Design, implementation and experimental validation of a 5G energy-aware reconfigurable hotspot

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Flexibility and energy efficiency are considered two principal requirements of future fifth generation (5G) systems. From an architectural point of view, centralized processing and a dense deployment of small cells will play a vital role in enabling the efficient and dynamic operation of 5G networks. In this context, reconfigurable hotspots will provide on-demand services and adapt their operation in accordance to traffic re quirements, constituting a vital element of the heterogeneous 5G network infrastructure. In this paper we present a reconfigurable hotspot which is able to flexibly distribute its underlying communication functions across the network, as well as to adapt various parameters affecting the generation of the transmitted signal. The reconfiguration of the hotspot focuses on minimizing its energy footprint, while accounting for the current operative requirements. A real-time hotspot prototype has been developed to facilitate the realistic evaluation of the energy saving gains of the proposed scheme. The development flexibly combines software (SW) and hardware (HW) accelerated (HWA) functions in order to enable the agile reconfiguration of the hotspot. Actual power consumption measurements are presented for various relevant 5G networking scenarios and hotspot configurations. This thorough characterization of the energy footprint of the different subsystems of the prototype allows to map reconfiguration strategies to different use cases. Finally, the energy-aware design and implementation of the hotspot prototype is widely detailed in an effort to underline its importance to the provision of the flexibility and energy efficiency to future 5G systems.
HW-SW partitioning, 5G networks, 5G dynamic hotspots, Energy-aware design, Reconfigurability, Real-time prototype, Experimental validation
Bibliographic citation
Font-Bach, O., Bartzoudis, N., Miozzo, M., Donato, C., Harbanau, P., Requena-Esteso, M., López-Bueno, D., Serrano, P., Mangues-Bafalluy, J. & Payaró, M. (2018). Design, implementation and experimental validation of a 5G energy-aware reconfigurable hotspot. Computer Communications, 128, 1–17.