Major 6G project starts in Europe

January 04, 2021 // By Nick Flaherty
Major 6G project starts in Europe
The Hexa-X project has 25 members, led by Nokia and Ericsson, to develop technology and strategies in six key areas for next generation 6G networks by 2030

A major project is set to start this week to develop technologies and new strategies for 6G wireless. The Hexa-X project is led by Nokia with Ericsson as the technical lead with 23 other members.

The 2.5 year project project aims to develop and integrate key technologies such as Artificial Intelligence (AI), radio access beyond 100 GHz, network virtualisation and disaggregation for the next generation of wireless networks by 2030.

A timely start of a technology and concept evaluation is required, even if some of these technologies are still on a low Technology Readiness Level (TRL), to understand the potential performance and impact on the overall system architecture, says the project. Developing a new network generation takes about 10 years, and to guide the Research and Innovation (R&I) globally towards 6G during this time, Hexa-X will lay the foundation for the network of 2030 and develop long-term strategical roadmaps based on the project as well as other 6G projects.

Universities and research institutes are at the heart of the project to commercialise the latest technologies. These include Aalto, Chalmers, CEA, Kaiserlautern, Dresden, Madrid, Olu, Torino and Pisa

Other commercial partners include Siemens, Intel, Atos, bcom, Sztaki, Qacom,  Nextworks and Wings ICT Solutions. Operators in the project include Orange, Telefonica and TIM.

“The future is 6G,” said Andreas Wolfgang, Technical Development Manager at Qamcom in Sweden. “Qamcom will be able to contribute with qualitative research based on cutting-edge expertise and many years of experience within telecom and wireless connectivity.”

“Even though there is still a lot of innovation in 5G with the release of new standards, we are already exploring 6G in our research lab. In the 6G era we will see applications that will not only connect humans with machines but also connect humans with the digital world," said Peter Vetter, Head of Access and Devices Research at Nokia Bell Labs.

Next: Six areas for 6G

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