PhD Vacancy on Future Mobile Network Architectures (5G and beyond)

Job description


​imec is the world-leading research and innovation hub in nanoelectronics and digital technologies. The combination of our widely acclaimed leadership in microchip technology and profound software and ICT expertise is what makes us unique. By leveraging our world-class infrastructure and local and global ecosystem of partners across a multitude of industries, we create groundbreaking innovation in application domains such as healthcare, smart cities and mobility, logistics and manufacturing, and energy.

As a trusted partner for companies, start-ups and universities we bring together close to 3,500 brilliant minds from over 70 nationalities. Imec is headquartered in Leuven, Belgium and also has distributed R&D groups at a number of Flemish universities, in the Netherlands, Taiwan, USA, China, and offices in India and Japan. All of these particular traits make imec to be a top-class employer.

University of Antwerp – imec IDLab Research group

The Internet & Data Lab (IDLab) is an imec research group at the University of Antwerp and Ghent University. IDLab focuses its research on internet technologies and data science. IDLab is a joint research initiative between Ghent University and the University of Antwerp. Bringing together 300 internet experts, we develop technologies outperforming current solutions for communication subsystems, high speed and low power networking, distributed computing and multimedia processing, machine learning, artificial intelligence and web semantics. Within Antwerp, where you will work, the overall IDLab research areas are machine learning and wireless networking. IDLab has a unique research infrastructure used in numerous national and international collaborations.

IDLab collaborates with many universities and research centres worldwide and jointly develops advanced technologies with industry (R&D centers from international companies, Flanders’ top innovating large companies and SME’s, as well as numerous ambitious startups).

The research project

Beyond 5G (B5G) wireless systems are expected 1) to increase data rates significantly, 2) to provide ultra-low latency and enhanced connectivity of a massive number of devices, and 3) to bring improvements in network energy efficiency. Moreover, this new generation of networking systems aims to be fully Autonomous Networks (ANs) with management capabilities such as self-configuration, self-healing, self-optimizing, and self-evolving, aspects that today’s networks do not support as their management is mainly manual with some automated assistance.

Advances in Artificial Intelligence (AI) during the last 5-10 years have provided a new set of algorithms and tools to solve challenging problems in multiple domains by learning complex relationships directly from data. These algorithms are also very promising to empower the new generation of intelligent decision engines that present self-dynamic capabilities to create smart business and network operations in a closed-loop fashion. In this project, you, in collaboration with other PhDs students and Senior Researchers, will design and develop a novel platform to share spectrum, network, and computing resources with native support of lifecycle management of AI/ML inferences across different network domains (from Radio Access Network to Core Networks). Moreover, the aimed platform will design and implement a novel network architecture that allows intelligent algorithms to optimize end-to-end across multiple network controllers and orchestrators.

The job

  • You are conducting research in the IDLab AI for Networks (AI4Net) team, enhancing, applying, or extending AI/ML algorithms and creating new ones according to the optimization problem exposed by the networking context.
  • You will implement and analyze novel algorithms and conduct experiments to compare the new algorithms with existing state-of-the-art methods.
  • You will enhance the networking software stack accordantly to support the novel algorithms.
  • You will write detailed evaluation reports on the developed algorithms and executed experiments, publishing them in major conferences and journals.
  • You will develop demonstrators in the framework of European and national research projects (in collaboration with industry). 

Job requirements

  • You have or will soon obtain a Master in Computer Science, Computer Engineering, Electronic Engineering, or equivalent.
  • You have a profound interest in applied artificial intelligence and machine learning.
  • You have a profound interest in at least one of the following topics:
  • Mobile network architectures
  • MAC and PHY layers for 5G and beyond systems.
  • You have a solid engineering background and like to couple in-depth theoretical understanding with challenging practical applications.
  • You have strong experience and strong skills in C++, Python, and DevOps.
  • You are a team player and have strong communication skills.
  • Your English is fluent, both speaking and writing.
  • Prior experience with developing and testing of 5G RAN and Core Network (CN) software stacks (e.g., srsLTE, OAI, SD-RAN, etc.) ranging from PHY layer to MAC, RRC, RLC, and PDCP layers on the RAN side and the functional blocks of AMF, SMF, UPF, and others of the 3GPP 5G Core Network is an advantage.
  • Prior experience/expertise with developing and testing software stacks for MANO frameworks (OSM, ONAP, etc) is a plus.
  • Prior experience/expertise with developing and testing software stacks for MLOps frameworks (Kubeflow, MLFlow, Acumos, etc) is a plus.
  • Prior experience with hands-on experience in designing and implementing software architectures and algorithms is an advantage. 

How to apply
Please apply using the application button on this webpage. Applications sent to us via email will not be considered.

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