Publications

Journal Paper

Title: 5G Experimentation for Public Safety: Technologies, Facilities and Use Cases

Authors: Mojca VOLK, Janez STERLE

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: IEEE Access

DOI: 10.1109/ ACCESS.2021.3064405

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: This paper studies 5G PPDR experimentation associated with novel virtualized and cloud-native 5G technologies, architectures and deployment options, as well as feasibility studies and field performance and verifications trials involving vertical-specific 5G infrastructures and applications. Key enabling technologies, such as massive multiple input multiple output (MIMO), device-to-device (D2D), network slicing and multi-access edge computing (MEC) are discussed and 5G PPDR architecture and deployment options are investigated. A dedicated 5G PPDR experimentation facility is presented, and a case study of hands-on experimentation is provided. Pilot implementation deploying 5G IOPS as part of the 5GASP project is mentioned with key technology insights (using novel cloud-native techniques to achieve distributed application deployment and required services resilience exploiting OpenStack, Kubernetes, OSM and ONAP concepts).

Conference Paper

Title: Automated onboarding, testing and validation for NetApps and Verticals

Authors: Andreea Bonea et. al

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: International Symposium on Signals, Circuits and Systems - ISSCS Iasi, 2021

DOI: 10.1109/ISSCS52333.2021.9497420

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: Joint paper between project participants Orange Romania and Neobility. Paper written as a result of the work performed on the european research projects projects 5GASP, Vital 5G and ICT-41. The paper aims to describe the 5G architecture and the testbeds for NetApps. A proposal for a Vehicle Route Optimizer NetApp, from the field of automotive, is presented. This can be tested and deployed following an iterative testing methodology and we introduce a paradigm focused on a fully automated toolchain that caters to the production of any NetApps with very little human interaction through open source software automation tools. In the context of the 5G-PPP project 5GASP we review the testing, integration and deployment of NetApps for improved ease of access and distribution.

Conference Paper

Title: An automated CI/CD process for testing and deployment of Network Applications over 5G infrastructure

Authors: Kostis Trantzas, Christos Tranoris, Spyros Denazis, Rafael Direito, Diogo Gomes, Jorge Gallego-Madrid, Ana Hermosilla, Antonio F. Skarmeta

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: 2021 IEEE International Mediterranean Conference on Communications and Networking (MeditCom)

DOI: 10.1109/MeditCom49071.2021.9647628

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: As 5G standards have largely matured, further enabling the radical development of 5G networks, the pressure for mobile operators to keep up with widening range of industry and contemporary use cases increases. Consequently, many approaches are emerged from the perspective of the vertical's interaction with the 5G system especially while onboarding specific vertical Network Applications (or NetApps). This work discusses an approach which reduces the complexity of this interaction by introducing a novel yet standard based vertical onboarding model. Our approach focuses on preserving interoperability and reproducibility with other systems through the exclusive utilization of data models derived by embracing well-known industry standards. Being also pragmatic, the mechanisms presented in this paper are implemented and applied in a large distributed 5G infrastructure.

Journal Paper

Title: Links between 5G PPP projects: the road from the past to the future

Authors: Roman Odarchenko, Giorgi Labadze

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: Scientific and Practical Cyber Security Journal (SPCSJ) 5(2): 45-50

DOI: Visit journal link

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: To ensure the European leadership in the direction of the development and deployment of 5G networks 5G PPP in close collaboration with EC supports different related activities. There were already launched the 5G PPP project of three phases. It was shown that they are closely linked. This aims to present and analyze the links between 5G-Xcast, 5GTOURS, and 5GASP projects, the continuity of the conducted research activities, and new directions of future research. There were showcased which technologies and solutions from the past projects were reused for other projects and probably will be reused for further studies.

Conference Paper

Title: Security and Trust in the Integration of Network Functions within the 5G Architecture: The 5GASP Project

Authors: Jorge Gallego-Madrid, Ramon Sanchez-Iborra, Antonio F. Skarmeta

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: MobiSec 2021. The 5th International Symposium on Mobile Internet Security

DOI: TBD

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: European H2020-funded project 5GASP is developing an unified methodology to define the design, development, and onboarding of Network Applications (NetApps) within the scope of different vertical services. The principal aim of this work is to present such methodology as well as the main objectives of the project. The presented workflow allows a meticulous evaluation and certification of novel NetApps prior to their deployment in functional 5G systems.

Conference Paper

Title: Towards Low-latent & Load-balanced VNF Placement with Hierarchical Reinforcement Learning

Authors: Xenofon Vasilakos, Monchai Bunyakitanon, Reza Nejabati and Dimitra Simeonidou

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: IEEE International Mediterranean Conference on Communications and Networking, 7–10 September 2021

DOI: TBD

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: Current orchestration frameworks lack intelligence and handle resources by neglecting service-level and systemwide performance. Towards addressing this gap, we propose a Hierarchical Reinforcement Learning (HRL) design targeting Virtual Network Function (VNF) placement comprised of (i) a local level prediction module deployed at system nodes; and (ii) a global Reinforcement Learning (RL) module topping the hierarchy, utilising live local predictions and adapting placement to systemwide dynamics. Besides Global, the local level integrates an RL module that continuously and accurately predicts end-to-end (e2e) service latency after VNF placements, and a node-local CPU load prediction model. HRL’s is designed to stand fully autonomously or to complement and augment existing orchestrators lacking intelligence with a previously unexplored distributed multi-RL approach. Our performance evaluation over an actual 5G testbed implementation and use case shows that HRL can significantly outperform both Open Source Mano and heuristic-based VNF placement while reflecting a more complex trade-off between load and e2e delay, particularly under CPU overloading conditions.

Journal Paper

Title: From Network Functions to NetApps: The 5GASP Methodology

Authors: Jorge Gallego-Madrid, Ramon Sanchez-Iborra, Antonio Skarmeta

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: Computers, Materials & Continua

DOI: 10.32604/cmc.2022.021754

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: As the 5G ecosystem continues its consolidation, the testing and validation of the innovations achieved by integrators and verticals service providers is of preponderant importance. In this line, 5GASP is a European H2020-funded project that aims at easing the idea-to-market process through the creation of an European testbed that is fully automated and self-service, in order to foster rapid development and testing of new and innovative 5G Network Applications (NetApps). The main objective of this paper is to present the 5GASP's unified methodology to design, develop and onboard NetApps within the scope of different vertical services, letting them use specific 5G facilities. Besides, we examine the whole 5GASP process in a tutorial fashion by adopting a specific use case focusing on the integration of a virtual On-Board Unit (vOBU) service that permits offloading processing from the attached vehicle and serving data-access requests. As demonstrated, the presented workflow permits the agile, rigorous, and safe development, testing and certification of NetApps, which will enable valuable in-network services for 5G and beyond infrastructures.

Conference Paper

Title: HELICON: Orchestrating low-latent & load-balanced Virtual Network Functions

Authors: Monchai Bunyakitanon, Xenofon Vasilakos, Reza Nejabati, Dimitra Simeonidou

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: IEEE ICC'22 - NGNI Symposium

DOI: TDB

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: Current orchestration frameworks lack intelligence and handle resources by neglecting service-level and system-wide performance. Towards addressing this gap, we propose a Hierarchical Reinforcement Learning (HRL) design targeting Virtual Network Function (VNF) placement comprised of (i) a local level prediction module deployed at system nodes; and (ii) a global Reinforcement Learning (RL) module topping the hierarchy, utilising live local predictions and adapting placement to system-wide dynamics. Our performance evaluation over our 5GASP supported 5G testbed shows that HRL can significantly outperform both Open Source Mano and heuristic-based VNF placement while reflecting a more complex trade-off between load and e2e delay, particularly under CPU overloading conditions. This work poses a significant contribution to the intelligent orchestration aspects of our 5GASP NetApp under development (NetApp 7).

Conference Paper

Title: Towards a Fully Automated System for Testing and Validating NetApps

Authors: Rafael Direito, Diogo Gomes, Rui L. Aguiar

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: 2022 IEEE International Conference on Network Softwarization (NetSoft)

DOI: TDB

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: 5G technologies provide several advancements regarding low latency and high bandwidth network scenarios, thus enabling new vertical use cases. Nonetheless, the lack of testing and validation mechanisms for NFV-based services poses a severe challenge in reducing their time to market. In this work we showcase a service to automate the validation of 5G NetApps, thus striving towards reducing the time to market of these applications, and introducing a new layer of trust in their reliability and availability.

Conference Paper

Title: Advanced 5G Architectures for Future NetApps and Verticals

Authors: C. Patachia-Sultanoiu, I. Bogdan, G. Suciu, A. Vulpe

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: IEEE International Black Sea Conference on Communications and Networking (BlackSeaCom)

DOI: 10.1109/BlackSeaCom52164.2021.9527889

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: With a growing commercial and innovation potential for software developers to provide new and innovative 5G-empowered network applications (NetApps) across multiple industry verticals, 5G architecture and infrastructure are challenged to continuously evolve in order to cope with all these NetApps requirements. The paper is focused on 5G architectures adaptation for future NetApps and verticals and begins with a short introduction on 5G current and future environment, then continues with the 5G-PPP projects that contributed to early deployment of 5G testbed in Romania. Further we will focus on the NetApps and vertical context, as they are highlighted through the two 5G-PPP projects, VITAL-5G and 5GASP, the step by step 5G network evolution to support all these challenging NetApps and vertical’s use cases.

Conference Paper

Title: Evaluation of electromagnetic field exposure in indoor spaces where there are located base stations with distributed antenna system

Authors: Nedelcu, Marius, Victor Niţu, and Teodor Petresc

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: International Symposium on Signals, Circuits and Systems (ISSCS)

DOI: 10.1109/ISSCS52333.2021.9497401.

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: In the context of the future development of the 5G (fifth generation) network, this paper focuses on assessing the level of exposure to electromagnetic field generated by mobile telephony stations installed inside buildings. A number of 60 broadband measurements of the power density of the ambient electromagnetic field were performed and the maximum exposure coefficient was calculated as a percentage value in shops belonging to Orange Romania. We also proceeded to the measurement of two office buildings in which the distributed antenna systems are larger than in the case of shops. In this case the measurements were made with a narrowband device with which it was possible to measure the contribution of each technology. For each site power density measurements were made based on the maximum exposure reference values for each technology and the total exposure coefficients were calculated under the hypothesis that the stations would emit at maximum power. The results showed that the exposure to the environmental field in shops is low, being 5 times lower than the reference value in over 90% of cases. In the office premises, where the maximum possible exposure coefficient was estimated, values of over 40% of the reference level were also highlighted, which in the context of 5G installation, if the emission powers are not reduced, could lead to values of the total exposure coefficient that would approach 100% of the reference level.

Conference Paper

Title: Evaluation of electromagnetic field exposure in the vicinity of mobile phone base stations

Authors: Marius Nedelcu, VIctor Nițu, Teodor Petrescu

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: IEEE International Black Sea Conference on Communications and Networking

DOI: 10.1109/BlackSeaCom52164.2021.9527794.

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: The present paper aims to assess the level of exposure to ambient electromagnetic field, generated especially by mobile phone stations. In a first phase, before the implementation of 5G (fifth generation), the power density was measured in the vicinity of 1750 base stations of Orange Romania SA, distributed throughout the country, and was reported at the lowest reference value provided of the national legislation for the general public in the case of the mobile telephony systems in which Orange Romania’s stations operate. The maximum exposure coefficient was thus obtained as a percentage value from the limits provided in ICNIRP (International Committee on Non-Ionizing Radiation Protection). In phase 2, after the development of the 5G network in Bucharest, 122 sites were re-measured, again calculating the maximum exposure coefficient as a percentage value. The results showed that regardless of the environment, over 90% of the measurements are below 0.2% of the limits provided by ICNIRP and 99% of the measurements are below 2% of the limits provided by ICNIRP.

Conference Paper

Title: 5GASP: Security and Trust in NetApp Deployment and Operation

Authors: Jorge Gallego-Madrid, Ana Hermosilla, Antonio F. Skarmeta

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: Joint European Conference on Networks and Communications & 6G Summit (EuCNC/6G Summit): Workshop 8 - From 5G to 6G Automated and Intelligent SecuriTy: FAST

DOI: Not Yet Available

Paper Link: Not Yet Available

Relevance to the Project: Not Yet Available

Conference Paper

Title: Implementing a holistic approach to facilitate the onboarding, deployment and validation of NetApps

Authors: Kostis Trantzas, Christos Tranoris, Spyros Denazis, Rafael Direito, Diogo Gomes, Jorge Gallego-Madrid, Ana Hermosilla, Antonio F. Skarmeta

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: IEEE International Mediterranean Conference on Communications and Networking (MeditCom) 2022

DOI: Not Yet Available

Paper Link: Not Yet Available

Relevance to the Project: The 5G system promises to deliver an environment for applications and markets that can easily capitalize on the new services and advanced interfaces that the 5G developments introduce. Recently, in the context of European research and innovation actions, the term NetApp was introduced. A NetApp, in the context of the 5G System, is defined as a set of services that provide certain functionalities to the verticals and their associated use cases. While there is no specific standard for describing the NetApp concept, the ETSI NFV model is adopted to describe the delivery and deployment of NetApps. This work presents an approach for automating the deployment and testing of NetApps in the context of the 5G system. The envisaged process focuses on innovations related to the operation of experiments and tests across several domains, providing software support tools for Continuous Integration and Continuous Deployment (CI/CD) of NetApps and their artifacts in a secure and trusted environment.

Conference Paper

Title: 5GASP's approach to the onboarding, deployment and validation of 5G NetApps

Authors: Rafael Direito, Diogo Gomes, Kostis Trantzas, Christos Tranoris

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: IEEE International Mediterranean Conference on Communications and Networking (MeditCom) 2022

DOI: Not Yet Available

Paper Link: Not Yet Available

Relevance to the Project: Although 5G technologies are becoming widespread, the development and validation of 5G applications are still challenging. This demo paper showcases 5GASP's onboarding, deployment, and validation methodologies and how they facilitate and speed up this process.

Conference Paper

Title: Deployment of 5G Network Applications over Multidomain and Dynamic Platforms

Authors: RAna Hermosilla, Jorge Gallego-Madrid, Pedro Martinez-Julia, Ved Kafle, Kostis Trantzas, Christos Tranoris, Rafael Direito, Diogo Gomes, Jordi Ortiz, Spyros Denazis and Antonio Skarmeta

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: 2022 IEEE Future Networks World Forum (FNWF) - S6: Symposium on Security for 5G and Future Networks

DOI: Not Yet Available

Paper Link: Not Yet Available

Relevance to the Project: 5G mobile communications are bringing a plethora of applications that are challenging existing network infrastructures. These services demand a dynamic, flexible and adaptive infrastructure capable of fulfilling the rigorous requirements they need to operate correctly. Another key point is the need of real-time reactions in the architecture configurations to effectively satisfy changes in the user’s behavior. To address these issues, Network Function Virtualization (NFV) and Software-Defined Networking (SDN) paradigms arise as enablers of the network infrastructures of the future. These technologies will permit the design and development of a new set of network applications that will be dynamically managed and orchestrated over multiple domains in an effortless way. In this work, we present an architecture that interconnects two facilities located in Spain and Japan, which permits the deployment of distributed applications. Besides, we detail how the control and data planes are managed to enable the operation of the system.

Conference Paper

Title: Dynamic Deployment and Testing of Virtual On-board Units in 5G

Authors: Jorge Gallego-Madrid, Ana Hermosilla and Antonio Skarmeta

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: 2022 IEEE Future Networks World Forum (FNWF) - S10: Symposium on 5G for Connected and Automated Mobility

DOI: Not Yet Available

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: 5G networks are encountering virtualization technologies as the foundations of the softwarization of the infrastructure. The usage of these techniques in the Connected and Automated Mobility (CAM) vertical is the key to address mobility and computing issues. The next generation of CAM services are demanding continuous sensor-data gathering and processing, but current solutions lack of flexibility and computing capabilities in the On-Board Units (OBUs). Consequently, a dynamic intermediate stratum with adaptable networking resources and data processing offloading is required to cover the requirements imposed by the upcoming vehicular applications and users. Besides, due to the changing nature of these environments, dynamic testing and validation of the deployed services is necessary to assure their correct functioning. In this line, a solution that exploits the Multi-access Edge Computing (MEC) paradigm to instantiate virtual OBUs (vOBUs) to act as virtual counterparts of the physical ones is presented. By doing so, in-vehicle OBUs can be protected from the characteristic disconnections of vehicular networks using the vOBU as an intermediate communication layer. Besides, they can offload heavy computing processes to the edge. The solution is dynamically deployed as a Network Application (NetApp) in a real 5G testbed in the context of the 5GASP project, in which it is also possible to test and evaluate the functioning of the NetApp after the deployment.

Conference Paper

Title: Towards an intelligent 6G architecture: the case of jointly Optimised handover and Orchestration

Authors: Xenofon Vasilakos, Sharday Olowu, Reza Nejabati, Dimitra Simeonidou

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: 47th World Wireless Forum meeting (WWRF47), Bristol, United Kingdom, 21-23 June, 2022

DOI: Not Yet Available

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: How to go beyond 5G deployment automation and make beyond 5G natively automated powered by native AI.

Conference Paper

Title: On the design of a native Zero-touch 6G architecture

Authors: Navdeep Uniyal, Juan Parra-Ullauri, Anderson Bravalheri, Sharday Olowu, Xenofon Vasilakos, Reza Nejabati, Dimitra Simeonidou

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: 47th World Wireless Forum meeting (WWRF47), Bristol, United Kingdom, 21-23 June, 2022

DOI: Not Yet Available

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: How to go beyond 5G deployment automation and make beyond 5G natively automated powered by native AI.

Conference Paper

Title: NetOr: An Inter-domain Vertical Service Orchestrator for 5G Networks

Authors: Joao Alegria, Rafael Direito, Daniel Gomes, Daniel Corujo, Diogo Gomes

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: 2022 IEEE Conference on Network Function Virtualization and Software Defined Networks (NFV-SDN) - Mobislice Workshop

DOI: Not Yet Available

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: Current 5G vertical service orchestration solutions suffer from several limitations, mainly: (i) lack of standardiza- tion, (ii) monolithic architectures, and (iii) low support for inter- domain scenarios, for instance. This paper proposes the devel- opment of a new 5G vertical service orchestration platform that solves these problems and supports intricate use cases. This new system, named NetOr, will inherit many of the abstractions and functionalities already employed while tackling the mentioned issues while providing increased maintainability, flexibility, and scalability, since a Service-Oriented Architecture was followed.

Conference Paper

Title: GAIA 5G: A Multi-Access Smart-Campus Architecture

Authors: Jorge Gallego-Madrid, Luis Bernal-Escobedo, Rodrigo Asensio, Ana Hermosilla, Alejandro Molina Zarca, Jordi Ortiz, Ramon Sanchez-Iborra

Title of the Journal/Proc./Book: 2022 GIoTS Global IoT Summit (Dublin, Ireland, 20-23 June, 2022)

DOI: Not Yet Available

Paper Link: Link

Relevance to the Project: Smart-campuses are an emerging ecosystem that permit to enhance the performance and efficiency of academic facilities. Besides, they are also adopted as research, development, and testing platforms for the integration of novel management and governance mechanisms in complex ICT infrastructures. In this line, they are considered as small smart-city-like scenarios which can be used as a playground prior to large-scale deployments. This work presents the GAIA 5G smart-campus, located in the Espinardo campus of the University of Murcia (Spain). In the first place, its technological architecture is presented, detailing the multi-access platform that provides 5G, Internet of Things (IoT), and vehicular communications connectivity. Also, the virtualized computation environment is described. Thanks to these two pillars, GAIA 5G has the potential to host diverse use cases in multiple verticals, such as 5G connectivity, Network Function Virtualization (NFV) management and orchestration, or cybersecurity, which are also described. As discussed along the paper, GAIA 5G is an operative smart-campus infrastructure ready to support state-of-the-art research and accommodate novel 5Gand-beyond (B5G) test cases.