Metro-Haul holds successful plenary session addressing implications of 5G use cases in metro optical networks

Third Plenary Meeting of EU-Funded Project, Hosted in Lisbon by Coriant, Advances Technology Research and Collaboration in the Area of 5G-Optimized Metro Networks

LISBON, Portugal, 9 May 2018 – The Metro-Haul Project, a Horizon 2020 European Union research and innovation program, today announced the successful completion of its third plenary meeting. More than 50 people from across 21 companies and universities spanning 8 European countries have just attended the highly productive project plenary meeting hosted by Coriant in April at its R&D facilities in Lisbon, Portugal.

The meeting highlighted the practical points of convergence for access and metro networks, and the establishment of suitable architecture and fundamental structure of future metro networks. Discussions also included the critical role of storage, compute, and virtual function capabilities; underpinned with flexible and elastic optical nodes in support of the demands of the 5G network. These plenaries provide opportunities for heated and productive discussions: a notable outcome for the most recent session led to significant advances in understanding of how transponders from different vendors can be configured and operated using common data models.

“The Metro-Haul project targets are ambitious but realistic for the demands of 5G,” said Emilio Riccardi from TIM, the Italian telecommunications company. “We aim to enable optical metro networks with 100 times the capacity, 10 times less energy consumption, support for latency-sensitive services, and end-to-end SDN-based management that enables fast configuration leading to a 20% reduction in OPEX. The cooperation between equipment manufacturers and network operators within Metro-Haul offers the possibility of achieving these targets and making a huge difference to the industry.”

Metro-Haul is already significantly exceeding its stated KPIs with over 90 separate research papers, journal articles, and conference presentations published or accepted for publication within the ten months since the start of the project. The recent OFC conference held in San Diego in March 2018 was a notable success, achieving no fewer than 23 Metro-Haul contributions including papers, invited talks, workshops, and tutorials.

“With active support from industry leaders and European academic institutions, Metro-Haul is making important contributions to the understanding of the demands that emerging 5G use cases will place on metro network infrastructure,” said Carlos Ferreira, Country Manager for Coriant Portugal. “We were pleased to host the third plenary session and help facilitate driving this important work forward. The implications of bandwidth growth on metro networks represent a pressing issue for our customers, and the research Metro-Haul provides is an invaluable source of architecture, technology, and use case information that will help maximize the value of 5G-optimized networks.”

Chigo Okonkwo and Nicola Calabretta are Assistant Professors in the ECO Group at the Eindhoven University of Technology working on Metro-Haul.

“The Metro-Haul project is strengthened by contributions from some of the top universities in Europe,” said Chigo. “It is crucial for projects like this to engage with academic researchers who are able to supplement and enhance the output of industrial and commercial R&D.” “TU Eindhoven welcomes the opportunity to engage in a prestigious 5G project like Metro-Haul,” added Nicola, “especially in view of the impact it is having across the industry.”

About Metro-Haul Launched in mid-2017, the Metro-Haul Project receives funding (G.A. 761727) from the Horizon 2020 EU research and innovation program. The aim of the €7.7 million project is to design and build a smart optical metro infrastructure able to support traffic originating from heterogeneous 5G access networks, addressing the anticipated capacity increase and its specific characteristics, including mobility, low latency, and low jitter. This infrastructure will also support a wide variety of services and use cases with special emphasis on services from various industries vertical to the ICT.

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