Rimedo Labs has integrated an xApp into the SD-RAN RIC from ONF to demonstrate the operation of the A1 interface as defined by the O-RAN Alliance. This Is the first xApp integrated with the ONF’s SD-RAN platform utilizing the A1 interface for policy control. As part of the ONF’s SD-RAN project, the joint collaboration supports a broad range of automation services in the form of software services, called xApps by O-RAN, that run on the RAN intelligent controller (RIC).
Rimedo Labs Integrates and Open Sources Traffic Steering xApp in Collaboration with ONF’s SD-RAN Project
RIMEDO Labs, a provider of xApps and consulting services in the area of O-RAN, joined the Open Networking Foundation (ONF) last year. As a member of the ONF, RIMEDO Labs contributes to the Software-Defined Radio Access Network (SD-RAN™) project community comprised of leading operators and technology companies focusing on building open-source components for the Open RAN space in compliance with the O-RAN Alliance’s architecture and specifications. The key element of the SD-RAN project is the development of an open-source Near-Real-Time RAN Intelligent Controller (Near RT-RIC) along with a set of exemplar xApps for controlling the RAN.
As part of SD-RAN version 1.4, Rimedo Labs implemented the Traffic Steering (TS) xApp with an aim to improve QoS for user data transmission. The TS xApp is responsible for deciding on UE placement in a specific cell using the handover procedure. The main difference between Rimedo’s TS xApp and a regular handover mechanism is that the former uses the policies defined by O-RAN Alliance to direct a specific UE based on multiple parameters. The policies can be determined per UE or per QoS indicator. The latter is represented by the 5QI to distinguish different types of services. The policies are stored in the TS xApp, but all of them are managed through the A1 interface represented by the A1 Termination (A1T) component of the SD-RAN environment, which was developed during the work along with the integration of TS xApp. The policies define preferences for a particular UEs to assign the connection to the best possible cell and avoid being connected to non-suitable cells. The A1 Interface is implemented based on O-RAN Alliance specifications to comply with the standard.
„Open RAN xApps are designed to enable innovation and make it possible for third-parties to introduce innovative functionality into traditionally closed RAN ecosystems. It is great to see Rimedo Labs at the leading edge of advancing this notion by introducing and open-sourcing a Traffic Steering xApp. This is a testament of the power of Open RAN, and of the power of community-based open collaboration,” said Saurav Das, VP Engineering, ONF.
„Smooth integration of the Traffic Steering xApp designed by Rimedo Labs was accelerated by the rapid development of the A1 interface. We are very happy with the help we got from the ONF team, especially in the A1 interface part, which is one of the main contributions of this work and an important innovation included in the latest version of the SD-RAN platform. We at Rimedo Labs, as an xApp provider, are excited to continue this highly effective cooperation with the ONF team on delivering both open and customized solutions in the Open RAN field,” said dr Adrian Kliks, CTO, Rimedo Labs.
Scope of the Work
As an outcome of the collaboration between Rimedo Labs and ONF for the xApp Integration, additional elements have been Implemented which strengthens the SD-RAN platform itself. Those include:
- A1T addition to the RIC to manage policies for xApps,
- 5QI parameter handling in RANSim to enable per-UE per-Service traffic steering,
- TS xApp Integration using the SD-RAN RIC’s Go based app-SDK,
- Incorporation of O-RAN Alliance A1 policy schema to SD-RAN to enable policy-based control for xApps,
- E2 Interface Service model enhancement to allow the control with the xApp Itself.
The TS xApp is available in open source and can be found at: onosproject/rimedo-ts: Rimedo Labs xApp (github.com)
A demo video showing the outcome of the work can be found at: Rimedo Labs Traffic Steering xApp on ONF’s SD-RAN (DEMO) – YouTube
Join SD-RAN Community Meeting
Join us for a live virtual session on the 17th of March 2022 at 9 am PST (6 pm CET) to learn more about the SD-RAN v1.4 release and Rimedo Lab’s Traffic Steering xApp from project leads and collaborators. There will be a demonstration of the xApp along with technical highlights about the features of the SD-RAN release. Attendees will have the opportunity to ask questions during the live Q&A. Click here to join the SD-RAN Community Meeting on the 17th of March.
About Rimedo Labs
RIMEDO Labs specializes in providing high-quality and substantive consulting, implementation, and R&D services in the field of modern wireless systems. We implement this through an individual and open approach to the client, constantly improving the team operationally and substantively, updating knowledge and a unique combination of science and business applications. RIMEDO Labs is a spin-off from the Poznan University of Technology, Poland from the Institute of Radiocommunications. In addition to the industrial and implementation projects using a licensed know-how solution in the field of effective allocation of resources in wireless networks, RIMEDO Labs also provides consulting and education in the field of O-RAN. The company’s clients and partners are and can be both domestic and foreign entities with various profiles. For more information, please visit https://www.rimedolabs.com/
Download the press release.
About the Open Networking Foundation
The Open Networking Foundation (ONF) is an operator-led consortium spearheading disruptive network transformation. Now the recognized leader for open source solutions for operators, the ONF first launched in 2011 as the standard-bearer for Software-Defined Networking (SDN). Led by its operator partners AT&T, China Unicom, Deutsche Telekom, Google, NTT Group, and Türk Telekom, the ONF is driving vast transformation across the operator space. For further information visit https://www.opennetworking.org/
Rimedo Resources on O-RAN, RIC and xApps
1. Blog: Introduction to O-RAN: Concept and Entities
2. Blog: O-RAN Architecture, Nodes, and Interfaces
3. Blog: O-RAN near-Real-Time RIC (RAN Intelligent Controller)
4. Blog: xApp Implementation: O-RAN Traffic Steering Use Case
5. The O-RAN Whitepaper 2021 – Overview, Architecture and Use Cases
6. The O-RAN Whitepaper 2022 – RAN Intelligent Controller