- – Joint workshop of the two communities took place on November 14-15 in Boston
- – Members of both communities agreed to work closely on the open-source implementation of O-RAN, including SMO, O-Cloud, and other open-source RAN functions
- – Open-source software plays an important role in supporting companies in the development, testing, and integration of their commercial open and intelligent RAN solutions
Burlington, Massachusetts, United States, and Bonn, Germany, December 14, 2023 – The O-RAN ALLIANCE, the O-RAN Software Community (OSC) and the OpenAirInterface Software Alliance (OSA) communities joined hands to hold the “Joint OSC/OSFG-OAI Workshop: End-to-End Reference Designs for O-RAN” in collaboration with the Institute for the Wireless Internet of Things at Northeastern University. This two-day workshop took place on November 14-15, 2023 at the Innovation Campus in Burlington, MA.
Open-source software plays an important role in supporting companies in the development, testing, and integration of their commercial open and intelligent RAN solutions. This timely event was organized to unite open-source communities to establish a collaborative roadmap for delivering open-source reference designs. The workshop accomplished its objective of coordinating the work of multiple open-source communities in rolling out end-to-end reference showcases of the O-RAN technology as they are expected to deploy and operate in the field. End-to-end showcases are designed to be continuously integrated, deployed, and tested systems in several open labs around the world that demonstrate all aspects of O-RAN.
The main outcomes of the workshop include:
- Members of both communities agreed to work closely on the open-source deployment of O-RAN including Service Management and Orchestration (SMO), O-Cloud components, and other open-source network functions
- Workshop participants agreed on collaboration on interfaces between O-RAN components developed in each open source community, such as between OAI’s O-CU, OSC’s O-DU-high, and OAI’s O-DU-low
- The event featured recent demos of O-RAN functionality, including O1, A1, and E2 interfaces, SMO, policy management, Near-RT RIC implementations, and xApps
- Workshop participants also agreed to interconnect OSC open labs, OAI lab, and selected Open Testing and Integration Centre (OTIC) labs to enhance day-to-day collaboration.
O-RAN ALLIANCE has been specifying the O-RAN Architecture for almost six years and the industry has been gradually adopting this technology. In alignment with the O-RAN specifications, there has also been a significant amount of design work in the open-source communities notably the O-RAN Software Community (OSC) and OpenAirInterface (OAI).
“The members of the two communities gathered at this event to reflect on the roadmap of the O-RAN reference designs in open source, particularly to roll out end-to-end showcases of the entire O-RAN stack,” said Irfan Ghauri, Director of Operations at the OpenAirInterface Software Alliance. “Continuous integration, deployment as well as testing are the most challenging aspects of a showcase that serves the needs of researchers and industry alike. Further burning questions like O-CLOUD reference architecture were also important topics that were addressed at this event.”
“I was impressed by how the academia, government, and open source ecosystem players came together with the OAI, OSC, and Northeastern University during these workshops,” said David Kinsey, O-RAN Software Community Technical Oversight Committee co-chair. “Identifying complementary roles in the source code community and implementations of open RAN specifications will help us accelerate the realization of open RAN.”
“O-RAN ALLIANCE fully supports cooperation among software communities to boost the progress of open software development,” said Chih-Lin I, Co-chair of O-RAN ALLIANCE Technical Steering Committee and China Mobile Chief Scientist, Wireless Technologies, China Mobile Research Institute. “Offering open source software helps the industry in commercialization of O-RAN products, fulfilling O-RAN ALLIANCE’s mission of transforming the RAN to be more open, intelligent, virtualized and interoperable.”
About OpenAirInterface Software Alliance (OSA):
The OSA was founded in 2014 by EURECOM, a research institute in the South of France. The Alliance manages and promotes OpenAirInterface (OAI) open-source software that offers 4G and 5G as well as Core Network stacks. Recently, agile service platforms under the label MOSAIC5G have also been added to the set of OSA’s offerings. The OAI software is used by many different organizations across the world for purposes of research and testing as well as for building blocks of systems for different 4G/5G use cases, a growing number of them industrial. Today, AMD, Firecell, Fujitsu, InterDigital, NI, Nokia Bell Labs, NVIDIA, Orange, PAWR, Qualcomm, Sequans Communications, and Vodafone are represented on the Board of Directors of the OSA as Strategic Members. For more information, please visit www.openairinterface.org.
About O-RAN ALLIANCE
The O-RAN ALLIANCE is a worldwide community of more than 300 mobile operators, vendors, and research & academic institutions operating in the Radio Access Network (RAN) industry. As the RAN is an essential part of any mobile network, the O-RAN ALLIANCE’s mission is to reshape the industry towards more intelligent, open, virtualized, and fully interoperable mobile networks. The new O-RAN specifications enable a more competitive and vibrant RAN supplier ecosystem with faster innovation to improve user experience. O-RAN-based mobile networks at the same time improve the efficiency of RAN deployments as well as operations by mobile operators. To achieve this, the O-RAN ALLIANCE publishes new RAN specifications, releases open software for the RAN and supports its members in the integration and testing of their implementations. For more information, please visit www.o-ran.org.