6G Native Extensions for XR Technologies (6G NeXt)

Today we will look at the 6G NeXt project in Germany.

Deutsche Telekom is taking the lead for 6G NeXt. The research project is part of the "6G industry projects for research into integrated systems and sub-technologies for 6th generation mobile communications" program, which is funded by Germany’s Federal Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF). The "6G NeXt" (Native Extensions for XR Technologies) project, which involves nine partners from industry and science, had its kick-off last week in Berlin. Besides Deutsche Telekom AG, the partners and associated partners are DFKI, Fraunhofer FOKUS, LogicWay GmbH, SeeReal Technologies GmbH, TH Wildau, TU Berlin, TU Ilmenau, Volucap GmbH, Flugplatzgesellschaft Schönhagen mbH as well as IDRF e.V.

Future XR applications and services will generate huge amounts of data that needs to be transmitted with high speed and reliability. One of the core tasks of the project is to develop a high-speed software layer with native AI network optimization for real-time data processing and enabling a dynamic distribution of complex computing tasks to the optimal location (split computing).

The official 6G.NeXt Use Cases page states:

6G NeXt aims to develop a scalable, modular and flexible infrastructure to enable a variety of industrial and end-user use cases with requirements exceeding the capabilities of today’s 5G network in terms of intelligence, performance and efficiency. 

One focus of the project is to build a high-performance, high-speed backbone layer that interacts with the underlying network layer via programmable interfaces. This enables computing tasks to be processed locally, in the edge cloud or in different areas of the central cloud. Computing capacity is allocated according to requirements for latency, energy consumption, cost, among other resources. Additional services and extensions optimize cloud infrastructures commonly used today. 

In the pioneering 6G NeXt project, two particularly demanding applications with different requirements are being developed as examples: 

Intelligent drones

A novel anti-collision system for aviation using the example of drones at airports with mixed air traffic. The flight paths of aircraft are monitored in real time and collision risks are predicted using algorithms. In the event of danger, evasive maneuvers are calculated centrally, and, unlike current solutions, the aircraft is also controlled via 6G. This application requires low latency, synchronization of data streams and the possibility to distribute data calculations (split computing).

HOLOCOM (Holographic Communication)

An interactive end-to-end transmission of real-time 3D holographic video with photorealistic content and realistic 3D depth for video conferencing and monitoring/inspection of objects by drones. This application requires high bit rates upstream and downstream as well as distributed and intelligent video processing. 

You can learn all about the project from the official site here.

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