Public defence in Communications Engineering, M.Sc. Nicolas Malm

Title of the doctoral thesis is: Software-defined Communication Platform Implementation on Commodity Hardware

M.Sc. Nicolas Malm will defend the thesis "Software-defined Communication Platform Implementation on Commodity Hardware" on 12 August 2022 at 12:00 in Aalto University School of Electrical Engineering, Department of Communications and Networking, in lecture hall TU1, Maarintie 8, Espoo.

Opponent: Prof. Leonardo Cardoso, INSA Lyon, France
Custos: Prof. Olav Tirkkonen, Aalto University School of Electrical Engineering, Department of Communications and Networking

Thesis available for public display at:
Doctoral theses in the School of Electrical Engineering:

Press release:

Digitalization is a major current trend. A key component of this process is the increasing connectedness of devices using wireless communication services. The growing number of use-cases and users presents challenges in serving all of them well. The varied requirements and circumstances of these users cannot be adequately served by a single approach. Wireless communication networks must therefore gain in flexibility. Doing so using dedicated hardware is prohibitively expensive in terms of development and deployment costs. Infrastructure must be re-used and shared instead. Commodity hardware combined with application-specific software presents an attractive solution.

The research in this dissertation investigates implementation methods for software-based radio access networks. The aim is to increase the flexibility and efficiency of cellular wireless communication. The characteristics of software-based implementations are studied and methods are presented to exploit their potential. These methods aim to meet the specific needs of latency-critical cellular networks using commodity hardware not specifically designed for this task.

Building on the software-based approach for single nodes, this work further studies software-based, disaggregated network architectures. A key component of such disaggregated implementations is that the various network nodes must be able to communicate effectively with one another. Methods are presented to characterize communication performance between a centralized controller and the distributed nodes it controls. Such a model is useful to understand how best to split functionality while meeting the requirements set upon the system. The proof-of-concept prototypes built for this work demonstrate the feasibility of the ideas presented.

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