Alcatel-Lucent’s R&D division, Bell Labs, today launched a green communications initiative dubbed Green Touch, a consortium promising to make comms networks 1,000 times more energy efficient than they are today.
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According to Alcatel-Lucent, a reduction of this size will be the equivalent of powering the world’s networks, including the Internet,with the same amount of energy that they currently consume in 24 hours.
Founding industry members include comms giants AT&T, China Mobile and O2 owner Telefónica, alongside academic and government research labs including the Massachusetts Institute of Technology and France’s CEA-LETI Applied Research Institute for Microelectronics.
The consortium’s founding members have called for the networking industry to “join forces in reaching this ambitious target”.
In setting their targets, boffins at Bell Labs claim that current ICT networks have the potential to be 10,000 times more efficient than today.
“With the boom in broadband usage, ICT energy consumption is rapidly increasing and immediate steps need to be taken to mitigate [this]impact,” said IDC senior vice president and general manager for enterprise computing, network, consumer, telecom and sustainability, Vernon Turner.
Bell Labs president Jeong Kim added: “We are witnessing … a fundamental shift in thinking about ICT from a focus on optimising networks for maximum capacity to optimising them for energy efficiency.”
The consortium will meet officially for the first time in February to set out a five year plan to deliver a reference network architecture and demonstrate key components.