NEC Corporation announced today that it has successfully demonstrated a series of Open RAN integrations in the new O-RAN ALLIANCE Global PlugFest Fall 2022 (o-ran.org), across three of its venues hosted by leading operators and the new Telecom Infra Project (TIP) (telecominfraproject.com). O-RAN ALLIANCE PlugFests are designed to demonstrate the functionality as well as the multi-vendor interoperability of O-RAN-based network equipment while serving as a testing ground for advanced O-RAN operators to gauge the maturity of Open RAN.
NEC's demonstrations included its 4G/5G converged core, Near-Real-Time RIC and Non-Real-Time RIC (via its subsidiary, Netcracker). NEC and its recently acquired subsidiary Aspire also developed and deployed an Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning (AI/ML)-powered rApp based on anomaly detection in partnership with VMware.
NEC is a leading Open RAN provider recognized for its comprehensive suite of solutions, services, and system integration (SI) capabilities called NEC Open Networks. It works closely with a large community of like-minded vendors and organizations, including the O-RAN ALLIANCE, Open RAN Policy Coalition, and the Telecom Infra Project, to develop truly open standards for RAN and the ecosystems that surround them. The company has joined other vendors in proof of concepts worldwide and recently became the first vendor to be awarded TIP's "Requirements Compliant Bronze Badge" for twelve 5G Open RAN Radio Units in accordance with the latest published TIP Requirements 2.1. Additionally, NEC was also awarded TIP's "Requirements Compliant Ribbon" for its three 5G massive MIMO Open RAN Radio Units in March 2022. The company's work with TIP further underscores its commitment to innovating and creating a rich and open ecosystem of Open RAN-compliant products.
NEC, Netcracker, and Aspire participated in the following O-RAN ALLIANCE Global PlugFest venues:
PlugFest in Japan
NEC demonstrated an end-to-end integration that depicted the flow of the messages across different layers/components of the O-RAN domain. The three-way integration was implemented between HCLTech xApp, NEC's Near-Real-Time RIC Platform, and VIAVI's new TeraVM RIC Test (viavisolutions.com). HCLTech Bouncer xApp, in combination with VIAVI's TeraVM RIC Test, helped benchmark the underlying Near-Real-Time RIC platform using E2AP Global and Functional procedures, while NEC's Near-Real-Time RIC Platform enabled third party xApp integrations and connected with multi-vendor E2 nodes.
The Multi-Vendor Near-Real-Time RIC/RAN/xApp integration was successfully showcased in the O-RAN ALLIANCE's vision.
PlugFest in North America hosted by UNH-IOL
At the USA PlugFest, which was hosted by AT&T and DISH, NEC presented its 4G/5G Converged Mobile Packet Core, which is an interoperable 3GPP Standard-compliant system. It is a fully cloud-native solution with an industry-leading high-performance software-based User Plane Function (UPF) at the edge for enabling low latency use cases.
NEC's 4G/5G Converged Core supports multi-cloud in flexible deployment scenarios, including as a container on virtual machines (VM) or baremetal, hybrid (private and public cloud), and multi-vendor ecosystems. The test successfully demonstrated how a Converged Core is easily implemented with best-of-breed products while having minimum impact on existing operations and creating vital resource efficiency and cost reductions.
Joint European O-RAN & TIP PlugFest Fall 2022
Netcracker deployed its Non-Real-Time RIC, a key component of NEC/Netcracker's Open RAN Domain Orchestration solution, in Berlin i14y Lab, part of the Joint European PlugFest hosted by Deutsche Telekom, EANTC, and Vodafone. Two rApps were successfully validated:
1). Mobility robustness optimization, which automatically detects and corrects errors in the mobility configuration.
2). KPI validation which continuously checks KPIs and provides automatic rollback capabilities in case KPIs are degraded.
By using both rApps together, target KPIs can be maintained without human intervention with a real-time closed-loop automation approach.
Also, Aspire successfully developed and deployed an rApp for anomaly detection at the O-RAN Global PlugFest Fall 2022 in the same Berlin i14y Lab. The AI/ML- powered rApp was developed and deployed in partnership with VMware bringing its VMware Centralized RIC platform. Aspire demonstrated the need to centralize intelligence for fault detection and resolution.
“NEC is committed to the principles of Open RAN because we believe it gives network operators the best chance to capitalize on the enormous promise of 5G," said Alla Goldner, Director of Open Standards Strategy at NEC. “This commitment means working openly with operators, vendors, industry bodies, and even competitors to help overcome the challenges of Open RAN and bring operators into the cloud-native world with no compromise on performance or quality."
About NEC Corporation
NEC Corporation (nec.com) has established itself as a leader in the integration of IT and network technologies while promoting the brand statement of “Orchestrating a brighter world.” NEC enables businesses and communities to adapt to rapid changes taking place in both society and the market as it provides for the social values of safety, security, fairness and efficiency to promote a more sustainable world where everyone has the chance to reach their full potential.
NEC is a registered trademark of NEC Corporation. All Rights Reserved. Other product or service marks mentioned herein are the trademarks of their respective owners. ©2022 NEC Corporation.