The 6Green project envisions the 5/6G ecosystem as a sustainable, interconnected, greener, flexible end-to-end intercompute system, able to properly interface stakeholders by means of latest generation intent-based and cloud-native paradigms, and facilitating their interactions according to the aforementioned green economy business models and agreements. This will enable 5/6G vertical applications and network slices to be dynamically, scalably, and autonomically placed in the edge-cloud continuum, instantiated, modified, dimensioned, mi-grated, and released in a coordinated fashion, when and where really needed by end-users to minimize the induced impact at the infrastructure layer.
In order to shift from the current, flat/semi-static lifecycle management of network slices and applications to novel and real-time adaptive operations, three ground-breaking technological innovations have been identified that reflect the structure of the Project activities:
1. Edge Agility:
a sort of handover procedure providing smart, fast, and automated horizontal scalability to vertical application and related slices across the 5/6G edge-cloud continuum. The workload, as well as the latency budget, are redistributed according to user or infrastructure-driven events, (e.g., user mobility, seamless workload replacement/migrations, etc.). The slice/vertical application footprint is rapidly scaled to zero in all not used continuum areas and quickly resumed the operating capacity when needed.
2. Green Elasticity:
the provision of energy-aware, hardware-assisted acceleration to network functions and vertical applications to enable smart vertical scalability across the whole 5/6G ecosystem. Relying on hardware acceleration engines, which exhibit low power-consumption dependency against their usage, allows to lower processing latency with respect to pure software artefacts and to reduce consumption by exploiting standby/low power modes joint with optimal configurations/deployments.
3. Energy-Aware Backpressure:
the design of a set of cross-domain observability mechanisms and analytics, fed by hardware-level energy consumption metrics, to evaluate the energy and the carbon footprint ascribable to a vertical application or a slice. The introduction of green business models is seen as a catalyst to motivate all the stakeholders to adopt environmentally conscious behaviors through economic incentives.
Three future-proof vertical applications have been identified as project use-cases, not only because they represent future-proof 5/6G applications extremely relevant to energy- and carbon-awareness, but also because they provide challenging requirements on network slices and (edge) computing and storage facilities, which can vary according to the Energy-Aware Backpressure information flows and activated application functionalities, and that can differently trigger Edge Agility and Green Elasticity zero-touch operations.