Abstract

In this paper, we discuss energy-efficiency improvements in core networks obtained as a result of work carried out by the GreenTouch consortium over a five-year period. A number of techniques that yield substantial energy savings in core networks were introduced, including (i) the use of improved network components with lower power consumption, (ii) putting idle components into sleep mode, (iii) optically bypassing intermediate routers, (iv) the use of mixed line rates, (v) placing resources for protection into a low power state when idle, (vi) optimization of the network physical topology, and (vii) the optimization of distributed clouds for content distribution and network equipment virtualization. These techniques are recommended as the main energy-efficiency improvement measures for 2020 core networks. A mixed integer linear programming optimization model combining all the aforementioned techniques was built to minimize energy consumption in the core network. We consider group 1 nations’ traffic and place this traffic on a US continental network represented by the AT&T network topology. The projections of the 2020 equipment power consumption are based on two scenarios: a business as usual (BAU) scenario and a GreenTouch (GT) (i.e., BAU+GT) scenario. The results show that the 2020 BAU scenario improves the network energy efficiency by a factor of 4.23× compared with the 2010 network as a result of the reduction in the network equipment power consumption. Considering the 2020 BAU+GT network, the network equipment improvements alone reduce network power by a factor of 20× compared with the 2010 network. Including of all the BAU+GT energy-efficiency techniques yields a total energy efficiency improvement of 315×. We have also implemented an experimental demonstration that illustrates the feasibility of energy-efficient content distribution in IP/WDM networks.

© 2018 Optical Society of America

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