FLAVIA fosters the transformation of wireless devices and protocol stacks from monolithic closed boxes offering fixed and pre-established link-layer services to highly modular devices and protocol suites. FLAVIA is meant to i) expose configuration and programming interfaces at the various levels of the wireless protocol stack (i.e. not restricted to the SAP MAC interface, but offering functionalities for supporting services and mechanisms which require a cross-layer support), ii) provide highly modular frameworks where reconfiguration of the device operation may be easily achieved by changing just one or a small set of modules, and iii) devise new specific modules to enhance the functional capabilities of existing wireless technologies.

To match this vision, FLAVIA scientific and technical approach focuses on two major strategic research areas: the design of FLAVIA components and architecture in terms of modules and interfaces, and the design of solutions and scenarios that contribute to, and/or exploit, the flexibility and programmability provided by the modules and interfaces. The project strategy is exploded in the figure below.

The FLAVIA strategic workplan activity flow

WP1 Project Management

This WP deploys the activities devised to assist the project in its day-to-day evolution. These activities include administrative management, technical management, and Project Office tasks. Administrative management activities are devised to organise and manage the overall project while the Technical management activities are related to the inter-WP coordination and day to day technical assistance to WP activities. These activities include the assessment, evaluation and reporting of project results, the continuous monitoring of the WP progresses, the enforcement of technical quality and consistency of intermediate reports and the integration of each WP contribution.


WP2 Requirements and Architecture

WP2 has the fundamental role of deriving requirements for our new architectural vision, to split functionalities across components and to identify the suited interfaces: generally speaking the present WP is in charge of the FLAVIA’s design from an holistic point of view, i.e., with the goal of guaranteeing proper integration and interfacing among components. WP2 activities are organized into two tasks: the first focussed on the scenario and requirements definition and the second dedicated to the design of the overall FLAVIA Architecture.


WP3 Specification and prototyping of 802.16 modules and programming interfaces

The goal of this WP is to suggest a generic open 802.16 based MAC design, which will provide a flexible platform for testing, experimenting algorithms, and evaluating enhancements to state of the art 802.16 protocols as well as novel schemes and protocols in the scope of scheduled access wireless networks (e.g., 802.16e, 802.16m, LTE).


WP4 Specification and prototyping of 802.11 modules and programming interfaces

The main objective of this work-package is to devise a programmable MAC framework leveraging the existing 802.11 technology. This will be accomplished by evolving the design of an 802.11 device to explicitly expose an application programming interface able to define and control the MAC protocol operation. The work will be based first on consortium’s expertise in 802.11 extensions, both standardized (e.g. 802.11e, 802.11n), in the process of standardization (e.g. 802.11s Mesh extensions) or proposed in academic literature (e.g. multi-channel MAC solutions, MAC layer measurement and control); second on the requirements and architecture work- package inputs that will guide the design of the APIs and provide concrete use cases.


WP5 Innovative approaches for enhancing scheduled system performance

In this WP, we will give examples of procedures and techniques that can utilize the flexibility, scalability, and upgradability of the FLAVIA platform, in the frame of centralized systems which make use of scheduled access schemes. The work includes the evaluation and extension of standard enhancements, the definition and identification of Solutions for intra-cell novel scheduling schemes and for inter-cell interference coordination.


WP6 Innovative approaches for enhanced contention-based systems

In this WP, we will give examples of procedures and techniques that can utilize the flexibility, scalability, and upgradability of the FLAVIA platform, in the frame of distributed systems which make use of contention-based access schemes. The work is focused onto the Evaluation and extensions of standard functionalities and on the definition of solutions for enhanced and flexible PHY and for multihop and multi-channel communication.


WP7 Integration, Validation and Trials

WP7 focuses on the validation of the FLAVIA architecture for natively supporting coexistence of multiple customized stacks and interoperability of multi-channel and multi-technology nodes. To this purpose, we will refer to specific trials, focused on the integration of the components prototyped within WP3 and WP4, and on the performance evaluation of the most promising and appropriate innovative solutions identified in WP5 and WP6.


WP8 Dissemination, Standardization, Exploitation and LTE applicability assessment.

The aim of WP8 is to cover the dissemination, standardization and exploitation of the technical activities. Due to the highly innovative FLAVIA concept, the dissemination activities will be organized in order to maximize the impact on both currently available technologies, and technologies whose standardization is still in progress. Since impact on 802.16 and 802.11 technology is also supported by WP3 and WP4 activities (which are dedicated to 802.16 and 802.11 prototyping according to the FLAVIA vision), we dedicate a specific exploitation task to the analysis of FLAVIA impact on emerging technologies and primarily on LTE.