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Dubliners should not be concerned by men in white coats – top scientists advise

“The Van” takes on new significance as World’s First Trial of Innovative Wireless Communications Systems is held in Dublin, Irish Telecoms Regulator ComReg license

Observant Dubliners may spot a large unmarked white van on their roads next week with antennae on the roof and men in white coats ‘skulking’ around various locations in the Greater Dublin Area. If so, they will be witnessing history in the making as the world’s first trials of advanced new wireless technologies take place in Dublin. The globally unique trials are being conducted by an international team of industry leaders and top researchers led by Ireland’s Centre for Telecommunications Value Chain Research (CTVR).

Ireland’s Commission for Communications Regulation ComReg has granted CTVR and a number of top global firms a special trial license for the research which aims to identify how increasingly scarce space in the world’s radio wavebands can best be used in the interests of society and the economy. The CTVR led research will have worldwide significance and findings will be eagerly awaited by international industry and research interests.

The Dublin trials involve the use of intelligent technologies which can adapt their own operation to maximise performance. Typical applications might include new national communication systems for emergency services or mobile phones which intelligently scan their networks for less crowded frequencies. Apart from these capabilities, the challenges involve the development of new software and the creation of miniature circuitry in the microchips powering electronic devices.

The move co-incides with a gathering of 1,000 of the world’s leading telecommunications industry experts in Dublin in the next two weeks for major conferences to explore the future of wireless communications. Raw data from the trials will be fed directly into the conferences by CTVR.

“ComReg has an innovative wireless test and trial scheme, making Ireland one of the very few places in the world where activity of this kind can take place,” says Prof. Donal O’Mahony, Director of CTVR who are staging the trials. “The trials will showcase cognitive or smart radio, innovative networks and emerging frequency technologies with a unique opportunity for companies worldwide to trial innovative wireless communications technologies.”

Prof. O’Mahony continued: “Ireland is an ideal base for experimental trials of the latest concepts and developments in wireless communications before deployment in target areas worldwide. The local research capacity, combined with ComReg’s enlightened licensing policy, position Ireland to be the wireless research community’s Spectrum Playground."

Key US, UK and European companies including Shared Spectrum Company, QinetiQ, Motorola Research Labs, in addition to government contractors and the top worldwide academic research groups working on these innovative technologies will be participating in the trials.

CTVR is headquartered at Trinity College Dublin, one of a consortium of eight research institutions forming the Centre which is supported by Science Foundation Ireland and IDA Ireland.

Tom Cunningham | alfa
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