As the Radio Access Network (RAN) industry continues to evolve towards an open, virtualized and disaggregated environment. One of the central components of open RAN, RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC) continues to gain momentum. RIC offers an opportunity to Telcos enabling them to drive RAN efficiency and enable new use cases through greater network efficiency, resource assurance and control. All these benefits will enable Telcos to save cost, improve QoS, and generate new revenue streams.


STL RIC platform is an O-RAN compliant cloud native architecture and sits at the heart of open and virtualized RAN network. It helps in creating an open ecosystem for developing, deploying, and operating third party applications (xApps for Near-RT RIC and rApps for Non-RT RIC) that would enable TCO optimization and enable revenue generation.


STL RIC platform comprises of:



  1. Service Management and Orchestration Framework (SMO Framework)

    1. a1. Non- Real Time RAN Intelligent Controller (Non-RT RIC)
    2. a2. RAN Operations & Management (RAN OAM)
    3. a3. RAN Domain Orchestrator (RAN DO)


  2. Near-Real Time RAN Intelligent Controller (Near-RT RIC)

STL RIC Portfolio




a1. Non-Real Time RAN Intelligent Controller (Non-RT RIC)

A logical function that enables non-real time control and optimization of RAN elements and resources. The four key features includes-

  • Centralized Monitoring across Multiple Zones: Non-RT RIC with its distributed Architecture supports monitoring of multiple zone operations via a Centralized User Interface (CUI)
  • Operational Management via Visual Indicators: Network Operators can manage their day-to-day operations through the Visual Indicators in Non-RT RIC Dashboard
  • Complete Application Life Cycle Management (LCM): STL Non-RT RIC rApp Application Life Cycle Management (LCM) supports complete lifecycle of any 3rd Party rApp from Registration → Deployment → Monitoring → Upgrade → Downgrade → Removal
  • Automated Installation: Enables cloud native deployment of micro services

a2. RAN Operations & Management (RAN O&M)

RAN OAM (Operations and Management) is responsible for the management of the elements under its span of control through the STL OAM GUI. Below are the three key features:-

  • Vendor Agnostic Service: Management operations and/or notifications that is agnostic about the entities managed. For example, operations for creating, reading, updating, and deleting managed object instances
  • Network Resource Model: It refers to management information represented by information models representing the managed entities
  • Managed Entity: It refers to management information represented by information models representing the managed entities

a3. RAN Domain Orchestrator (RAN DO)

STL RAN Domain Orchestrator (RAN DO) will support such as Infrastructure Management, Site Registration Function, Image Inventory Management, Platform Installation, Location and Topology Management. It supports three key features

  • RAN NSSMF (Network Slice Subnet Management Function)
  • NF Orchestration
  • Cloud infrastructure management and operatio

b. Near-Real Time RAN Intelligent Controller (Near-RT RIC)

Near-Real Time RAN Intelligent Controller (Near-RT RIC) is an O-RAN compliant logical function that enables near-real-time control and optimization of RAN elements and resources via fine-grained (e.g., UE basis, Cell basis) data collection and actions over E2 interface

  • Network control back to operators: RIC with its standardized open interfaces gives the control of RAN optimization back to operators and enables them to host third party xApps
  • Improves RAN performance: RIC effectively balances the RAN load and hence alleviates network congestion
  • Quick enablement of new services: Separation between STL Near-RT RIC platform and xApps helps in quick enablement of new service
  • Supports low latency applications: Fine time granular control loops across L3 to L1 helps in various dynamic situations like mobility, scheduling, and load balancing
  • AI/ML Driven Network Control: Enables data driven optimization by supporting operator's RAN data to deploy AI/ML models
  • Pre-O-RAN Support: STL Near-RT RIC can be deployed in both brown and/or green Fields

RIC Use Cases


Data Centre Solutions
Real-time Policy Design

Hybrid Automatic Neighbour Relations Enhancements (ANR-E)*


Leveraging on QoS / KPI measurements STL RIC (rApp) can improve the neighbour relations providing easy integration of disparate solutions from multiple vendors.

Data Centre Solutions
Real-time Policy Design

PCI
(Physical Cell Id) optimization*


STL RIC (rApp)Automatically detects and resolve PCI collisions and confusions without manual intervention by creating optimal PCI code allocations.

Data Centre Solutions
Real-time Policy Design

Mobility Load
Balancing (MLB)*


Using the metrics such as RSRP/CQI/Cell-load STL RIC (xApp) builds an ML Model, and if a cell is overloaded then the UE's target cells are identified, and load balancing is achieved.

Data Centre Solutions
Real-time Policy Design

Other High Value Use cases through 3rd Party Vendors/ Partners


RAN energy savings. Atmospheric ducting interference mitigation. Alarm root cause analysis, alarm correlation, and ticket suppression. Elimination of drive tests.

Benefits


Real-time Policy Design

Modular

Modular, any changes with respect to bug fixes or software upgrades can be done

Real-time Policy Design

Flexible

Decoupling gives more flexibility, telecom operator has the option of deploying Non - RT RIC alone

Real-time Policy Design

Vendor Agnostic

Operators can now choose the applications that adds value and addresses their use cases

Real-time Policy Design

Total Cost of Ownership

STL RIC can optimise both Opex and Capex and help reduce the overall cost


Videos



"Near-Real Time RAN Intelligent Controller "
Mobility Load Balancing

"Non-Real Time RAN Intelligent Controller"
Avoids PCI Collision and Confusion

Learning Resources

Key insights into future-ready data centre designs

Brochure

RAN Intelligent Controller (RIC)

Read More
Whitepaper

Key Enabler for MNOs TCO Reduction

Read Now
Whitepaper

The Role of the RAN Intelligent Controller in Open RAN Systems

Download