exam-
                                                                                                       ple, the Portuguese Civil Protection
                                                                                                       agency plans to employ WiMAX and
     demonstrate the feasibility of the pro-           work carried out in this project was the        the fire prevention application devel-
     posed solution the project has also               use of Radio-over-Fibre (RoF) in                oped in the project for video surveil-
     developed a joint prototype, which is             WiMAX systems, a very promising and             lance and environmental monitoring in
     deployed on all four testbeds.                    cost-effective solution to interconnect         the mountainous regions in central Por-
                                                       antennae and base stations.                     tugal during the upcoming 2008 fire
     Although clearly a testbed-oriented                                                               season (see Figure 2).
     project, to some extent WEIRD also                WEIRD is also active in two important
     addresses fundamental research issues             standardization bodies, the IETF and the        WEIRD is a European 'Integrated Pro-
     at the physical layer. For example, the           WiMAX Forum. A team from WEIRD                  ject' funded by the 6th Framework IST
     impact of novel WiMAX scenarios at                developed proposed extensions to the            programme.
     the physical layer was investigated, par-         IETF NSIS Working Group, specifying
     ticularly by modelling and evaluating             the Media Independent Handover-Net-             Link:
     the operation of WiMAX-based links in             work Layer Signalling Protocol (MIH-  
     difficult mountainous environments.               NSLP) to transport IEEE 802.21 mes-
     Several multi-antenna techniques were             sages. In parallel, WEIRD also made a           Please contact:
     proposed in order to guarantee high per-          performance evaluation of the first             Enrico Angori
     formance even under the most stringent            internal release of the WiMAX Forum             ElsagDatamat, Italy
     conditions. Another pioneering piece of           simulation software package; new                E-mail:

                                                           Figure 2: Fire prevention application developed in the
                                                           project for video surveillance and environmental moni-
                                                           toring in the mountainous regions in central Portugal.

52                                                                                                                          ERCIM NEWS 73 April 2008

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