The Challenge

Develop high capacity multichannel, multiband, point-to-point (PTP), point-to-multipoint (PMP) and mesh radio systems used in public safety and defence applications.

  • Meet military-specific performance requirements and uses cases, including security and survivability requirements that far surpass commercial equipment.
  • Deliver broadband communication services across multiple network topologies under various service delivery requirements including quality of service, latency, throughput, resiliency, and mobility.
  • Must be done at a reasonable price and over a scarce frequency spectrum.

Client: Ultra Electronics TCS
Location: London, UK and Montreal, Canada


The Breakthrough Innovation

To overcome these challenges a radical approach was required. This was accomplished by leveraging programmable 4G technology into FPGA and Network Processors combined with state of the art broadband RF technologies.

In depth customization across multiple layers of the wireless communication stack was then possible to support the various network topologies, security and service delivery requirements of the many use cases needed by military communications. Digital Signal Processing (DSP) algorithms combined with RF technologies were instrumental in realizing a high performance, multi-band and cost effective radio system.

The Details

Hardware Design

Electronic design of multiple high-speed, mixed-signal MODEM Printed Circuit Board (PCB), including:

  • Hardware and mechanical design concept and architecture
  • Design of wideband RF transceivers (FDD/TDD, 2x2 MIMO)
  • Hardware design based on Xilinx FPGA and NXP network processors
  • Post-layout simulations of high-speed mixed-signal circuits
  • System modeling and simulations (Matlab/Simulink) and FPGA detailed architecture of Modem and network processing sub-system (QAM, OFDMA)
  • HW and RF Testing and characterization, HW/FPGA/SW Integration and production support
  • EMIC/EMC, ESD Test and characterization to ensure compliance with standards
Software Architecture, Design, Tests & Integration
  • End to end architecture of real time embedded software of the entire radio system (network processing, MAC and routing, security and encryption, RF calibration, etc.)
  • Multiple Board Support Package and device drivers (PCIe, USB, SPI, I2C, Ethernet, SW/FW upgrades, etc.)
  • Networking functions: packet classification, switching, routing, Quality-of-Service (QoS), ingress/egress policing, etc.
  • Wireless Medium Access Controller (MAC) communication stacks design, customization and optimization
  • Optimization of throughput and latency performances of multiple hardware accelerators (encryption, packet classifier) using advanced software design algorithms
  • Porting, customization and integration of LTE User equipment (Band-14) to improve the coverage and the mobility performances of the radio systems
  • Multiple developments of automated scripts to test, characterize, and calibrate the radio system performances
  • Development of configurable network traffic generator enabling test and characterization (throughput, latency, jitter) of multiple radio systems with different node topologies (PTP, PTMP, mesh)
Additional Support
  • Principal consultants during technical due diligence for the strategic acquisition of Intellectual Property (IP)
  • Multiple field trials support, face to face meetings with multiple international customers, technical presentations and demos
  • Research projects for advanced multi-user access and adaptive antenna systems
Technology Used
  • Xilinx FPGAs
  • NXP Network Processor
  • Broadband wireless RF transceiver
  • MIMO Technologies, OFDM, QAM

The Result

After multiple successful demos, field trials, and certification testing, the product is now in full production with multiple clients.