Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST)

Senior Engineer Position in the field of LPWAN protocol optimization for integration with satellites (M/F)

Luxembourg Institute of Science and Technology (LIST)

Esch-sur-Alzette, Luxembourg

Context of intervention

As part of a Research and Technology Organization (RTO), the work of the Environmental Research and Innovation (ERIN) Department tackles some of the major environmental challenges our society is facing today, such as climate change mitigation, ecosystem resilience, sustainable energy systems, the efficient use of renewable resources, and environmental pollution prevention and control. To this end, the mission of the ERIN department is:

(1) To conduct impact-driven scientific research and development, as well as technological innovation
(2) To support companies in the implementation of new environmental regulations and advise governments on determining sustainable policies for the future with the objectives of:

  • Analysing, managing and exploiting sustainable resources (water, air, soil, renewable energy, bioresources)
  • Reducing the environmental impact of human consumption and production activities

Connecting terrestrial LPWANs (Low Power Wide Area Networks) directly to Internet of Things (IoT) service back end via satellite broadband is becoming a new business focus. Besides the new market opportunities, in the agriculture sector, among others, and the additional revenue that the backhaul of LPWANs can bring for satellite operators and IoT services providers, there is still a lack of technical solutions that allow the smooth integration and interoperability of satellite and terrestrial segments. The LoRaSAT project, funded by FNR, under the CORE2019 call, aims at designing optimisation of the LoRaWAN medium access (MAC) protocol, combining unidirectional and bidirectional communication, simple Aloha channel access with resource scheduling techniques, according to IoT traffic pattern, and application requirements. The designed e2e system and the proposed optimisations aim to enable better data extraction, exchange and management with immediate impact on precision agriculture applications such as crop growth monitoring and disease prediction, productivity through enhanced yields, and reduced use of fuel and fertilisers.

Description

The Senior Engineer is incorporated in the Remote Sensing and Natural Resources Modelling  group and will work in close collaboration with the FNR CORE LoRaSAT PI (Dr. Maria Rita Palattella), The selected applicant will be the internal specialist of the LPWAN, LoRaWAN  technology and will be expected to provide unique solutions combining LPWAN, with other IoT technologies, and satellite connectivity in several application use cases (smart agriculture, environmental monitoring, etc.).

Main missions

The Senior Engineer’s main missions will be to:

  • Perform analytical and development work in the framework of the CORE LoRaSAT project
  • Propose enhancements of LoRaWAN MAC protocol for gateways selection when they communicate with a remote server over a GEO satellite link
  • Ensure the timely exchange of the data over the e2e LPWAN-satellite system
  • Study optimisation of application IoT protocols (CoAP, MQTT, etc.), running on top of LoRaWAN MAC
  • Set-up a simulation/emulation environment, and PoCs, to demonstrate the improved performance achievable with the proposed optimisations

The applicant is expected to work autonomously in managing her/his tasks, toward the achievement of the project objectives.

Other expected contributions

  • Design, develop, adapt hardware (HW) and software (SW), tools for testing, analysing and measurement
  • Define an end-to-end integrated LPWAN-satellite system architecture, propose  LoRaWAN protocols optimisations, and cross-layer optimisations,  comply with the RDI LoRaSAT project requirements
  • Understand the LoRaSAT research topic (integration of LPWAN with satellite), be able to articulate with the existing state of the art solutions and consequences of developments/improvements
  • Carry out analysis and experiments (definition, carry-out, interpretation, documentation and drafting of technical/analytical reports)
  • Intervene in the field in a professional manner when required
  • Contribute to the definition of new  projects related to LPWAN technology. Pro-actively contribute to the acquisition of funding (FNR, H2020, ESA, etc.) to develop technical expertise

Project management

  • Manage work packages of the LoRaSAT Work Plan, for which she/he is responsible
  • Ensure project follow-up and documentation
  • Report internally and/or externally according to his/her contribution
  • Be responsible for the realisation of the LoRaSAT deliverables in the expected time frame

Follow-up of equipment

  • Participate in the preparation, calibration and upgrade of LoRa/LoRaWAN equipment
  • Coordinate preventive and corrective maintenance interventions
  • Play a key-role in the maintenance and development of state-of-the-art LPWAN laboratory/field facilities and equipment to support the LoRaSAT activities

Dissemination, valorisation and transfer

  • Draft patents, licences, reports, scientific articles or other documents
  • Define proofs of concepts and develop prototypes
  • Get involve into standardisation activities at IETF (in particular in LPWAN WG)

Partnerships and networks

  • Pro-actively contribute to the development of partnerships and networks at a national and international level in the field of IoT, LPWAN, LoRaWAN, integrated IoT-satellite networks

Training and supervision

  • Keep abreast of his/her engineering field and the related technology developments
  • Attend conferences, continuous trainings, readings
  • Train on new techniques, IoT devices, 5G technologies
  • Give guidance to more junior engineering and other members of the LoRaSAT team
  • Actively train undergraduate students (PhD student, master students, etc.)

Profile

Education

  • Master Degree in Computer Science, Telecommunications, Electrical Engineering or related field

Required seniority

  • Long-term (5-10 years) proven expertise (thorough SW development, testbed set up, patents, scientific publications, etc.) in low power wireless networks (mesh networks, WSNs), Internet of Things (IoT), and Long-range low Power Wide Area Networks (LPWANs)
  • Long term experience with IoT PoC, demo, testbeds

Competencies

  • Good knowledge of networking concepts, Internet of Things protocols
  • Good programming skills (C/Python/Java, etc.)
  • Web  development skills (server side, JavaScript, PHP, HTML, etc.)
  • General understanding of software quality and project management tools (Git, GitHub, etc.)
  • Embedded programming experience, ideally involving low power wireless devices (LoRa devices, Raspberry Pi)
  • Basic knowledge of satellite communication systems 

Language

  • English is mandatory
  • French or German will be considered as an asset

Contact

Candidates interested in the above position can apply online on our website www.list.lu
The application file should include:

  • A CV
  • A motivation letter
  • The names of two or three referees
  • A list of publications, invited talks, patents, and granted projects

Please apply via recruiter’s website.

Quote Reference: ERIN-2020-005