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Alliance for 5G Networks

The next generation of wireless communications technology will allow many more devices to send information much faster, making possible everything from virtual reality to driverless cars. NIST works with industry and academia to understand how those technologies behave, so next generation wireless networks can be deployed sooner and with a better user experience.


Propagation-Channel Measurements and Hardware Verification
NIST scientists with high-frequency switched array antenna system for systematic studies of behavior of 5G signals in different physical environments.

NIST launched the 5G mmWave Channel Model Alliance to accelerate the development and use of accurate measurements and models for next-generation communications technology. By bringing together researchers from multiple stakeholders—including communications technology companies, academia and government—NIST is accelerating 5G innovation.

The widespread use of 5G technologies is expected to produce $3.5 trillion in output and 22 million jobs globally by 2035. However, technical impediments still stand in the way. The high-frequency signals used by some 5G technologies are more likely to be affected by physical barriers such as walls or buildings. The communications industry needs accurate models and measurement techniques to better understand those effects. 

NIST’s establishment of the alliance has brought together more than 130 participants, including representatives from Qualcomm, Intel, Samsung, Keysight and Echostar, to solve the most pressing modeling and measurement challenges facing the deployment of 5G wireless communications. The output of NIST’s research and that of the alliance is being incorporated into the development of standards, specifications and best practices benefitting the entire industry.

Questions? Contact NIST Inquiries.