Digital Twin – A Potential Technology for 5G Modelling and Planning

Rush hour in Hanoi in 2015 (credit: Reuters)

As the research team from Middlesex University (MDX), led by Prof. Huan Nguyen, are exploring the potential of Digital Twin for 5G networks, MDX has received a £210,000 Newton Fund grant and a £200,000 UKIERI grant for digital twin based research projects in partnership universities from Vietnam and India.

The projects are to develop a Digital Twin model for early detection of structural damage and automations in smart manufacturing. The team is also investigating the application of Digital Twin for 5G networks in channel modeling, test and validation, and 5G deployment planning.

The projects runs for two years each, will help improve quality of life for people in Vietnam and India and raise Middlesex’s research profile. It follows a Newton Fund-backed workshop in Hanoi in October involving British and Vietnamese academics, on the application of 5G technology to forecast accidents and manage traffic congestion, as part of the British Council-managed Researcher Links programme.

The delegation from Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology and Education visits Middlesex on January 16. Left to right: Benedikt Breuers (Partnerships Manager, MDX); Gurdip Binning (Head of International Recruitment, MDX); Professor Mehmet Karamanoglu (Head of Department, Design Engineering & Mathematics, MDX); Katie Bell (Chief Commercial Officer, MDX); Associate Professor Dr Le Hieu Giang (Vice President, HCMUTE); Ly Thien Trang (Director, International Education Exchange Centre, HCMUTE); Dr Huan Nguyen (Associate Professor, Faculty of Science & Technology, MDX) and Nguyen Hung Thai (Head of the Office of Finance & Planning, HCMUTE)

Meanwhile, a delegation from Ho Chi Minh City University of Technology and Education (HCMUTE) paid MDX a visit in January. The University, which shares Middlesex’s emphasis on real-world briefs and industry placements, established ties with MDX’s Mechatronics programme in 2015, when Dr Nguyen and a colleague visited on a tour of Vietnamese universities. As part of its strategy to expand in AI, Mechatronics and 5G, HCMUTE plans to increase the number of Mechatronics students progressing to MDX under the existing articulation agreement. Beyond that, there are hopes to develop further research collaborations.

Prof Huan Nguyen said, “We secured two grants to set up working on the very new area of digital twin modelling, which can reduce significantly the costs of instrumentation, maintenance and manufacturing in the Industry 4.0 and 5G era.”

“Through collaborations with Vietnamese and Indian universities ranging from capacity-building workshops and training activities to joint research projects, we can transfer research skills and advanced knowledge to help solve practical problems in Vietnam and India, from traffic jams to climate change to smart manufacturing. The potential for collaboration is huge, and already our partnerships are growing stronger and stronger.”