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The project objectives are the development and validation of a single solution capable of emulating the radio propagation conditions of two bi-directional 5G carriers (satellite-satellite or satellite-terrestrial). This has the twin challenges of providing an emulator that accurately models the dynamics, and tightly controls the channel impairments, of a wide variety of scenarios, and one that covers frequency bands spanning nearly 30 GHz.
Processing large bandwidths requires FPGAs with large resource capabilities. Efficient digital processing design is critical to minimize device FPGA costs.
Given the large bandwidths and wide range of frequencies being handled, the introduction of unintended signal distortion by the channel emulator is a challenge that requires careful design and built-in compensation techniques.
The HCE is a new and unique product:
The proposed solution for the Hybrid Channel Emulator (HCE) is based on three components:
There are two major development streams. The first stream includes the development of the IF version of the hybrid channel emulator (HCE) together with FR1 up/down converters (UC/DCs). The second stream is the development of FR2+ UC/DCs, where FR2+ is the 3GPP FR2 frequency band (up to 30 GHz) plus the Ku and Ka satellite bands. The outputs of the streams are integrated and tested to provide the final documentation, hardware and software.
The Kick-off Meeting was held in April 2021.
Work is progressing towards the Preliminary Design Review (PDR) with a focus on System Engineering, finalized technical specifications and converter high-level design. The PDR will be held in July 2021.