1. What is ZTE’s Green Strategy? What are ZTEs objectives and commitments of carbon neutralization?  

As one of the world’s leading innovative technology companies, ZTE always regards the green strategy as its core responsibility and missionize Now redefined itself as a driver of the digital economy. By using innovation 5G and cloud technology, we are devoting ourselves to build the digital infrastructure as digital road for sustainable economy, which including the Digital Road to Carbon Neutrality. Our green strategy is using innovative technology to build a green boulevard of digital economy from the four dimensions. They are green ZTE, green supply chain, green digital infrastructure and enabling green vertical industry, which leading carbon peak and carbon neutrality.

Carbon neutralization has become an important strategy of our company, and we have established dedicated teams for long-term operation. Our goal is to achieve carbon peak before 2030 and achieve carbon neutralization before 2060.

  1. It is said that the power consumption of 5G is three times that of 4G. Does this mean that 5G will be a network with higher energy consumption?

Generally, the power consumption of base stations accounts for more than 80% of the mobile network power consumption. According to our calculation, the power consumption of a 5G base station is 2-3 times that of a 4G base station, but the connection bandwidth of 5G will be dozens of times that of 4G. Under full capacity, the energy efficiency of 5G networks will be more than 10 times than s that of 4G networks, and the energy efficiency of 5G networks will continue to increase to 100 times in the future. ZTE has launched the PowerPilot energy saving solution based on big data and AI. It can start different levels of energy saving policies according to the real-time traffic of the site and historical data on the premise of protecting user experience. The whole network energy efficiency by the PowerPolit can be optimized, and the energy consumption of the mobile network can be reduced by more than 20%. In the case of China Mobile(Tianjin), the network can save more than 4 million kwh of power consumption in one year by effectively balancing network performance and user perception while the user traffic demand keeps increasing. By June 2021, the ZTE PowerPilot energy saving solution had been put into commercial use in more than 30 networks over 800000 sites around the world, saving more than 1 billion US dollars in electricity bills for operators.

Green telecom energy. With the concept of “green, efficient, intelligent, and reliable,” ZTE proposes a new “zero carbon” telecom energy network that deeply explores key technologies such as intelligent photovoltaic, intelligent transformation, intelligent lithium electricity, intelligent power distribution, and intelligent temperature control. ZTE provides global customers with high-quality low-carbon and green energy solutions. At present, the conversion efficiency of ZTE’s rectifier module and solar energy module is up to 98%. Through big data and AI, iEnergy cloud management achieves the hybrid use of new and old intelligent lithium electricity and intelligent boosting 57 V remote power supply to reduce line loss 35%. Since 2002, ZTE has provided renewable energy power supply solutions for the communications industry, and has been widely used in the communications industry worldwide. By the end of 2020, more than 400 MW solar power was deployed around the world, saving more than 447 million kwh of electricity per year

Green data center. Data centers are also giants of energy consumption, including IT equipment, cooling equipment, power supply and distribution system and lighting equipment. Alone, IT equipment and cooling equipment account for 80% of energy consumption. Based on a deep understanding of the energy-saving path of the data center, the ZTE ZEGO modular data center is launched in terms of power supply and distribution and heating and ventilation through continuous innovation. It uses efficient cooling systems such as indirect evaporation cooling to save 60% energy, and continuously searches for optimization through AI technology to save more than 8% for energy. Thus, the PUE has been put into commercial lower than 1.3. With China Unicom, we save more than 60 million kwh of power each year in the Pingshan data center. In terms of core routers, we use the onboard two-phase liquid cooling technology. We have worked with China Telecom in the core equipment room of Guizhou Cloud Computing to reduce the cooling energy consumption of the equipment room by 30% and noise by 6 dB, thus greatly improving the equipment room environment.

5G will consume more energy than 4G networks, but the vision of 3GPP is that the energy efficiency of 5G will be 100 times higher than that of 4G in the future. 5G will undoubtedly open a green digital era of human civilization.

  1. At present, the proportion of energy consumption in the ICT industry is only about 2% of the whole world. What is the significance of energy saving in the ICT industry for global carbon neutralization?

Perhaps you have seen the films 《Matrix》 and 《Ready Player One》, which describe a world dominated by the Metaverse. No matter whether it is really the case in the future, we believe that the future society will quickly enter the digital society, and the proportion of the ICT industry, including the proportion of energy consumption, will be greatly increased. Therefore, energy saving is critical to the future of the ICT industry.

According to the studies of GSMA, digital technologies can help other industries reduce their carbon emissions by more than 10 times, comparing with the carbon emissions of the ICT industry itself. The technologies like 5G, big data, cloud computing and artificial intelligence will continue to develop in coming years. The applications in various verticals have become more and more extensive. Through efficient data connection, storage, computing and application, the social efficient of production and resource allocation can be improved.

Digital technologies are playing a key role in the future of carbon neutrality.5G together with the digital infrastructure can definitely empower the green transformation of the vertical industries.ZTE Now redefined itself as a driver of the digital economy. By using innovation 5G and cloud technology, we are devoting ourselves to build the ICT infrastructure as digital road for sustainable economy。

  1. As you mentioned, digital infrastructure can help vertical industries ten times more energy-saving than the ICT industry itself. What industries are currently implementing similar energy saving? What cases can be shared?

According to the statistics of (IEA) of the International Energy Agency, global carbon emissions come from three fields in 2020: Energy power generation and heating, transportation, manufacturing and construction. Digital infrastructure precisely manages and controls the production processes of vertical industries, to save energy, especially in the metallurgical, transportation, and power industries. Together with our partners, ZTE has carried out extensive 5G+ innovative green practices in 15 industries, including iron and steel, metallurgy, electronic manufacturing, port, rail transit, mines, and power, and implemented more than 60 demonstration projects worldwide.

Innovative Metallurgical Industry

Yunnan Sunho Aluminum Co., Ltd. is one of the largest electrolytic aluminum manufacturers in southwest China。Sunho, China Mobile, ZTE and other units in Yunnan work together to build 5G green smart factories. 5G application scenarios include:

  • Energy consumption data analysis
  • Intelligent analysis of aluminum water temperature
  • Online detection of belt cracks
  • Visual meter reading
  • Remote control of vehicles
  • Online monitoring of liquid leakage in the electrolytic bath
  • With all these digital efforts, Sunho can save 90 million kwh or above every year.

Enabling the intelligent manufacturing industry to save energy

In the field of intelligent manufacturing, ZTE built a global 5G intelligent manufacturing base in Binjiang, Nanjing, which is a demonstration factory for “manufacturing 5G by 5G”. In the production phase, through the analysis of the power consumption in the whole production flow, the process is improved in the high-temperature aging phase, realizing automatic temperature adjustment and accurate temperature control, and reducing the power consumption 40%. In other phases, through unmanned intelligent preventive maintenance and online guidance of XR experts, the business trip ratio is reduced by 30%, and the annual travel expense is saved more than one million yuan.

Enabling the Power Network to Save Energy

Since 2019, the China Southern Power Grid, together with China Mobile and ZTE, has built the largest China’s 5G smart grid in Nansha, Guangzhou. The PMU services are officially put into operation, including the first 3GPP R16-based precise timing, network slicing, first 5G differential protection and synchronous phase measurement. Services such as 5G differential protection and 5G precise load control can rapidly improve the speed of single-point fault location, isolation and recovery in the power grid, and reduce the power outage time by more than 100 times. At the same time, it significantly reduces the impact of new energy access on the power grid.

  1. As a traditional manufacturing enterprise, how does ZTE achieve its own green evolution? 

Green production saves resources and energy through continuous transformation of processes. Through the optimization and improvement of the production process (high temperature aging of components and the whole system), the annual power saving exceeds 30 million degrees. The old test equipment replacement and solution improvement saves exceeds 15 million kwh. After passing the pilot test of the green packaging project, the packet material saving can be reduced by 10%. Taking the Shenzhen base as an example, the cooling system of the SMT production line is reconstructed in 2020. The cooling system specially configured for the production line is replaced by the cooling system of the central air-conditioning cooling water cycle, thus reducing the power loss and heat dissipation of the equipment and saving 280000 kwh of power consumption in one year. In Shenzhen production base, VOC emissions decreased from 46 tons per year to 4.5 tons per year, by using more environmentally-friendly detergent and upgrading production processes and equipment.

Green ZTE operation: Carbon footprint tracking management throughout the whole product lifecycle is fully carried out. The company fully promotes intelligent air conditioners and intelligent lighting to greatly reduce electricity consumption under the condition of ensuring a comfortable working environment for employees. With the green photovoltaic battery, the annual electricity generation has exceeded 3 million kwh. In addition, in order to reduce the greenhouse gas emissions arising from business trips, the company continued to promote green office, and the number of teleconferences continued to grow. The proportion of teleconferences in 2020 exceeded 50%.

Recycling economy: The company works with more than 160 environmental service providers around the world to build a global green circulation network. In China, ZTE has five regional processing platforms, and more than 10 professional environmental protection service providers provide professional and efficient recycling services. The overall recycling utilization rate reaches 95%.

Mr. Jason TU , Principle Scientist of NFV/SDN Products, ZTE Corporation