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NYU’s Polytechnic Institute Leads Telecom Research

The Center for Advanced Technology in Telecommunications (CATT) at the Polytechnic Institute of New York University is a Research and Development hub focused on advancements in Internet, wireless, cyber-security, and multimedia communications. Now in operation for over 25 years, CATT draws on annual funding from the New York State Foundation for Science, Technology and Innovation (NYSTAR) and has been successful in programs funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and the New York State Energy and Research Development Authority (NYSERDA). CATT has also collaborated with state and city agencies to create incubator programs in New York City specifically aimed at developments in Clean and Renewable Energy and next-generation technologies.

Current Research

Cooperative Communications
This November, one of CATT’s members, Elza Erkip, a Computer Engineering professor, was awarded a multi-year $700,000 grant from NSF to conduct research in expanding cooperative networking. His goal is to increase the speed and reliability of wireless networks and eventually make them as reliable as electrical outlets so that there are no gaps in voice or data service.

Having multiple users restricts wireless communications systems since they share limited bandwidth, causing systems to suffer from distortion and interference. The team is hoping to develop wireless cooperation between multiple terminals, so that information can be transmitted more efficiently. By redistributing network resources, including energy and bandwidth, advanced cooperative communications are more adaptable than current systems and stand to make significant improvements in large wireless networks.

In addition to the value of developing advanced wireless networking technologies, the program exposes students from New York University’s engineering and business schools to a field that is in high demand, a valuable opportunity at an early stage of their careers.

Infection Detection
Professor Nasir Memon, Computer Science and Engineering Professor at Polytechnic, is currently conducting research with students on what they are calling ‘infection detection’ systems. Through CATT, and with NSF and NYSTAR seed funding, Professor Memon started Vivic Networks to conduct work on the quick detection of compromised systems. In spite of current protections, including spam filters, anti-virus protection, firewalls and intrusion detectors, systems are still vulnerable to compromising activity. Infection detection seeks to identify a compromise quickly by monitoring key symptoms that can raise potential flags.

Memon and his team have added an entrepreneurial element to their work, creating Vivic Networks, a company that plans to transfer the research into a commercial product for the marketplace. Vivic will allow the researchers to offer infection detection to all networks, including banking and defense systems, providing improvements to asset protection for a variety of needs.

Focus Areas
Cyber Security
Over the past several years, CATT has received over $7 million in external funding, including a $1.6 million grant from NYSTAR to expand a cyber-crime initiative. CATT’s research has led to the establishment of a National Security Agency Center of Excellence for Information Assurance Education and Research.
• Wireless Networks
Polytechnic works in collaboration with Auburn University, the University of Virginia, and Virginia Polytechnic Institute (Virginia Tech) and has taken part in creating the Wireless Internet Center for Advanced Technology (WICAT), which is an Industry/University Cooperative Research Center (I/UCRC). WICAT has worked with Motorola, Verizon and startups on Radio Frequency Identification and wireless device location technologies.
• Media / Network Applications
The media and network groups are conducting research in storage networks, Web search tools, network management and peer-to-peer (P2P) applications.

Incubator Programs
• Brooklyn Enterprise on Science and Technology (BEST)
• 160 Varick Street
• New York City Accelerator for a Clean and Renewable Economy (NYC ACRE)

Patents and Disclosures
• Nasir Memon, Husrev Taha Sencar, Kulesh Shanmugasundaram, Network-Based Infection Detection Using Host Slowdown, U.S. Publication No. US20090126019, Filed 2/26/2008
• Shivendra S. Panwar, Pei Liu, Zhifeng Tao, Cooperative Wireless Communications, U.S. Patent No. US7330457, Issued 2/12/2008
• Yihan Li, Shivendra S. Panwar and H. Jonathan Chao, Arbitration Using Dual Round Robin Matching with Exhaustive Service of Winning Virtual Output Queue, U.S. Patent No. US7203202, Issued 4/10/2007

Funding Sources / Associate Members
• National Science Foundation (NSF)
• United States Army Space and Terrestrial Communications Directorate
• New York State Energy and Research Development Authority (NYSERDA)
• New York State Foundation for Science, Technology and Innovation (NYSTAR)
• New York City Department of Information Technology and Telecommunication (DoITT)