PRESS RELEASE: 5G is being deployed and widely used on a large scale around the world, and the demand for computing power is exploding, resulting in continuous growth of network traffic, a sharp increase in energy consumption, and low resource efficiency. Wang Quan, Vice President of ZTE, introduced ZTE’s core network innovations on “energy saving” and “efficiency improvement”, as well as practice of enabling green transformation of industries.

  1. What can the core network contribute to ICT green transformation and what challenges does it face?

Quoting from the report of GSMA intelligence, the core network takes about 13% of total power consumption in the whole system, it might not be much, but with the whole industry going virtualized, core network, as well as applications, everything can be software based, which makes the cloud infrastructure more important than ever, especially in the green track. As the brain of the whole network, the core network will play a key role in the green transformation of cloud infrastructure even the whole ICT industry, so, the research of energy-saving technologies of core network is indispensable.

On the one hand, core network itself needs to implement energy saving and emission reduction. Due to the variety and quantity of NFs in the core network and scattered deployment, there is a large amount of resource redundancy. In addition, tidal phenomena of services has a great impact on resource utilization. Therefore, reducing resource redundancy and improving resource efficiency are the major challenges of building a green core network. On the other hand, core network needs to act as the core brain and collaborate with other network domains to empower different industries and reduce consumption.

  1. How does ZTE’s core network implement green transformation?

My point of view here is that green is not just about consumption reduction in a narrow sense, but should also include resource efficiency improvement. So, ZTE’s green 5G cloud core network is mainly considered from these aspects.

First, we’d definitely embrace introducing intelligence into the frame to realize dynamic energy saving from software to hardware. Base on end-to-end network statistics gathering, to be service aware, so to apply the dynamic power saving policy for various scenarios, and the key of intelligence is to penetrate the policy from the service to the orchestration of resource.

Secondly, to elevate system performance to the ultimate level. One direction of a green system, is to use minimum resource for maximum capacity, with the full virtualized system in our view, ZTE put in a lot of effort in optimizing system performance, to lower the watt for each bit.

Thirdly, a heterogeneous infrastructure is mandatory nowadays, so appropriate resource can be precisely applied for specific applications with full automation.

  1. Does ZTE have research and products on liquid cooling technology for green Data Centers?

With the continuous improvement of server performance, the power consumption of CPU chips is also rising. According to the analysis of ASHRAE in the US, when the CPU power consumption exceeds 400W, the current air cooling cannot meet the heat dissipation requirements, and more advanced heat dissipation technologies such as liquid cooling are required for efficient heat dissipation.

Cold-plate liquid cooling is the mainstream currently. ZTE has carried out related research and product planning, and has demonstrated cold-plate liquid-cooling servers to customers in some exhibitions. High energy consumption components of the server, such as CPU, are efficiently, safely and reliably dissipated through the cooling liquid. After large-scale adoption of cold-plate liquid cooling technology in the resource pool, the PUE will be reduced to below 1.2, saving a lot of power for DCs.

  1. Does ZTE 5G Cloud Core have any cases in assisting the green transformation of other industries?

Telecommunication networks including core networks, are key infrastructure for green development in thousands of industries. ZTE 5G Cloud Core has been widely used in various industrial scenarios such as smart factories, smart grids, and smart mines, and has accumulated rich practical experience in green transformation of industries.

In terms of empowering green grid, ZTE and our partners jointly released the 5G TSN green power grid solution, which integrates 5G TSN/5G LAN/URLLC/SLA accurate control in 5G Cloud Core and other domains of the whole network to provide time-promised SLA for the power grid industry, accelerate the deployment of green energy, and help the power industry achieve the strategic goal of “emission peak and carbon neutrality”. The solution won GTI 2022 “Market Development Award”, and won Network X 2022 “Most Innovative Private Network Project Award”.

ZTE will continuously research and actively practice energy-saving and efficiency-improvement technologies, helping operators build end-to-end green and low-carbon networks, building a “green ICT foundation” for industries, and contributing to the sustainable development of society.