ONAP and ONF to Collaborate on Multi-Gigabit Open Broadband Access Network

  • Open Networking Foundation (ONF)
ATLANTA and MENLO PARK, CA — AT&T and the Open Networking Foundation (ONF) announced a collaboration to integrate the ONFs' work on multi-gigabit passive optic networks (PON) with the service automation system, ONAP. Work will begin to integrate VOLTHA (Virtual Optical Line Termination Hardware Abstraction), the open source software stack powering PON networks, with ONAP.

This is the next step for agile development progression for virtualized and disaggregated network access for PON networks.

This will build upon ongoing field trials of XGS-PON, which is a fixed wavelength symmetrical 10 Gbps passive optic network technology. It also builds upon previous GPON and CORD trials. These trials proved the viability of disaggregated architecture and the effectiveness of open source and open specs in transforming networking.

The current XGS-PON trial is testing multi-gigabit high-speed internet traffic and providing a AT&T DIRECTV NOW video experience to trial participants. To build the network, we used the following open source software.

  • AT&T Open XGS-PON OLT: an OCP Accepted white box OLT

  • ONOS: the ONF SDN controller that hosts virtual OLT control applicationsv

  • BNG: a virtual broadband network gateway application to manage subscribers

  • VOLTHA (Virtual Optical Line Termination Hardware Abstraction): an ONF software project that provides hardware abstraction and a highly available SDN driver for OLT devices.


VOLTHA, the software powering the PON network trials, was developed by an ONF project community and used the latest in DevOps development techniques to enable rapid prototyping and accelerated delivery to the field trial. AT&T's Foundry in Atlanta developed the vBNG software and AT&T provided overall system integration and field operations for the trial.

"Our network is constantly evolving. Collaboration and openness across AT&T, the ONF, and VOLTHA teams will be key to bringing this 10 Gbps broadband network to customers faster," said Igal Elbaz, senior vice president, Wireless Network Architecture and Design, AT&T. "Now that we've proven the viability of open access technology in our trials, we can start the integration with our operations and management automation platform – ONAP."

"This is representative of how open source communities can come together to introduce solutions that address more comprehensively operator needs," said Jim Zemlin, executive director, The Linux Foundation.

"AT&T's Access team has been an important collaborator in ONF's mission to provide open source platforms for software defined broadband access and we look forward to building on this collaboration as we integrate with ONAP," said Guru Parulkar, executive director, ONF.

The Open Networking Foundation (ONF)
ONF is an operator-led consortium spearheading disruptive network transformation. Now the recognized leader for open source solutions for operators, the ONF first launched in 2011 as the standard bearer for software defined networking (SDN). Led by its operator partners AT&T, China Unicom, Comcast, Deutsche Telekom, Google, NTT Group and Turk Telekom, the ONF has now merged operations with ON.Lab to create a single organization driving vast transformation across the operator space.

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