Spotlight on Tech

Helping MITRE Engenuity Develop “5G For the Public Good”

By
Javed Khan
Sr. Director, 5G RAN Product Management
Rakuten Symphony
September 12, 2022
4
minute read

I have been a member of the MITRE Engenuity OpenGen 5G Consortium since it was founded in 2020. This consortium was founded to advance research in 5G technology in the United States and has focused on many use cases including unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs), also known as drones. I have been an active member of the Use Case and Architecture Working Groups within Open Generation working on application of 5G to UAV use cases.

Founded in 2019, MITRE Engenuity is a subsidiary of MITRE, a 60-year-old not-for-profit that solves problems through federally-funded R&D centers and public-private partnerships. What sets the organization apart is its mission to solve challenges to the safety, stability, and well-being of our nation. MITRE Engenuity shares in MITRE Corporation’s heritage to create generational impact by working directly with the private sector to solve complex challenges for public good. It has programs across a variety of technologies including semiconductors, cybersecurity, digital health and 5G.

On September 14, I will be participating in the 2022 Open Generation 5G Summit, a virtual summit with the theme of “Getting to Our 5G Future Faster.” I will be speaking on a roundtable virtual panel called “5G mmWave Use Cases.” It is still possible to participate in the no-cost event by registering at this website.

"MITRE Engenuity takes a use case approach to exploring how 5G and other technologies can benefit the public good."

- Javed Khan, Sr. Director, 5G RAN Product Management, Rakuten Symphony

MITRE Engenuity takes a use case approach to exploring how 5G and other technologies can benefit the public good. For 5G, their first area of focus was on wireless-enabled drones. The use of these drones will provide resiliency and socio-economic benefits in addition to futuristic services.

Already we’ve been working on developing the applications, specifications and architecture needed for drones that can deliver on these promises.

All of this work will lead to a proof of concept that can be used to develop a specification or architecture for 5G-enabled drones that is available to everyone in the ecosystem as a way to jumpstart much of the development around this application. Other 5G use cases are under consideration for the future.

Panel Focus on mmWave and Small Cells

In my panel, we will be discussing the challenges and benefits of building networks using millimeter wave (mmWave) radio spectrum. Also known as frequency range 2 (FR2), the 3GPP has allocated bandwidth in the 24.250 GHz –52.600 GHz frequency range for 5G.

I’ll draw heavily from lessons learned in the mmWave deployments in Japan by Rakuten Mobile. The operator launched an award-winning small cells deployment using mmWave radio frequencies. Small cells are a key part of the 5G network, with CTIA expecting them to make up more than 80% of the network infrastructure.

"Automation of the network management and configuration of these small cells was very important to the success of the Rakuten Mobile deployment."

In Japan, we’ve deployed tens of thousands of them to fill in coverage in dense urban areas with lots of user demand. The operator’s strategy has been to build the network in a seamless way so the small cells co-operate with macro cells for seamless operation for the subscriber. This network design has resulted in very encouraging performance metrics.

Automation of the network management and configuration of these small cells was very important to the success of the Rakuten Mobile deployment, and something I’ll touch on in my panel remarks.  The automation covered all of the tasks that are involved with bringing up a new site, which reduced the deployment cost, but also ensured that once all the equipment was in place, a small cell could be activated in minutes.

There’s much more that I can and will say about this deployment, so if you are interested please sign up to watch.

MITRE Engenuity’s mission to develop applications and technology to serve the public good is a worthy one and I’m looking forward to the panel, discussion, and to help the organization develop more 5G applications for the benefit of everyone.

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