OREANDA-NEWS. ADVA Optical Networking announced today that it is playing a key role in the Convergence of Fixed and Mobile Broadband Access/Aggregation Networks (COMBO) project. The initiative, funded by the European Commission, is developing pioneering technology vital to the success of 5G. 16 partner organizations, including operators, equipment suppliers and research centers, are collaborating on COMBO to create new approaches that will enable full architectural convergence of fixed and mobile networks. The project also focuses on integrating network functionality to enhance security, simplicity and user experience. The COMBO consortium's main outcomes and proofs of concept were successfully demonstrated at a recent showcase in Lannion, France.

"The COMBO project represents a significant achievement for Europe and for the telecommunications industry. By working closely with the partner organizations, we have been able to take a concrete step towards solving some key challenges of 5G and shaping the infrastructure of tomorrow," said Christian Gacon, VP, wireline and transport convergent networks, Orange. "The outcomes of the COMBO project will redesign fixed and mobile networks towards more integration like shared transport infrastructures. This will allow improvements to performance and energy efficiency that we are targeting for 5G and the internet of things."

The new network architecture designed by the COMBO project is based on the concept of next-generation point-of-presence (NG-PoP), which enables network components to be hosted centrally or at the edge for optimum efficiency. In this open and intelligent environment, fixed and mobile infrastructures are physically integrated in converged broadband access/aggregation networks. The technology was presented in a public showcase that followed two and a half years of close collaboration and seven weeks of experiments at the P?le Images & R?seaux in Lannion, France. Key transport and functional enablers of 5G networking were successfully demonstrated as well as distributed and centralized NG-POP scenarios. Video footage of the showcase is now available so that the wider industry can benefit from the COMBO project's vision for integrated fixed-mobile networks.

"Fixed-mobile convergence is essential to 5G and therefore underpins the growth of the European digital economy. That's why so many major vendors, operators and research institutes from seven European countries have joined forces to create and evaluate the technology," commented Achim Autenrieth, director, advanced technology, ADVA Optical Networking. "The 5G network will have to cope with a vast increase in traffic to accommodate users as well as an enormous range of connected objects. It will also have to be agile to handle an increasingly diverse range of services. That's why it's essential not only to integrate Wi-Fi, wireless and fiber access infrastructure, but also to create functional convergence. The new automated system of universal user authentication that ADVA Optical Networking has been working to integrate will bring simplicity, enhanced security and a massive increase in coverage."