Internship | Multi-RAT relaying for reliability in Factories of the Future

Do you want to engage in cutting edge research on 5G cellular communication technology? Are you curious about how 5G is revolutionizing the factories of the future? Then this position is for you!


Den Haag

Education type

university (wo)


Internship and graduation project

Hours a week

Fulltime – 40


Apply now


What will you be doing?

The development of 5G mobile network technology towards the efficient and effective support of a variety of services is primarily driven by the requirements of so-called ‘verticals’, e.g. Automotive/Smart Mobility, eHealth, Media & Entertainment and Factory of the Future (FoF). Each of the verticals offers diverse services/applications with specific characteristics and various technical and performance requirements. For example, the FoF vertical requires 5G network technology to support both Ultra-Reliable Low-Latency Communication (URLLC) services and non-URLLC services. FoF services are generally bursty in nature, e.g. short requests for information, transfer of sensor readings or control commands.

To meet the stringent requirements for URLLC services, user equipment (UE) relaying can be used to increase the transmission reliability. In a relaying scenario, UEs are not only connected to a cellular base station, but potentially also to other nearby UEs, using different radio access technologies (RATs). These nearby UEs act as relay nodes, that increase the reliability by relaying the same data to the base station. Additionally, the coverage of the network is improved, since UEs without a cellular connection can still reach the base station with the help of one or more relay nodes.

The objective of the graduation project is to investigate the potential of UE relaying for increased reliability in different scenarios (outdoor, indoor, factories). Specifically, the following steps are foreseen:
  • To become acquainted with the current UE relaying testbed of TNO. It consists of Pycom boards that support five different RATs, and for each of these RATs some parameter about the quality of the link is available.
  • To design one or more RAT selection and routing algorithms that improve the reliability of all UEs. Options include a distributed algorithm, where every UE uses only its local information, and a centralized one. The algorithm should make a choice between using only one RAT or multiple RATs, where in the latter case the data is duplicated, and hence more radio resources are used. Additionally, historical knowledge about the link qualities might also be used.
  • To implement the above in a basic system-level simulator, which can be used to quickly assess, compare and improve the algorithms.
  • To implement the algorithms on the Pycom boards and do extensive tests in a variety of environments. The algorithms will probably behave differently in every environment, since the dynamics are completely different.
  • Key outcome of the project includes conclusions and recommendations regarding the involved reliability/capacity/latency trade-offs, the attainable reliability gains in different scenarios and what algorithm(s) is/are most suitable to achieve these gains under different circumstances.

What do we require of you?

  • You are a graduate student pursuing a Master's degree, preferably in the direction of Electrical Engineering or Computer Science.
  • You have affinity with / interest in mobile networks, computer simulations and programming experience.
  • You have an enterprising, flexible and cooperative nature.
  • You are also communicative, creative and innovative.

The duration of the internship is seven to nine months.

What can you expect of your work situation?

TNO is an independent research organisation whose expertise and research make an important contribution to the competitiveness of companies and organisations, to the economy and to the quality of society as a whole. Innovation with purpose is what TNO stands for. With 3000 people we develop knowledge not for its own sake but for practical application. To create new products that make life more pleasant and valuable and help companies innovate. To find creative answers to the questions posed by society. We work for a variety of customers: governments, the SME sector, large companies, service providers and non-governmental organisations. Working together on new knowledge, better products and clear recommendations for policy and processes. In everything we do, impact is the key. Our product and process innovations and recommendations are only worth something if our customers can use them to boost their competitiveness.

What can TNO offer you?

You want to work on the precursor of your career; a work placement gives you an opportunity to take a good look at your prospective future employer. TNO goes a step further. It’s not just looking that interests us; you and your knowledge are essential to our innovation. That’s why we attach a great deal of value to your personal and professional development. You will, of course, be properly supervised during your work placement and be given the scope for you to get the best out of yourself. Naturally, we provide suitable work placement compensation.

Has this vacancy sparked your interest?

Then please feel free to apply on this vacancy! For further questions don’t hesitate to contact us.

Contact: Sjors Braam
Phone number: +31 (0)6-536 04674

Note that applications via email and third party applications are not taken into consideration.


Apply now



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