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PhD Opportunity: Real-time Radio Channel Prediction Using Machine Learning Accelerated GPU Ray-launching

University of Birmingham - Department of Electronic, Electrical and Systems Engineering

Qualification Type: PhD
Location: Birmingham
Funding for: UK Students, EU Students
Funding amount: Not Specified
Hours: Full Time
Placed On: 21st September 2022
Closes: 31st October 2022

Understanding the radio frequency (RF) channel is essential for wireless communications. In complex, non-line of sight environments, such as dense urban, the RF propagation channel is dominated by multiple reflections, scattering and diffraction. Hence, computationally inexpensive theoretical and empirical models cannot accurately predict the radio channel in such scenario; the industry-standard for such complex environments is the physics-based ray-tracing technique. However, ray-tracing is a computationally costly procedure even with the latest acceleration techniques, which limits its utility in real-time applications. A capability to rapidly compute channel estimates would be an enabler for a number of civilian and electronic warfare technologies. Machine learning methods offer an alternative route to formulating propagation models that can potentially combine the accuracy of physics-based models with the efficiency of theoretical and empirical models. These methods are based on training a network. While the training process is time consuming and completed offline, once the network is trained, predictions can in principle be done in real time. The PhD student will implement a full 3D hybrid ray-tracing method and accelerate the ray-tracing simulations with machine learning. Other activities supporting the study will also be carried out when required. The PhD would suit an applicant with a good first degree in Computer Science, Electrical Engineering, Applied Mathematics or Physics, having a good knowledge of coding and maths. We expect the PhD candidate to develop the expertise required to lead a computational research project, to train students, to interact with colleagues with different backgrounds (physics and engineering) and from different disciplines (i.e., machine learning, electromagnetism, radio-propagation).

Applications are sought from highly motivated students graduating with first degree (2:1 or higher) in engineering, computer science, applied mathematics or physics (and preferably a Master degree) with good programming skills. The funding is only available to UK/EU nationals with (pre-)settled status, and it will cover tuition fees and provide a stipend for 3.5 years at UKRI rates. International students will be considered exceptionally. If a suitable candidate is found before the deadline, the call will be terminated earlier that the stated deadline. For details of the funding available and advice on making your application, please contact: m.navarro-cia@bham.ac.uk

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