Tuesday, October 26, 2021

PAWR Project demos O-RAN slicing

The Platforms for Advanced Wireless Research (PAWR) Project is demonstrating radio access network (RAN) slicing in an open RAN environment at this week's  Mobile World Congress (MWC) Los Angeles.

The demo shows a RAN slicing application in coordination with a near-real-time RAN Intelligent Controller (Cherry and Dawn release have been tested) and implemented on an end-to-end open source platform. With a POWDER-developed xApp linking to a RAN slicing manager, the team illustrates how the RAN slicer makes it possible to allocate resources dynamically, creating custom network slices that attach to targeted base stations and user endpoints.

“We are excited to give the industry a look at what’s possible in an open, programmable network setting,” said Kobus Van der Merwe, Associate Professor at the University of Utah and Principal Investigator on the POWDER testbed. “To our knowledge, our work represents the first effort to combine an open RAN framework with an open source mobility stack, providing a top-to-bottom RAN application in a realistic wireless environment.”

The PAWR program is funded by the National Science Foundation (NSF) and an industry consortium of 35 leading wireless companies. It is managed by the PAWR Project Office, which is co-led by nonprofit US Ignite and Northeastern University. In addition to POWDER, platforms in the PAWR program include COSMOS in New York City, AERPAW in the Research Triangle area of North Carolina, and ARA, a newly-named rural broadband testbed in Ames, Iowa.