Spirent is assuring the performance and capacity of 5G virtualization platforms and core network element functions
In China, the major platform promoting 5G research is the IMT-2020 (5G) Promotion Group, a non-profit jointly established in February 2013 by three ministries in China—the Ministry of Industry and Information Technology, the National Development and Reform Commission and the Ministry of Science and Technology. Any vendor with plans to take a leading position in 5G must meet the IMT-2020 requirements. Spirent’s testing and assurance system and expertise have been playing a notable role helping many vendors accomplish that.
The IMT-2020 5G technological R&D trials are divided into three stages:
5G key technology verification
5G technology plan verification
5G system networking verification.
The third stage was initiated in November 2017 and was designed to promote R&D for 5G technologies for the maturity of the 5G industry. Having worked with IMT-2020 to develop the requirements and been selected as an approved testing provider, Spirent has been engaged by a number of vendors to help complete Phase III of the IMT-2020 Trials, with a focus on validation of major network element functions for 5G core networks and performance testing of virtualization infrastructure platforms.
Emulation drives 5G Core network validation solution
Spirent supports IMT-2020 5G core network validation requirements with Landslide, which emulates subscribers, devices and network functions to perform functional and performance tests of networks and services. The Landslide solution follows 3GPP Release 15 specifications from September 2018 (TS 23.501 15.3.0) including traffic model requirements for performance and capacity envelope testing of major 5G core network element functions such as the AMF, SMF and UPF. Performing these tests requires emulation of huge volumes of subscribers interacting with the 5G network. Landslide emulates subscriber devices, base stations and DN servers initiating registrations, setting up sessions, configuring QoS parameters and requesting traffic data. Landslide is enabling vendors participating in IMT-2020 5G trials to verify the stability of core network elements in realistic traffic situations, ensuring these functions are ready to support high-quality services in China’s 5G production networks.
NFV Infrastructure and VNF performance assurance
Spirent TestCenter and TestCenter Virtual solutions help validate the network forwarding capacities and large-scale virtual machine (VM) batch processing capacities of various cloud platforms. In addition, the system enables verification of the maximum forwarding capacities of VMs with DPDK acceleration utilizing NICs in the SR-IOV mode. The forwarding performance of a single computing node deployed with the maximum VM capacity can also be verified. The Spirent TestCenter portfolio allows service providers and vendors involved with IMT-2020 5G network design to assure their virtualization infrastructure will meet the stringent performance needs of 5G when deployed in real-world networks.
With phase III testing now well underway, Spirent test solutions have enabled multiple vendors to demonstrate compliance with the requirements of the IMT-2020 5G Technological R&D Trials. The IMT-2020 trials give service providers a clear view of the readiness of virtualization infrastructure and 5G network functions prior to large-scale 5G commercialization. Spirent looks forward to continuing to work with the Chinese Ministry of Industry and Information Technology in various R&D trials and testing efforts to jointly promote the healthy development of 5G and enable vendors to fulfill their promises to their customers in the 5G Commercial Age.
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