Steven Gao features in article on 5 ways Kent is changing the world

6G Network

Professor Steven Gao, Head of the Communications Research Group at the School of Engineering and Digital Arts, University of Kent, has been interviewed by Kent Online news on his research into intelligent antenna technology for 6G mobile communication systems.

Professor Gao has been leading research into intelligent antennas for 6G network. The results of the research could extend the reach of mobile internet to the most remote corners of the world.

In the article, Professor Gao says: ‘We at the Kent are very fortunate to have a world-class research group in wireless communication technology. We are constantly looking at the development of innovative technologies for future generation of mobile communications. 6G is expected to take place around 2030. The idea of 6G is to get high-speed and secure connections anywhere anytime- whether you’re sitting in the International Space Station, or on a cruise in the middle of the ocean, or on top of a mountain, you’ll still have signal. The concept is you would be using many satellites in space, combined with communication systems on the ground and in the air. It’s fully integrated so you can cover any place at any time in principle’.

The researchers, in collaboration with the University of Warwick, KU Leuven Belgium and TU Graz Austria, are funded by Engineering and Physical Science Research Council, UK. They have been experimenting with designing ‘intelligent’ antenna which can not only provide high-speed communications, but also harvest energy from radio signals in the environment for achieving “green” communication networks. The project also aims to make the antenna almost unnoticeable, as 5G masts have been criticised as an ‘eyesore’.

Professor Gao said: ‘The antenna can be put on the lamp posts – because it’s so thin, around a few millimeters for example, you can just stick it on a lamp post and then cover it with some covering. That will be ideal, but of course there is still lots of research to be done’.

The full article is available to read on Kent Online’s website, here: