Telecommunications

Telecommunications

The Telecommunications Research Group consists of research and teaching in four broad areas:

  • wireless communications;
  • data network;
  • signal processing and
  • photonics

An important theme unifying research in the group is “Efficient, robust and secure, multimedia communications, particularly in mobile environments.”

This theme recognises the importance of efficient spectrum utilisation in physical wireless communications, the need to manage quality of service and mobility issues in data networking, and the fact that the major source of traffic is multimedia content, which must be compressed, communicated and appropriately interpreted.

Within the telecommunications space, there is a growing recognition of the importance of distributed systems which can simultaneously exploit redundancy and diversity. As evidence of this trend, distributed coding techniques have emerged separately in the fields of source coding, channel coding and network coding, which essentially cover the sub-disciplines within the group. If there is a grand vision for the telecommunications research group, it lies in the development of methods and systems to exploit redundancy and diversity in distributed environments, so as to advance distributed multimedia communications.

A number of researchers contribute towards National ICT Australia (NICTA), Australia’s Information and Communications Technology (ICT) Centre of Excellence. 

The research work of the wireless communications group concentrates on multiple access, coding, modulation and equalisation and synchronisation mechanisms.

The major research areas of the group are:

  • Multiuser information theory: Error control coding, fundamental limits, etc
  • Turbo-like processing and iterative receiver design: Regarded as the latest revolutionary technique, for tough channels (RF and underwater)
  • Wireless network coding: Use network coding rather than routing
  • Cooperative communications: Practical approach to achieve diversity through cooperation
  • Cognitive radio: Spectrum agile communications
  • Dedicated short range communications: For inter-vehicle comms and related applications

The data networks group research work focuses on WAN network technologies, Quality of Service, and Mobile Internet Services.

The major areas of current work are:

  • Greening the internet: Energy efficient routers
  • Wireless sensor networks:For health-care, pollution monitoring
  • Security and trust: Key generation/authentication, privacy and trust in p2p networks
  • Telepresence systems: Speaker localisation (signal processing); Network protocols
  • Quantum coding for communications: Major new cross disciplinary area

Research in the signal processing group concentrates on audio, video and image processing, compression and analysis.

The members contribute actively to standardisation processes, and hold numerous patents in the areas of image compression, pattern recognition, image enhancement and signal processing.

The major research areas are:

  • Paralinguistic speech processing: Emotion, speaker, language recognition; forensics
  • Cochlear speech processing
  • Cognitive load measurement
  • Genomic signal processing
  • Radar signal processing
  • Image and video compression
  • Image enhancement
  • Robust and interactive media communication

The photonics group is home to a variety of research projects centred around polymer and organic materials for photonics applications.

Amongst others, the group hosts projects targeting the design and fabrication of novel polymer-based segmented cladding fibres, the development of nano-material self-assembly processes for display technology and the development of fibre Bragg grating-based hydrophone systems.

The group has active links with industry partners such as Plastic Logic, Silanna and numerous academic institutions such as Cambridge University, the University of Melbourne and City University Hong-Kong.

Current areas of research include:

  • Specialty silica and polymer optical fibres
  • Photonic fibre devices: Lasers, gratings, amplifiers
  • Planar photonic components
  • Fibre based sensors: Structural health monitoring, distributed voltage/current sensors
  • Diamond-based optical circuitry: Including UV emitting devices
  • Self-assembling photonic materials
  • New photonic materials: Including organic materials for vision, display, tactile sensors