By Scott Wright

THE University of Glasgow has received a multi-million-pound grant to support its development of a facility to test 6G communications systems.

The £2.6 million funding boost from the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council will back plans by the institution to expand the existing microwave and terahertz research lab, based at its Electronic Systems Design Centre, with new equipment.

It is said the facility will be the first of its kind to comprehensively test the ability of prototype devices to process the complex signals and waveforms that underpin 6G communications.

Researchers from the university’s James Watt School of Engineering will work with partners from across the UK to develop a “test cluster” – a suite of instruments capable of probing the features of new devices that will enable ultrafast digital communication up to 50 times faster than 5G.

Professor Edward Wasige of the James Watt School, principal investigator of the project, said: “6G communications networks are expected to be commercially available by 2030, and to deliver transformative benefits beyond the already remarkable capabilities of 5G.

“However, there is still a great deal of work to be done to develop the infrastructure, spectrum and protocols that will support data transfer at the speeds of 1.1 terahertz and beyond to deliver 6G. Our new facility will play a key role in supporting the development of the technology which will underpin the next generation of wireless communications.”