A consortium of six leading UK universities researching the communications technologies of tomorrow

The Communications Hub for Empowering Distributed Cloud Computing Applications and Research (CHEDDAR) is a new hub dedicated to advancing future communications. Funded by the Engineering and Physical Sciences Research Council (EPSRC) – UK Research and Innovation (UKRI) via the Technology Missions Fund (TMF), CHEDDAR, alongside TITAN and HASC, represents pioneering platforms established to foster advancements in communication systems, and will serve to bridge connections across academia, business, and the global community.

Aims and vision

The evolution of future communications ecosystems represents a continuum spanning from the smallest devices to extensive cloud farms. Anticipated around 2030, international standards for 6G are poised to usher in a transformation from interconnected people and devices to interconnected intelligence. It is crucial for these technologies to underpin and be reinforced by communications infrastructures that are safe, secure, trustworthy, and sustainable.

CHEDDAR will explore how communications systems can underpin next generation computing and how cloud systems and AI can bolster communications. By leveraging UK expertise and innovative ideas, the Hub is investigating emerging computation and critical infrastructures with a cross-sector focus on end-users. CHEDDAR, in collaboration with the other two hubs, will contribute to building a unified research ecosystem that nurtures talent and explores ground-breaking ideas, specifically concentrating on 6G technologies facilitating the shift towards interconnected intelligence.

The CHEDDAR Hub is being led by Imperial College London, and its core partner universities include the Universities of Cranfield, Durham, Glasgow, Leeds, and York.

Research Themes

CHEDDAR strives to research, design, and derive proofs-of-concept of the 6G technologies that will support edge-fog-cloud continuum of computation through three thematic research pillars:

  1. Emergent systems: emergence, encompassing network embedded sensing & intelligence, and the support of emerging methods of computation from autonomy to quantum. Read more…
  2. Sustainable systems: sustainability of device, algorithms, data pipelines and service integration, green-by-design. Read more…
  3. Human-centric systems: human-centric design with trust, security, privacy, resilience, interpretability, transparency, and equitability. Read more…

The pillars are augmented by innovative blue-sky and pilot research projects, which are structured to encourage multi-partner collaboration, generating a substantial presence and impact in each research area (see our Research Themes pages for more details).

We categorise the challenge domains as:

    1. Critical Infrastructure: (including Grid, Transport, Water, Tracking/Logistics, Precision Agri, etc.) that bring safety and security requirements but also new demands due to high-interaction control/feedback loops and growing autonomy.
    2. There are new challenges to provide a compute continuum that network together; ground, maritime, air, and space computing capabilities providing on-demand edge computing.
    3. Increasing usage of robotics and the need for continuous monitoring of next generation manufacturing systems requires new ways of integrating different communications systems and time-engineered networks where determinism is a key requirement.
    4. Health and Medical technologies add the conflicting requirements of mobility, safety, security, and privacy as well as increasing demands for bandwidth, edge processing and flow management.