VMware has announced a partnership with Mitacs, a non-profit organization that connects industry with Canadian academic institutions, and launched its Digital Equity Grid Innovation initiative, also known as TETRA.
The initiative, aligned with VMware’s Automated Life vision, aims to advance applied research that will play a critical role in paving a sustainable path for 6G. In addition, the organizations plan to establish a TETRA research & innovation (R&I) center in Montreal, in partnership with the IEEE Future Networks Initiative (FNI), a technical community of IEEE, the world’s largest technical professional organization advancing technology for the benefit of humanity. TETRA and FNI will collaborate on solutions to bridge the digital divide.
“The path to 6G requires a fundamental rearchitecting of the Internet to an Open Grid – one that can be accessed from everywhere and brings immersive apps to everyone,” said Kit Colbert, CTO, VMware. “This calls for significant advancement of physical and digital systems through broad partnerships and true cross-sector collaboration. Our partnership with Mitacs aims to drive this advancement forward, keeping sustainability and digital equity at the heart of our work.”
Initial applied research projects will focus in the areas of:
Sustainable Grid: Create a sustainable Open Grid with an international research team to enable access to a global pool of physical, digital, and biological resources to solve the unsolved.
Digital Equity: Address the digital divide with practical and novel solutions, in partnership with IEEE, to connect the unconnected and ensure everyone can reap benefits of the digital society.
Clean Tech: Contribute to a better environment for the planet in accordance with Environmental, Social and Governance (ESG) goals included in the VMware 2030 Agenda.
John Hepburn, CEO of Mitacs, said, “Connecting rural, remote, and Indigenous communities is critical to driving innovation in every part of Canada. Mitacs is thrilled to be collaborating with VMware as part of the Digital Equity Grid Innovation initiative. This initiative will improve connectivity; enable local, national, and international research collaboration; and support the development of an innovation ecosystem that leverages local strengths. We look forward to seeing where this partnership can take us.”
VMware, Mitacs and IEEE FNI also plan to establish an R&I center in Montreal where researchers will develop Open Grid infrastructure that bridges technologies from the satellite, wireless, networks and cloud industries. This infrastructure platform will serve as the application development platform for IEEE Future Networks Initiative’s Connecting the Unconnected Challenge, which seeks novel solutions for universal and affordable internet access. In addition, researchers will be able to test solutions in real-world environments via Open Grid Alliance Innovation Zones and IEEE FNI testbeds.
“Nearly half of the world’s population is still not connected to the Internet, but the Internet is a critical access point to education, economic opportunity, and health information and services. IEEE is excited to leverage our Connecting the Unconnected Challenge program to provide an innovation and a broad talent pipeline to the TETRA pilot project. This partnership provides the perfect framework to focus the expertise of our global member network on this critical humanitarian issue,” said Mary Ward-Callan, Managing Director, Technical Activities, IEEE.
The Honorable François-Philippe Champagne, Minister of Innovation, Science and Industry of Canada, said, “Canada is home to some of the best and brightest minds in emerging areas of technology like automated intelligence, machine learning and spatial computing. Thanks to VMware’s confidence in Canada, this investment will support our great talent and help solve some important challenges facing our society in the decades to come.”