Communication Networks

The Communication Networks curriculum aims at providing specific knowledge in systems and communications networks, multimedia transmission, and in the field of electromagnetic fields to students who already have a solid basic training in information engineering. The main career opportunities include companies that design, manufacture and employ equipment, systems and infrastructures for the acquisition, processing and transportation of information and for their use in multimedia applications; public and private telecommunication services; remote sensing applications; air traffic control bodies, and finally, research institutions. The quality of preparation is confirmed by documented high-level research and by the availability of PhD scholarships financed by companies. 



Wireless networks and multi-antenna systems. Development of accurate mathematical frameworks for analyzing the performance of last generation distributed wireless scenarios in realistic environments characterized by asymmetry of the topology and heterogeneity of the sources. Theoretical models and detailed simulation platforms are elaborated to design advanced medium access protocols based on sophisticated antenna array processing, with the aim of enabling multi-packet capabilities in emerging asynchronous peer-to-peer contexts, including mmWave and ultra-fast WiFi networks.

Antenna arrays. One of the most important categories of antennas is that including so-called "antenna arrays", which consist of a set of antennas fed in such a way as to form a single radiating structure. Thanks to their considerable flexibility, such antennas have a great number of applications. The research activity of the group of electromagnetic fields mainly focuses on modern analysis and synthesis techniques of antenna arrays, in particular for space and airborne applications, such as, for example, SAR (Synthetic Aperture Radar) antennas. The main task of such research activity is the development of innovative mathematical and numerical techniques for antenna array design.

Multimedia communications. Development of techniques able to improve the perceived quality of the multimedia contents (You Tube, HULU, Netflix, Skype) by the end user. Novel adaptive retransmission algorithms for last generation wireless devices (IEEE 802.11e/n/ac/ad)  are designed to exploit the features of the most advanced standards (H.264, MPEG, G.729,...) for audio-video coding. The aim is to improve the existing channel access mechanisms, providing a better multimedia experience for the final users in the presence of heavy traffic loads and stringent quality of service requirements.

Localization and positioning in harsh environments. Location and positioning are usually performed using the navigation satellite systems (global navigation satellite system - GNSS), such as GPS, characterized by poor performance in harsh environments with limited visibility of the sky, or in the presence of inadequate conditions of propagation (urban environments). The research aims to integrate the information provided by satellite systems, using opportunistically (passively) the signals of advanced wireless networks (LTE, WiFi), to improve the accuracy of the location and providing guidance to the position even in the absence of satellite signals.

Microwaves. Since many years, the group of electromagnetic fields collaborates with the synchrotron "Elettra" of Trieste, which is an important research center producing synchrotron light for a great number of applications in physics, chemistry, biology, life sciences, environment sciences, medicine and forensic sciences. In particular, one of the main tasks of this collaboration is that of finding solutions to problems involving FEL (Free Electron Laser) devices, which are a modern category of light sources. Such research requires complex mathematical investigations concerning the interaction between electromagnetic fields and relativistic electrons. 
The group also collaborates with "Danieli Automation" (Buttrio, Udine), on the applications of microwaves to the steel industry.