The "Big Bang" happening in AI is creating increased energy demand for operators. In response, Huawei announced the Green 1-2-3 Solution at the Green ICT Development Summit during Mobile World Congress 2023.
A series of keynote speeches were delivered by Huawei executives as well as operator clients, with many focusing on the challenges of reconciling the need to progress technological development with the need to preserve the environment. Indeed, the difficulty of achieving this balance was a key element of the agenda – but in his keynote, Huawei’s President of ICT Strategy & Marketing Peng Song explained that this conundrum does not have to be such a stark choice.
Titled “Green & Development, Choosing Not to Choose”, Peng’s keynote explained that the development of ICT can be green if the right balance is struck between energy efficiency, renewable energy utilization, and user experience. At MWC Barcelona 2023, Huawei will launch solutions that embody this approach to pave the way for the green development of ICT infrastructure networks.
In his speech, Peng said: "An AI Big Bang is underway. AI brings new benefits and opportunities to operators. However, it also requires better ICT infrastructure, due to higher bandwidth and increased computing power leading to a rapid increase in network energy consumption. The ICT industry seems to be faced with the tough choice to either go green or develop. However, we believe the industry can choose not to choose, and instead go green and develop simultaneously."
Peng explained that Huawei advocates expanding the focus of energy efficiency from merely improving the network's power efficiency to reducing total energy consumption. In light-load scenarios, multi-dimensional shutdown technology can be employed to enable intelligent shutdown across different dimensions, such as frequency, time, channel, and power. Meanwhile, in ultra-light-load scenarios, equipment can be put into a deep dormancy mode. For example, new materials and processes can be used to solve condensation and low temperature issues when AAU hardware shuts down. This enables the power module to independently remain in standby, meaning the power consumption of the AAU during extremely light load can be reduced from 300 W to less than 10 W.
Huawei also called for an expansion of the focus of renewable energy, from the scale of green power deployment to the efficient use of renewable energy. An upgrade from network-specific policies to site-specific policies can be undertaken in order to improve the accuracy of renewable energy deployment. Additionally, the time required for intelligent scheduling can be reduced from days to minutes, thus maximizing the economic and environmental benefits of renewable energy. Multi-dimensional site information such as weather, electricity price, battery status, and service volume can be obtained, and intelligent scheduling algorithms can maximize power generation efficiency and load-based power availability, while minimizing overall power cost.
User experience remains of paramount importance, but Peng noted that the focus should no longer solely be on network energy saving and KPI assurance, but extend to user experience assurance. Optimal energy saving policies can be adopted according to different network scenarios. In low-traffic scenarios, basic network KPIs are guaranteed to maximize energy saving, while user experience is guaranteed in high-traffic scenarios. Experience-driven approaches are being upgraded to data-driven approaches, allowing energy-saving policies to be generated in minutes and optimization policies to be delivered in milliseconds.
Peng emphasized that Huawei iteratively updates its green solutions in accordance with its belief in the potential of the three aforementioned areas, and has launched the Huawei Green 1-2-3 solution. Within this solution, "1" refers to one index for green network construction; "2" refers to the focus on two scenarios: high energy efficiency and ultra-low energy consumption; and "3" refers to a systematic three-layer solution that covers sites, networks, and operations. Peng closed his speech by highlighting Huawei's willingness to work with operators worldwide to strike a balance between going green and development, in order to accelerate green ICT development.