Radio Localization and Sensing - the Path from 5G to 6G

One of the hot topics everyone keeps talking about in B5G/6G context is Integrated Sensing and Communications (ISAC) or Joint Sensing and Communications (JSAC). Another term that I came across recently in context of ISAC/JSAC is DFRC. Here is an explanation of the term from this paper

ISAC permits different levels of integration, of which radar-communication coexistence (RCC) and dual-functional radar-communication (DFRC) are two main applications. While RCC refers to simply sharing spectrum for co-existing radar and communication systems, DFRC exploits a fully-shared hardware platform and a unified transmit waveform to simultaneously perform communication and sensing functions. Together with the advantages of shared resources, it is also very challenging to achieve a satisfactory trade-off between sensing and communication functions for both RCC and DFRC systems.

RCC relies on sophisticated interference management and cooperation between the radar and communication transmitters, which requires side-information exchange and thus results in high overhead, but minimal modifications to existing system hardware is needed. While DFRC naturally achieves full cooperation using a single platform, the inherently conflicting requirements of sensing and communication functions pose challenges for dual-functional waveform designs. For both RCC and DFRC systems, the transmit beamforming/waveform design is crucial to enhance the sensing and communication functions, and thus has been widely investigated under different metrics in the literature. Research on ISAC is on the rise, and there is great potential for interplay with other advanced technologies towards better performance.

Coming back to ISAC/JSAC, the recent ELLIIT 6G Symposium had a nice detailed presentation on 'Radio Localization and Sensing: the Path from 5G to 6G' and is available here

Henk Wymeersch, the author, is currently a Professor of Communication Systems with the Department of Electrical Engineering at Chalmers University of Technology, Sweden. He is also a Distinguished Research Associate with Eindhoven University of Technology. His current research interests include the convergence of communication and sensing, in a 5G and Beyond 5G context. The abstract of his talk states:

Increases in carrier frequencies and bandwidths, driven by high-rate communication applications have led to vastly improved capabilities for user positioning. With research underway towards 6G, opportunities for integrating positioning and sensing into the communication system have become even more apparent. The aim of this talk is to provide an overview of this evolution, focusing on 5G and 6G. The talk will comprise 3 main parts: first, the foundations of radio-based positioning are briefly introduced. Second, we go deeper into 5G positioning, covering both the standard approaches, as well as more forward-looking potential modifications. In the last part, we consider 6G from the perspective of positioning and sensing, highlighting some of the use cases, requirements, enablers, but also the corresponding challenges.

While the video of his talk is not available, he created a two-part tutorial, the video of which is embedded below:

The slides and paper is available as follows:

  • Radio Localization and Sensing—Part I: Fundamentals (slides, paper)
  • Radio Localization and Sensing—Part II: State-of-the-Art and Challenges (slides, paper)

This is a very well researched topic so a lot of information is available on the topic. You can see some of our posts listed below. If you have a favourite paper/article/video on this, do let us know in the comments below: 

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