Photo of a display booth for 5G Smart Warehouses at a convention

ARLINGTON VA, October 7th, 2022 — Gathering in Las Vegas alongside other global leaders in wireless innovation at the 2022 Mobile World Congress this past week, the Virginia Tech Applied Research Corporation (VT-ARC) and Old Dominion University (ODU) provided augmented reality (AR) demonstrations of its Resilient Distributed Positioning Network (RDPN) and Distributed Coherent MIMO (DCM) prototypes aimed at enhancing 5G networks in a logistics environment. VT-ARC and its collaborative team of academic and industry partners is currently conducting cutting-edge research and development of innovative NextG wireless network enhancement prototypes to enable future smart logistics applications.

At MWC2022, the team showcased how these new technologies can realize scalable, low-latency, energy-efficient, interference-resilient, and ultra-precise indoor IoT (Internet of Things) positioning and enhanced wireless coverage for IoT devices in an extremely dense indoor environment, such as the modern warehouse.

Applying the latest AR technology, VT-ARC team demonstrated a prototype of the positioning technique and improved wireless coverage of IoT devices using an on-site 3D model of a warehouse. Visitors experienced a unique view of how RDPN and DCM wireless signals communicate between network nodes to IoT devices within the confines of an indoor environment.

Using a tablet, the demonstration showed a robotic forklift circling the area of the physical 3D warehouse model, which provided the visitors an AR visualization of how these RDPN and DCM techniques help to track and monitor the movement of assets and equipment to a degree of accuracy previously unattainable. Lead Project Scientist at ODU’s Virginia Modeling, Analysis & Simulation Center, who also constructed the 3D warehouse model and designed the AR experience, had this to say about its potential:

“Current software can use RDPN data to train machine learning systems that allow for enhanced security needs. By knowing where items are supposed to be, and if an item is actively moving, we can build bounded security solutions that find misplaced inventory.”

VT-ARC delivers tailored analysis, research, and engineering to address problems of national and global importance. Specializing in forming highly collaborative, trusted partnerships across government, industry, and academia. They enable the critical innovations of tomorrow. They leverage the $500M/year multidisciplinary research and innovation ecosystem of Virginia Tech, offering superior analytic and technology solutions to clients across multiple domains.

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