TU Ilmenau researches mobile phone generation of the future 6G

To research the mobile phone generation of the future, 6G, the Federal Ministry of Education and Research is funding the establishment of four large-scale national research hubs with 250 million euros - TU Ilmenau is involved in two of these hubs.The 6G research hubs will produce innovations in new communication technologies, such as wireless data transmission and fiber-optic-based networks.


According to the forecast of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research, 6G will be the "mobile high-performance data technology of the future" and will revolutionize our communications in the next decade. It is expected that as early as 2030, the upcoming sixth generation of mobile communications will form the central nervous system of our connected lives and make it possible to transmit data more than 100 times faster than with the current 5G standard, while at the same time achieving higher energy efficiency, reliability and compliance with radiation protection limits.

TU Ilmenau is involved in two of the Federal Ministry of Education and Research's 6G Research Hubs: Open6GHub for research into modern communication networks and 6GEM for the development of mobile radio systemsof the next generation with a focus on energy efficiency and sustainable radiation protection.


Extremely powerful and reliable communication networks are essential for society in the digital revolution. In the Open6GHub project, coordinated by the German Research Center for Artificial Intelligence, 17 research partners are working on the development and implementation of intelligent communication networks and the next generation of mobile communications, 6G. The scientists are looking at application scenarios with very high demands on the quality and security of communication technology: highly networked production, new worlds of learning, personalized medicine and, above all, human interaction with a multitude of autonomous vehicles and devices. And 6G will also play a key role in energy policy in the future, for example when it comes to achieving sustainability through digitalization.

The new 6G system, based on artificial intelligence and machine learning, will be powerful and highly resilient to internal and external interference and ensure high availability of communication networks. In addition, the mobile, highly secure applications must also be energy-efficient, conserve resources and ensure the protection of personal data.

In the sub-project of TU Ilmenau "Joint Communication and Sensing with Distributed Infrastructure", scientists from the Department of Electronic Measurement and Signal Processing are working on integrating radar localization capabilities directly into the mobile network. Thus, the perception of moving objects and their surroundings can be achieved with a resource-saving technology, i.e. without additional frequency bands and with the existing infrastructure. Possible areas of application are road traffic, logistics or industrial automation. The "Joint-Communication-and-Sensing" technology will open up completely new applications of radio communication systems in daily life.


In the "6G Research Hub for Open, Efficient and Secure Mobile Radio Systems (6GEM)"11 research partners under the coordination of the Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule Aachen are developing a holistic 6G mobile radio system, from hardware to software, which offers a flexible network infrastructure. The goal is to achieve a system operation that is adaptable and resilient, while providing highest reliability and extremely low delay. The newly developed technologies are intended to enable applications such as safe road traffic, port logistics, intralogistics, rescue robotics and the digital operating room in a post-2030 society with the help of digital simulations.

In the Ilmenau sub-project 6GEMini "Concepts and Measures to Minimize Radiation Exposure of the Population", which is located at the Thüringer Innovationszentrum Mobilität (ThIMo), scientists from the Group of Radio Frequency and Microwave Engineering at TU Ilmenau are researching concepts and measures to minimize the electromagnetic radiation exposure associated with 6th generation mobile communications. The current public discussion about possible adverse health effects of the 5th generation of mobile radio shows, similar to the resistance in parts of the population to the extension of power lines, that a technology assessment has to be made as early as possible. If environmental compatibility aspects and technical possibilities for minimising radiation exposure are taken into account even before the new technology is rolled out nationwide, resistance in the population which could prove to be an obstacle to the introduction of the new technology will be counteracted in good time.




Prof. Dr.-Ing. Giovanni Del Galdo

Head of Group Electronic Measurement and Signal Processing
+49 3677 69-4280


Prof. Dr.-Ing. Reiner S. Thomä

Scientific Advisor Open6GHub
+49 3677 69-2622


Prof. Dr. Matthias Hein

Director Thüringer Innovationszentrum Mobilität
Head of Group High Frequency and Microwave Technology

+49 3677 69-2832