Keysight Technologies, a leading technology company that delivers advanced design and validation solutions to help accelerate innovation to connect and secure the world, announced that the Keysight Open Radio Access Network Architect (KORA) solutions have enabled MICAS to obtain one of the first O-RAN certifications for its 5G Open RAN Radio Unit (O-RU). The O-RAN Conformance Certification was issued by the Asia & Pacific OTIC in PRC (APOP).
Earlier this year, the O-RAN ALLIANCE launched its Certification and Badging program in cooperation with Open Testing and Integration Centers (OTIC). O-RAN certificates state that equipment or function is conformant to O-RAN specifications, whereas the O-RAN badges confirm interoperability or end-to-end functionality of an O-RAN solution. O-RAN certificates and badges are issued by the OTICs, which provide a collaborative, open, and impartial working environment to ensure consistency and quality of testing of O-RAN products and solutions.
KORA is a comprehensive suite of O-RAN test solutions that span early pre-silicon development to system integration. This enables O-RAN vendors, mobile operators, service providers, system integrators, and OTICs to verify conformance, interoperability, performance, and security across the entire network lifecycle with test automation that accelerates the development, certification, badging, integration, and deployment of O-RAN compliant networks.
Keysight’s unique, in-depth expertise, conformance, and certification test solutions and Test as a Service (TaaS) were leveraged to perform extensive verification of MICAS’s 5G O-RU compliance to O-RAN ALLIANCE work group (WG4) open fronthaul interface specifications and complete the testing required for O-RAN O-RU certification. The O-RAN WG4 conformance test specification was used for control, user, synchronization, and management planes conformance and certification testing.
Key Points about Keysight and O-RAN Development
- Keysight is the primary editor and contributor of the O-RAN ALLIANCE WG4 conformance test specification used for O-RU certification testing. Keysight is also a key contributor of the O-RAN ALLIANCE Test and Integration Focus Group (TIFG) Certification and Badging process document used for the O-RU certification process.
- Keysight’s O-RAN O-RU Certification test suite consists of the company’s O-DU emulation (Open RAN Studio), vector transceiver (M9410A VXT PXI Vector Transceiver), and transport network impairment solution (Network Emulator 3). These solutions were used for O-RAN conformance and certification testing of MICAS’s 5G O-RU’s open fronthaul control, user, synchronization, and management planes implementation. The company’s test automation software (P7000A Base Station Measurement Automation) can be used to automate the testing process for O-RAN certification and test report generation. The company’s radio frequency (RF) signal analyzer and signal generator (UXA signal analyzer, VXG signal generator) can be used in lieu of its vector transceiver.
- Keysight’s Test as a Service: Enables partners to stay ahead of the latest compliance requirements by addressing the challenges of increasing test complexity, budget constraints, and limited technical resources.
- Keysight offers in-depth technical expertise, as well as a comprehensive suite of O-RAN test solutions. This enables the O-RAN ecosystem to accelerate the development and deployment of O-RAN compliant products supporting open standard interfaces, Xhaul transportation, O-Cloud, RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC) and artificial intelligence/machine learning (AI/ML) assisted RIC applications.
Earlier this year, Keysight participated in the O-RAN Spring PlugFest 2022 with a wide range of test solutions that are part of the Keysight Open Radio Access Network Architect (KORA) portfolio, and enable the open RAN ecosystem to efficiently validate, integrate and deploy fully interoperable RAN equipment.
MICAS Group Chairman, and former CEO of ASTRI, Mr. Hugh Chow, said, “The MICAS O-RU has been awarded one of the first O-RAN certificates, thanks to Keysight's mature O-RU testing solution and professional technical support. MICAS is a world-class Independent Design House, providing signal chain reference solutions that include cutting-edge O-RU (FR1 and FR2) reference designs. We offer signal chain solutions with flexible options to the vertical industries leveraging our modular software and hardware. We look forward to maintaining a close partnership with Keysight as we jointly deliver solutions for the verticals industries connectivity fabric.”
“The O-RAN Certification and Badging program is designed to provide confidence in ensuring the interoperability and conformance of O-RAN products,” said Dr. Chih-Lin I, co-chair of the O-RAN Technical Steering Committee, O-RAN ALLIANCE. “Congratulations to MICAS, Keysight, and APOP for achieving this new milestone. We are looking forward to issuing additional certificates and badges to other ecosystem partners in the very near future, which will help accelerate the availability of O-RAN technologies and solutions for global deployment.”
Zhang Ping, an Academician of CAE and president of the ZGC Institute of Ubiquitous-X Innovation and Applications, said, “Among the first O-RAN approved OTICs, and as the only OTIC in China mainland, APOP focuses on advanced ICT research and promoting productization of 5G O-RAN solutions.” As a third-party independent testing facility in line with O-RAN ALLIANCE principles, it aims to provide open, fair, and robust testing environments for vendors. The successful testing and the first certificate issued with MICAS and Keysight reflect APOP’s commitment.
“O-RAN certification requires extensive testing of 31 test cases that are verified to ensure conformance to O-RAN WG4 Open Fronthaul (OFH) Control, User, Synchronization and Management (CUSM) planes technical specifications,” said Cao Peng, vice president, and general manager of Keysight's Wireless Test Group. “Keysight is pleased to collaborate with MICAS and APOP in reaching this significant milestone. We congratulate them for achieving one of the first O-RAN Certifications for its 5G O-RU.”
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