IEEE International Symposium on Local and Metropolitan Area Networks
13-14 July 2020 // Virtual Conference

Invited Talks

Invited Talk 1: Conquering the Terahertz Band

Monday, July 13 2020 11:10 ET

Josep M. Jornet (Northeastern University)


The need for higher data-rates and more ubiquitous connectivity for an ever-increasing number of wirelessly connected devices motivates the exploration of uncharted spectral bands. In this context, Terahertz (THz)-band (0.1–10 THz) communication is envisioned as a key wireless technology of the next decade. The very large bandwidth available at THz frequencies (tens to hundreds of consecutive GHz) can alleviate the spectrum scarcity problem while enabling wireless Terabit-per-second (Tb/s) links in personal and local area networks, backhaul for urban and rural areas, and even space networks. Moreover, the very small size of THz transceivers and antennas (submillimetric at THz frequencies) leads to miniature communication devices with applications in wireless networks on chip, wireless nanosensor networks and the Internet of Nano-Things, to name a few. Nevertheless, there are several roadblocks that need to be overcome to tap in the THz band, ranging from the lack of high-power THz sources, high sensitivity detectors and steerable directional antenna systems, to advanced signal processing, communication and networking techniques that can make the most of the ultra-broadband THz channel while overcoming the challenging propagation characteristics of THz waves. In this talk, the state of the art and open challenges to enable THz communication systems will be presented, with a special emphasis on innovative platforms for experimental THz research.


Josep M. Jornet is an Associate Professor in the Department of Electrical and Computer Engineering, the Director of the Ultrabroadband Nanonetworking Laboratory and a member of the Institute for the Wireless Internet of Things at Northeastern University, in Boston, MA. He received the B.S. in Telecommunication Engineering and the M.Sc. in Information and Communication Technologies from the Universitat Politecnica de Catalunya, Barcelona, Spain, in 2008. He received the Ph.D. degree in Electrical and Computer Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology, Atlanta, GA, in 2013. From August 2013 and August 2019, he was an Assistant Professor with the Department of Electrical Engineering at the University at Buffalo, The State University of New York. His current research interests are in Terahertz-band communication networks, Wireless Nano-bio-communication Networks and the Internet of Nano-Things. In these areas, he has co-authored more than 140 peer-reviewed scientific publications, 1 book, and has also been granted 3 US patents, which accumulate over 7,700 citations (h-index of 40) as of June 2020. He is serving as the lead PI on multiple grants from U.S. federal agencies including the National Science Foundation, the Air Force Office of Scientific Research and the the Air Force Research Laboratory. He is a recipient of the National Science Foundation CAREER award and of several other awards from IEEE, ACM and UB.

Invited Talk 2: Convergence, cross-disciplinary research and wireless networking

Monday, July 13 2020 13:30 ET

Thyagarajan Nandagopal (NSF)


Wireless networks are increasingly a crucial component of every aspect of modern society. As they become more integrated with our daily lives, interesting cross-disciplinary problems are coming to light. In this talk, we will look at a few such intersections of wireless networking with other practical domains, identify the research problems and opportunities. These opportunities also serve to advance the state of the art in wireless networking.


Dr. Thyaga Nandagopal is the Deputy Division Director of the Computing and Communication Foundations (CCF) Division in the Directorate of Computer & Information Science and Engineering (CISE) at the National Science Foundation. In this role, he oversees the division’s investments in the theory and foundations of computing systems and communications technologies, with an annual budget of nearly $200M. He previously served as a Program Director at the NSF in the Networking Technologies and Systems (NeTS) program, where he managed mobile systems and wireless networking research across multiple funding programs with an annual budget of over $50M. At NSF, Thyaga is also leading the Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research program, a $100M effort over the 2017 – 2024 timeframe. He serves as the co-chair of the Wireless Spectrum Research and Development Senior Steering Group (WSRD SSG), which co-ordinates spectrum-related research and development activities across the Federal government. Dr. Nandagopal is also a co-chair of the NSF-wide Quantum Leap Steering Committee, that coordinates NSF investments in inter-disciplinary research in quantum computing, communications and sensing. He is an IEEE Fellow, and holds a Ph.D. degree in Electrical Engineering from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Invited Talk 3: Direct Air-Water Communication with Laser Light

Tuesday, July 14 2020 13:30 ET

Xia Zhou (Dartmouth College)


Air-water communication is fundamental for efficient underwater operations, such as environmental monitoring, surveying, or coordinating of heterogeneous aerial and underwater systems. Existing wireless techniques, however, mostly focus on a single physical medium and fall short in achieving high- bandwidth bidirectional communication across the air-water interface.

In this talk, I will describe our latest effort in exploiting the use of laser light to enable a bidirectional, direct air-water communication link. I will focus on our design elements that overcome full-hemisphere laser steering with portable hardware, handle strong ambient light outdoors, and adapt to dynamics of water waves. I will present our experimental results examining both link performance and robustness, and conclude with open challenges and ongoing work.


Xia Zhou is an Associate Professor in the Department of Computer Science at Dartmouth College, where she co-direct the Dartmouth Networking and Ubiquitous (DartNets) Laboratory and Dartmouth Reality and Robotics Lab (RLab). Her research interests lie broadly in mobile computing with recent focuses on light based communication and sensing, mobile sensing, and human-computer interactions. She is a recipient of the Presidential Early Career Award (PECASE) in 2019, SIGMOBILE RockStar Award in 2019, the Karen E. Wetterhahn Memorial Award for Distinguished Creative and Scholarly Achievement in 2018 and named as N2Women: Rising Stars in Networking and Communication in 2017. She has also won the Sloan Research Fellowship in 2017, NSF CAREER Award in 2016, and Google Faculty Research Award in 2014. She received her PhD at UC Santa Barbara in 2013 and MS at Peking University in 2007.