Wireless Communication for IoT (Internet of Things)     



Wireless Communication for IoT (Internet of Things) - overview

Wireless communication system is the essential part for IoT infrastructure, which acts as the bridge for dual directional communication for data collection and control message delivery. It can be applied to various IoT applications, including mission critical industries, such as power grid, oil field, and cases in our routine life like the smart city. The Wireless Communication for IoT project is a worldwide project led by IBM Research China. The participants include IBM Watson Lab and India Lab. In this project, we summarize the common challenges and issues on wireless communication for IoT applications:

  • Huge volume of sensors with varied types and distributed sites need to be connected, managed and maintained
  • High reliable communication will be required under the environment with lots of interferences
  • Available spectrum resources will be very limited for new IoT wireless network
  • For harsh outdoor area, low power consumption and simple architecture will be required
  • In harsh outdoor environment, the installation and maintenance will be more challenging

In order to solve those issues, we build up an end-to-end SDR wireless platform for IoT., to support the optimized communication from the senor network to the wide area radio network. We used the IT-based software-defined radio (SDR) technology to complete all the base band processing on general IT platform with multi-cores processors, such as POWER, x86 and Cell BE. The acceleration technologies, such as SIMD, vector processing, parallel processing, etc., have been used to speed up the signal processing with extremely low latency. Meanwhile, some wireless optimization technologies are also applied to the whole system, including the dynamic spectrum allocation, interference mitigation, and energy efficiency design.


For the wireless communications for IoT, the technology innovations include:

  • IT-based SDR technology: The system will be flexible to meet different requirements from customers or deployments.
  • Wireless system optimization technology: 4G wireless is optimized to improve the spectrum efficiency, interefrence resistance, and long distance covergae
  • Self organize network (SON) technology: Various auto optimization technologies are developed to provide large scale and low complexity deployment.
  • Open platform makes it easy to support value-added applications and services

The following figure shows the progress we achieved in wireless research/system in recent years.


Besides the cooperation with IBM worldwide, we collaborate with China local or international top class universities actively and obtain many achievements whether on academic research or projects.