ICT-19-2019 InfoDay: Presentation of 5GENESIS project

On 14 September 2018, I had the privilege to present the 5GENESIS project at the ICT-19-2019 InfoDay in Brussels (link). The next big challenge for the 5G PPP community is to respond to the H2020 ICT-19 call for Advanced 5G validation trials across multiple vertical industries by 14th November  2018.

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To facilitate learning about the ICT-19 call, and the expected working relationships with the new  ICT-17 projects, an information event is organised on 14th September 2018.  This 5G PPP ICT-19 Info day  is hosted by the European Commission in Brussels (Albert Borschette Conference Center).

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The recorded webcast session of the event is available here (Not functional in Firefox).

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5GENESIS: The Genesis of a flexible 5G Facility

In CAMAD 2018, I presented the paper entitled “5GENESIS: The Genesis of a flexible 5G Facility” (PDF), which describes the pathway towards the realisation of a 5G Facility that will allow the validation of the major 5G Key Performance Indicators (KPIs). It reflects the approach that the 5GENESIS consortium will adopt in this direction. More precisely, it describes the key design principles of such Facility as well as the targeted use cases for the KPIs validation. The adopted approach for the Facility realisation includes the design of a common implementation blueprint that will be instantiated in five Platforms distributed across Europe. To maximise the diversity and the efficiency of the Facility, complementary performance objectives have been selected for the Platforms, while specific characteristics from different vertical industries have been allocated to each of them.

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he five platforms of the 5GENESIS Facility (Figure 1) and their main features are as follows:

  • The Athens Platform provides a shared radio infrastructure (gNBs and small cells) with different ranges and overlapping coverage that is supported by an SDN/NFV enabled core and enabled edge-computing capabilities. It is conceived to showcase scenarios where multimedia content delivery and low latency applications coexist in large public-events.
  • The Málaga Platform brings automated orchestration and management of different network slices over multiple domains, on top of the 5G New Radio (NR) access and fully virtualised core network to showcase Mission Critical Services (MCS) running in an Edge Computing platform and outdoor deployments.
  • The Limassol Platform offers radio interfaces of different characteristics and capabilities, combining terrestrial and satellite communications, integrated to showcase service continuity and ubiquitous access in underserved areas together with interoperability of IoT components deployed within these areas.
  • The Surrey Platform features multiple radio access technologies that can support massive Machine Type Communications (mMTC), including 5G NR and NB-IoT, combined under a flexible Radio Resource Management (RRM) and spectrum sharing platform to showcase massive IoT services.
  • The Berlin Platform contains ultra-dense areas covered by various network deployments, ranging from indoor nodes to nomadic outdoor clusters, coordinated via advanced backhauling technologies to showcase immersive service provisioning.

In alignment with the 5G-PPP targets for the experimentation phase of 5G, the 5GENESIS Facility will mainly be used to validate the following performance indicators:

a)    Service level Performance Indicators

Data rates. Athens, Limassol, Berlin and Málaga platforms will demonstrate high data rates for eMBB. For example, Málaga will demonstrate the concurrent use of 10 to 20 cameras with real time high quality video in a small area (300m x 300m), with several configurations combining LTE, 5G NR and Optical fibre to balance the traffic distribution.

Reliability and latency. Málaga Platform will demonstrate Mission Critical Services (MCPTT, MCVideo and MCData, based on 3GPP R14) in both lab and outdoor deployments. Although the current KPIs defined by 3GPP in release 13 are not so strict to URLLC applications (e.g. tele-surgery), the same deployments will be used to demonstrate latency <10ms, reliability >99% and availability >99%. Experiments conducted indoor in laboratories could demonstrate even more ambitious performance KPIs.

b)    Application level Performance Indicators

The 5GENESIS Facility will be instrumental in also assessing the overall service improvement, by measuring application-level indicators, such as: i) the user-perceived quality of experience (QoE), ii) the impact to the E2E security guarantees.

Quality of Experience. The QoE assessment will be studied in the Athens, Málaga and Berlin Platforms, where Human Type Communications (HTC) are foreseen. The validation concept will involve real end-users in the assessment process combined with objective QoE estimation methods [9]. The Berlin Platform will evaluate the provided network quality over a heterogeneous set of backhauling nodes, using mmWave and optical fibre links. The Málaga Platform will evaluate QoE with the Police Department in the context of Mission Critical Services.

Security. Regarding the security-related assessment, the Athens platform will be responsible for examining the security in a dense urban environment for demanding video services. The goal here is to provide a content delivery framework by taking advantage of the SDN/NFV technologies without affecting security or violating privacy.

c) Network Level Performance Indicators

Coverage. The Limassol platform will demonstrate ubiquitous 5G coverage, with scenarios oriented to maritime communications, rural and underserved areas. The platform will combine satellite communications links with terrestrial backhaul and access technologies, employing advanced link aggregation and optimisation technologies, integrating them all in the overall 5G network.

Density. The Surrey platform will support mMTC in a network of densely distributed NB-IoT and LoRa nodes. In the demonstration event, the platform will be stressed to achieve 1000X simultaneously connected devices, starting with ~1000 real nodes and pushing the system to the limits with additional set of simulated ones.

Network lifecycle management. Performance metrics such as the slice establishment time, the VNF relocation and instantiation times, and the computational resource usage of the cloudified protocol stack, will also be considered. Such metrics will be quantified in the Surrey and Málaga platforms. In this regard, the goal is to exemplify in an E2E fashion the trade-off between the flexibility required in the 5G networking and the constraints and limitations of the virtualization and ETSI MANO frameworks to be used. These measurements will also provide a way to understand the type and benefits of self-adaptable mechanisms that can be put in place to minimise the gap between the flexibility and constraints provided by virtualisation.

Performance Testing of Mobile Chatbot Applications

In CAMAD 2018, a paper (PDF) that I co-authored introduces a new metric related to the Service Stability of mobile Chatbot Applications. The service stability metric is directly dependent to the following observed issues:

  • Image Loss,
  • Message Repetition,
  • Message Reorder and
  • Auxiliary Keyboard Loss.

Each of these observed issues has a different bias in the calculation formula of service stability. In the following equation the N represents the total number of steps in each scenario and m represents the number of successfully executed steps. The variable Ii is equal to 1 for each step that is observed the corresponding issue and equal to 0 elsewhere.

Each test score is normalized to the maximum score that can be achieved for each chatbot, so the best value for the service stability is 1 and the worst is 0. This metric provides an insight of the QoE that the user experiences under different reception conditions, quantifying the impact of the various impairments to the final service provision.

For the experimental needs of the paper, the proposed metric was validated based on experimental data retrieved by the 5G-TRIANGLE experimental testbed. Therefore, three different types of chatbots over Viber platform used for the execution of the experiment, each one having a different degree of complexity and requirements. The following Table summarizes the features of each chatbot.

Chatbot No. Features
Static Messages Database Communication API-based Communication
Chatbot #1
Chatbot #2
Chatbot #3

For the execution of the experiment it was mandatory to use the commercial application of Viber, via which the user would have access to the chatbot service. For the emulation of cellular network, the TRIANGLE testbed is using the UXM Wireless Test Platform device by Keysight. This device is capable of modifying a number of parameters of the wireless physical layer and thus emulate various network conditions. The parameters that modified in this experiment are:

  • the number of Downlink and Uplink Physical Resource Blocks (PRBS),
  • the number of Downlink and Uplink Subframes,
  • the Multipath Fading Propagation Conditions (EPA, EVA, ETU),
  • the antenna output power,
  • the mode, the type (AWGN) and the power of the environmental noise,
  • the max Doppler shift

Each mobile device was directly connected to the Keysight Source Management Unit instead of the battery and supplied with 5V DV voltage. This set-up was offering a flexible configuration to meet the power sourcing and analysis requirements.

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For the orchestration of the experimental process as well as the configuration of the UXM and SMU devices the TRIANGLE testbed used the Keysight KS8400A Test Automation Platform (TAP). This software was enabling a powerful, flexible and extensible test sequence and test plan creation.

The mobile devices were controlled via the Quomation WebDriver, a test automation framework for use with native, hybrid and mobile web apps. Furthermore, the Quamotion Frontend provided a device monitoring and controlling interface. The mobile devices used in this experiment were the Samsung Galaxy S7 and Samsung Galaxy S4.

 

Participating in the annual review of H2020 SMESEC project

On 5 July 2018 I had the chance to participate in the annual review of H2020 SMESEC project at FORTH in Heraklion, Crete as independent expert of EU. SMESEC aims at providing a unified security framework for Small Medium Enterprises (SME). Since SME’s are one of the most important drivers for innovation, but they often tend not properly to plan their cybersecurity defence, either by underestimating the risks and consequences of cyber attacks or by not being capable of keeping pace with the progress in this ever-evolving field, the main goal of SMESEC is to identify what are the needs from the SME perspective and translate them into requirements for a unified framework, which will eventually consist of the SMESEC partners’ contributed products.

The SEMSEC products can cover a wide range of security market segments, and it is expected that the unification will bring even higher added value to the products and the project framework itself.

It was really an interesting review meeting, which showcased the added value of SMESEC framework. I would like to thank the consortium for the hospitality and the great organization of the meeting.