In the coming days, operators may be able to save up to 70 percent of energy consumed in their networks thanks to the successful completion of the two-and-a-half years long EARTH research project.
Partially funded by the European Union's Seventh Framework Program (FP7), the EARTH research project originally aimed to achieve a 50 percent reduction in the energy consumption of 4th Generation (4G) mobile wireless communications networks.
The result exceeded the expectations and is one of the reasons the EARTH project won the prestigious 4th Future Internet Award this year.
About 15 telecommunications service providers, component and infrastructure vendors and academic institutions joined their hands to cut the energy consumption as well as enable growth in mobile data traffic.
"We have taken Green to the heart of our research programmes," said Tod Sizer, head of access research at Bell Labs, the research arm of Alcatel-Lucent. "Our commitment to initiatives such as EARTH is a prominent example of how Alcatel-Lucent is driving sustainable innovation. We know it cannot be accomplished alone, and we need models of action like EARTH."
Theoretical and practical savings
The EARTH solutions have been proven to deliver both theoretical and practical savings through their implementation, validation and experimental analyses.
Operators can leverage these savings to expand their mobile networks to address the growing traffic demands.
It is claimed that this expansion will be achieved without increasing the carbon dioxide footprint of the mobile networks.
The participating members of the EARTH project are: Alcatel-Lucent (project coordinator), Ericsson (technical manager), NXP Semiconductors France, DOCOMO Communications Laboratories Europe GmbH, Telecom Italia S.p.A., CEA, University of Surrey, Technische Universität Dresden, imec, IST- Technical University of Lisbon, University of Oulu, Budapest University of Technology and Economics, TTI and ETSI.
"We were glad to have a leading role in the EARTH project, and to contribute to creating a broader understanding of trends in network energy consumption over the next 10 years. It will be crucial for telecom companies to work even more actively with implementing the best practice concepts developed in the project into reality," said Jan Färjh, vice president and head of Ericsson Research.
Sign up for Computerworld eNewsletters.