Azcom Technology is pushing forward cutting-edge innovations by partnering multiple organisations in research and standardization initiatives in relation to 5G, Edge Computing, Smart Roads, Smart Cities and IoT. These initiatives are leveraging our deep experience and expertise in wireless communications and embedded software and systems development.
Azcom has been involved in the definition of a Multi-Service Architecture within the 5G Novel Radio Multiservice adaptive network Architecture project (5G NORMA), developed under the EU Horizon 2020 framework.
5G NORMA aims to develop a novel mobile network architecture that efficiently adapts to fluctuations in traffic demand resulting from heterogeneous and dynamically changing service portfolios and local contexts.
The key idea behind 5G NORMA is to decompose the mobile network functions (including access and core functions) and adaptively allocate them among several levels of infrastructure, ranging from the closest to the antenna (called Edge Clouds) to the most centralized (called Central Cloud), depending on the specific service and its requirements (e.g. bandwidth and latency) and the transport network capabilities (e.g. available front/back-haul capacity).
To showcase the benefits of a flexible, adaptive, intelligent, and service-aware (de)composition of network functions and services, a proof of concept has been built around Azcom eNodeB, modified to be reconfigured by the Software Defined Mobile Network Controller (SDMC) via a proprietary communication protocol developed as part of the project. The proof of concept illustrates communication between the SDMC and the eNodeB.
Connected Cars (V2X)
Azcom contributes to the Connected Car (V2X) use case of the 5G CORAL project, under the EU Horizon 2020 framework.
5G CORAL project (Convergent Virtualised Radio Access Network Living at the Edge) leverages the pervasiveness of edge and fog computing in the Radio Access Network (RAN), to create a unique opportunity for access convergence. This is envisioned by the means of an integrated and virtualised networking and computing solution where virtualised functions, context-aware services, and user and third-party applications are blended together to offer enhanced connectivity and better user experience.
The proposed vRAN solution is built around two major building blocks, an Edge and Fog Computing System (EFS), offering a shared hosting environment for virtualised services and applications, and, an Orchestration and Control System (OCS), responsible for managing and controlling the EFS, including its interworking with other (non-EFS) domains (e.g., transport and core networks, distant clouds).
The use case concentrate on V2X communications supported by Fog Computing Devices on the infrastructure. Azcom has developed the RSU (Road Side Unit), the On Board Unit (OBU) and the software required for the solution. The software enables extreme low latency exchange and processing of data between the RSU and the OBU for enhanced safety of the car as well as its surroundings.
As part of the Torino Smart City project (Torino 5G), Azcom is developing prototype systems for enhanced vehicle and road safety. These intelligent systems aim to protect vulnerable road users by forecasting and, consequently, avoiding dangerous situations, generating an alarm when these occur.
Use cases under analysis in this project have been taken from the 3GPP, e.g. Emergency Vehicle Warning, Emergency Stop, Queue Warning, Road Safety Services, Warning to Pedestrian agains Pedestrian Collision and Vulnerable Road User Safety.
Azcom Technology is involved in the definition of a hybrid communication platform (cellular and direct short range communication) and in the evaluation of possible uses of future ETSI-5G architectural evolutions (e.g. Mobile Edge Computing) for enhanced road safety, traffic fluidity and energy efficiency, as part of the C-Roads project of the European Union.
C-Roads brings together car and commercial vehicle OEMs, road operators and technology partners like Azcom to implement and test, in real traffic conditions, cooperative systems based on V2X technologies. Specifically, C-Roads Italy is focusing on automated driving applications like Truck Platooning, Highway Chauffeur and combined scenarios involving trucks and passenger cars. The development of these applications requires the integration of V2I C-ITS service and V2V information with vehicle control strategies, and the use of low-latency communication systems.
As part of the Home of IoT project, aiming to develop technologies related to the human vital signs monitoring devoted to elder and fragile people, Azcom is designing and developing the 4G communication infrastructure underlying seamless device to device and device to cloud connectivity.
The proposed system architecture comprises heterogeneous collection of intelligent sensors like cameras, gyroscopes, GPS, motion sensors, temperature sensors, pressure sensors, etc. The system monitors the state of people health by detecting early signals relating to physiological critical conditions. Each sensor is flanked by a miniaturized processing unit, on which intelligent algorithms, such as artificial neural networks, are performed to process the signals and obtain a compact description of the main information, such as identity, posture, falls, attention, etc. The signals with the related metadata are then transferred to a local unit and finally to the cloud, e.g. through 4G/5G wireless network.
An additional outcome of the project will be the creation of an open laboratory for IoT, that will represent an aggregation point for the companies/researches ecosystem in order to create the momentum for innovative solutions in the IoT arena.
Intelligent System for Infrastructure Monitoring project envision a dense network of connected smart sensors that, through deep learning algorithms running in the cloud, will monitor the structural status of an host of different buildings and infrastructures in steady state or after events like earthquakes, hurricanes or floods. The system can predict, detect and report early signs of structural risk and, therefore, prevent loss of human life and valuable assets.
Azcom Technology in this project leverages its competences on IoT solutions design, together with the strong experience in the design and development of complex electronic systems in area such as wireless telecommunication (LTE/NB-IoT/5G), Home/Building Automation, Power Line Communications/Smart Grids and real time industrial embedded systems, working on the definition of the most fitting connectivity solutions to achieve energy-efficient and effecting data transfer between physical sensors, data center and analytics.