China Mobile Pakistan (Zong) and ZTE officially handed over and inaugurated the 4G Wireless Research Lab, donated last year in February, at Lahore University of Management Sciences (LUMS) on Friday, December 8, 2017. Housed at the Computer Science Department at the Syed Babar Ali School of Science and Engineering (SBASSE), this state-of-the-art facility will provide an opportunity to students to polish their academic endeavours on latest wireless network technology. The lab will be open to all kinds of innovations—not only supporting academic research but also accessible to relevant start-ups at the National Incubation Centre, also housed in the same building.
At the event, Dr. Zartash Afzal Uzmi, Associate Professor, Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science, SBASSE opened the ceremony, welcomed the guests and thanked them for the entire journey together for the 4G Wireless Research Lab.
Following this, Vice Chancellor LUMS, Prof. Dr. S. Sohail H. Naqvi took the stage and thanked the guests for the state-of-the-art facility. He said, “We certainly have the students, the faculty, the talent and now we have the partnership. It won’t be too far off when we will become the advanced R and D arm of Zong which is where universities should be placed. The Lab is a facility our people have worked very hard on. We appreciate your support in getting to this point and look forward to where we are headed together.”
The lab has broadband wireless equipment including a commercial base station to support teaching and research in the mobile and wireless networking systems at LUMS. The lab setup which was quite challenging yet rewarding, was completed with support from various departments at LUMS. The basic training for equipment operation has already been imparted; additional training of LUMS affiliates on the equipment will continue over time, as and when needed.
Dr. Tariq Mahmood Jadoon, Chair of Department of Electrical Engineering and Dr. Naveed Arshad, Chair of Department of Computer Sciences at SBASSE also spoke on the occasion. “Between Computer Sciences and Electrical Engineering, we have 10 faculty members working on the physical layer and the Internet of Things. It is a really exciting moment for all of us here at LUMS where we can carry out innovative experiments and necessary testing,” said Dr. Jadoon.
“The lab will provide a platform for carrying out mega projects in the area of telecommunications while supporting the current and future research of various faculty members, primarily in the Computer Science and Electrical Engineering departments,” added Dr. Zartash.
Important delegates from Zong/ZTE included, Faisal Nisar, Regional General Manager; Liu Hong Xing, ZTE Project Director; Muhammad Baibras, Senior Manager, CPBS; Fazal Rahman, Regional Manager, Corporate Sales, Chen Xin Wei, ZTE, Technical Director and Abdul Wahab, Assistant Manager, Marketing.
While talking about the importance of the 4G Wireless Research Lab at LUMS, Mr. Faisal Nisar, Regional General Manager, Zong said, “We are super excited that the MoU that was signed in the past is now concluded. In terms of Zong’s mission, we believe it is the pioneer 4G network and with this facility we have confidence that the youth will be really benefitting from this technology execution. We want to make sure that we provide the content and the apps and give the best data network to the people of Pakistan and this lab will be able to give back more technological updates. So thank you LUMS for providing this opportunity to Zong to provide the students an opening to learn and give back more to the country.”
Future expansion of the 4G Wireless Research Lab is already within the vision which includes state-of-the-art evolved packet core (EPC) components based on the up and coming network function virtualization (NFV) paradigm, which will be hosted within the lab.