MCTIC, RNP and CPQD sign a technical cooperation agreement for the OpenRAN Brazil Program

The Ministry of Science, Technology and Innovation (MCTI), the National Education and Research Network (RNP) and the Center for Research and Development in Telecommunications (CPqD) have just announced a Technical Cooperation Agreement for the execution of the first stage of the OpenRAN Brazil Program, which will contribute to the development of a 5th generation (5G) mobile network in the country.

Published in the Official Gazette of the Union this Tuesday (30), the agreement aims to enable the development of innovative applications for open and unbundled radio access networks (or RAN, Radio Access Network), within the first phase of the project.

“The project involves the research and development of parts of an OpenRAN 5G network”, explains Gustavo Correa Lima, Wireless Communication Solutions manager at CPQD. “This includes intelligent control of access networks (RIC) and their applications, all network orchestration and management (Service Management and Orchestration, or SMO), and intelligent control of other network segments, such as optical transport in backhaul, midhaul and fronthaul. In addition, the project will also explore the ability of a 5G network to support advanced applications that require low latency, high reliability and high data rates,” he adds.

Launched in August 2021, the OpenRAN Brazil Program is divided into three phases. The first will focus on the control and orchestration of both optical, IP and radio resources and the cloud resources necessary for the end-to-end operation of a 5G network. With 36 months of validity (until November 2023), the project will receive resources from the Informatics Law and foresees the application of a total of R$ 32.4 million in budgetary resources.

In addition, the first phase involves the construction of a demonstration and experimentation platform, distributed in two locations (Rio de Janeiro and Campinas), containing all the components of a 5G network composed of open and unbundled equipment and controlled by a open software stack. The second and third phases are in the modeling and capture phase.

“Our objective is to support the development of 5G in Brazil in a safe way, and with high availability and performance for use in education, research and innovation, and this agreement meets this purpose. The execution of a Program such as OpenRAN is a very important step towards the democratization of access to this technology in our country”, concludes Iara Machado, RNP's Research and Development director.