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Unlocking the potential of 5G through cross-layer optimisation

School of Engineering

About the Project

Aberdeen University has a track record of successful development of Internet technologies, and the successful PhD candidate will join the Internet Engineering research activities to develop a focus on Internet TV video transport [1],[2].

Recent experimental analyses have revealed that Internet transport protocols are unable to take advantage of emerging high capacity radio networks (eg 5G) [3][4][5]. Traditional methods infer the available capacity using implicit network signals, such as packet drops or latency, but these are insufficient to track the fast changes of scenario over the new wireless network technologies.

Academia and industry have warned of the need to upgrade the Internet transport system to account for the characteristics of the new emerging wireless media. Without this, there is a real risk that current Internet services would not be able to exploit the increase in available spectrum and would then fail to provide the expected benefits. A fresh approach is required to explore the problem using measurement-based data to derive a more accurate selection of signals to inform the decisions about what rate can be sustained across an Internet path.

This project will explore mechanisms to boost the performance of high-speed traffic over the new wireless interface. The target are new transport layer techniques to minimise the latency and increase the responsiveness of protocols. The focus of this project will be on low-latency and high-capacity applications, such as high-speed real-time video or video interactive applications.

The research will also explore new wireless interfaces and end-to-end protocols that exploit implicit and explicit network signals, queuing mechanisms (e.g. active queue management), traffic classification, router and protocol behaviour, and signalling mechanisms. The project will also address the problematics related to security and data protection where we seek to use opaque and/or semi-opaque transport header to hide sensitive information.

Candidates should have (or expect to achieve) a UK honours degree at 2.1 or above (or equivalent) in Electronic Engineering; Computer Science; Software Engineering.

Experience with the Internet Protocol Stack and network protocols is essential.

A strong background in networking technology is important. A prospective candidate must have a good understanding networking and is expected to develop detailed understanding of Internet transport technologies and internet measurement. This must be supported by a proven ability to program in C/C++ and Linux software development. The successful applicant will work with computer tools for network simulation, protocol implementation and/or analysis of testbed data from actual deployed equipment.


• Apply for Degree of Doctor of Philosophy in Engineering
• State name of the lead supervisor as the Name of Proposed Supervisor
• State ‘Self-funded’ as Intended Source of Funding
• State the exact project title on the application form

When applying please ensure all required documents are attached:

• All degree certificates and transcripts (Undergraduate AND Postgraduate MSc-officially translated into English where necessary)
• Detailed CV

Informal inquiries can be made to Dr R Secchi () with a copy of your curriculum vitae and cover letter. All general enquiries should be directed to the Postgraduate Research School ()

Funding Notes

This project is advertised in relation to the research areas of the discipline of Electrical and Electronic Engineering. The successful applicant will be expected to provide the funding for Tuition fees, living expenses and maintenance. Details of the cost of study can be found by visiting View Website. THERE IS NO FUNDING ATTACHED TO THIS PROJECT.


[1] G Fairhurst , profiles/g.fairhurst

[2] R Secchi, profiles/r.secchi

[3] A. Custura, R. Secchi, G. Fairhurst, “Exploring DSCP Modification Pathologies in the Internet”, Comput. Commun., vol. 127, pp. 86-94, Sept 2018.

[4] A. Y. Tambuwal, R. Secchi, “Modeling a New Startup Algorithm for TCP New Reno”, Intl. J. of Eng. Tech., 5(4), pp. 1-6, 2018.

[5] R. Secchi, A.C. Mohideen, G. Fairhurst, “Performance Analysis of Next Generation Web Access via Satellite”, Int. J. of Satell. Comm. N., 36(1), pp. 29-43, 2016.

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