The proposed study will focus on the adaptation to satellite scenarios of the technologies developed and studied within 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) allowing for an inclusion of a Non-terrestrial network (NTN) component into the 5G ecosystem and their implementation on Hardware and Software platforms. In this perspective, it is of paramount importance to:
a) assess the impact of the non-terrestrial environment on the technologies already developed for the terrestrial component,
b) design the adaptation required to allow the same technologies to be operated also for the non-terrestrial component,
c) develop a suitable platform for the assessment of point “a” and “b”, and also for future analysis that the standardization activities might require.
The innovative activity that is the subject of this ESA tender is to adapt the 5G radio interface to NTN, with reference to the scenarios above mentioned, and to verify the solutions identified through a PHY / MAC level verification platform.
If successfully completed, the study items can lead to the initiation of a subsequent phase driven by work items aimed at the standardization of the NTN component in release 17. The 3GPP has recently standardized its release 15 containing the first phase of 5G, dubbed as New Radio (NR) by 3GPP, and it is nonetheless progressing at full speed towards the definition of the second phase of 5G that will be contained in release 16 (end of 2019) and 17 (probably end of 2020).