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Fujitsu employs AI to boost power efficiency in Open RAN service
Wed, 3rd Jan 2024

Fujitsu has employed artificial intelligence (AI) technology to successfully enhance its Virtuora Service Management and Orchestration (SMO) offering for Open RAN with a power-saving application.

Fujitsu announced that it had achieved over 20% power savings through accurate traffic estimates using machine learning and artificial intelligence and by switching network capacity on or off dynamically. This innovation was found to maintain service continuity optimally.

Through its AI-driven application, Fujitsu managed to estimate communication traffic for individual base stations down to an area of 100 square meters. Leveraging time series prediction technology, the application could make predictions based on users and terminals' location distribution data over time.

Quick selection of RU configuration delivering the maximal power-saving effect at any given period was also combined to enhance the optimization technologies.

The findings were reported from interoperability tests conducted in November 2023. Fujitsu and a third-party system-level RAN emulator compliant with the specifications provided by VIAVI Solutions, an American telecommunications network measurement equipment vendor, conducted the successful tests.

VIAVI's TeraVM RIC test, a comprehensive AI training enablement, test and measurement solution for validation of Open RAN RIC, xApps, and rApps using a containerised platform was also used during the tests.

The tests were carried out at the New Jersey, USA, at the COSMOS Lab at Rutgers University, one of two North American Open Testing and Integration Centers.

The laboratory also happened to be a host of part of the O-RAN ALLIANCE Global PlugFest Fall 2023, the international event where Fujitsu revealed the test results. The O-RAN ALLIANCE is expected to publish a PlugFest Virtual Showcase to provide more details in the future.

Leading corporations such as AT&T Communications were part of the assessment, participating as advisors and reviewing test items from both operational and operator perspectives. The interoperability tests entailed Fujitu’s Virtuora SMO offering multi-vendor end-to-end connectivity and interoperability.

They also performed power consumption testing of Virtuora SMO equipped with the power-saving application (rApp). The results demonstrated successful connectivity to third-party vendors’ RAN equipment. The tests also conducted under AT&T's evaluation confirmed the realization of power savings.

Moving into the future, Fujitsu states the company is committed to enhancing the multi-vendor Open RAN ecosystem globally. The firm continues to support telecommunication carriers' endeavours to reduce operation and maintenance costs and foster the development of new services. Moreover, it plans to help achieve carbon-neutral network operations through power-saving technologies.