Northeastern University and the Singapore University of Technology and Design Sign Memorandum of Understanding on Open RAN and 6G

Barcelona, Feb 27, 2024 – At the GSMA Mobile World Congress (MWC) 2024, Northeastern University and the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) have signed a Memorandum of Understanding to establish a partnership on research and development on next-generation wireless networks.

This partnership leverages the expertise, knowledge, and resources on wireless networks and systems of the Future Communications R&D Program (FCP) at SUTD and of the Institute for the Wireless Internet of Things at Northeastern University, with its Open6G initiative. It also aims to connect and run synergistic activities at the Open Testing and Integration Centers (OTICs) hosted at SUTD and Northeastern, driving innovation in Open Radio Access Network (RAN) testing and integration at a global scale.

“We are happy to combine the world’s leading expertise at Northeastern University and SUTD to advance the Open RAN ecosystem,” says Tommaso Melodia, Director of WIoT at Northeastern University. “Together with our partners, we have established a unique ecosystem for innovation and experimentation, facilitating the advancement of open, programmable, and AI-integrated networks in partnership with industry, the federal government, and academic institutions.”

“This MOU between SUTD and Northeastern will open doors for us to further collaborate on research and education in the field of 6G wireless systems and Open RAN systems. This will allow us to leverage on one another’s strengths, expertise, and resources to advance next-generation wireless technologies for the benefit of Singapore and the world,” said Director of the FCP, SUTD Professor Tony Quek.

The SUTD and Northeastern OTICs will host a joint O-RAN ALLIANCE PlugFest in Spring 2024, focused on establishing a repeatable testing framework across the Singapore and Boston OTICs. Participating O-RU or O-DU vendors will have the opportunity to go through the same set of open fronthaul testing in both OTICs. The objective is to show that the testing results based on O-RAN test standards are reproducible and verifiable across different testing labs.


About SUTD: The Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD) is one of the world’s most innovative universities, incorporating the concepts of technology and design to deliver a truly holistic interdisciplinary experience for all of its students. It was established 15 years ago to advance knowledge and nurture technically grounded leaders and innovators to serve societal needs, through a focus on design and multi-disciplinary curriculum and research. With close to one-third of its faculty ranked amongst the top 2% of scientists in the world, SUTD has made a name for itself in various fields of research.

About the SUTD FCP OTIC: SUTD is the host university for Singapore’s national Future Communications Research and Development Programme (FCP) that was set up to future-proof Singapore’s communications and connectivity capabilities. With the establishment of the Future Communications Connectivity Lab (FCCLab), SUTD is primed to accelerate the development of innovative 5G/6G technologies. The software-defined, modular, reconfigurable R&D testbed will facilitate targeted research on future generations of communications technologies, as well as validate technologies and IPs developed in this programme. Leveraging the infrastructure of the FCCLab, SUTD has also established the Asia & Pacific Open Testing and Integration Centre (OTIC) in Singapore, which is the first OTIC in the Southeast Asia region. With the Asia & Pacific OTIC in Singapore, the FCP will look to advance Singapore’s digital infrastructure capabilities and enable the next level of innovation in future communications and capabilities. It will establish a centre of excellence on the security, sustainability and Artificial Intelligence/Machine Learning (AI/ML) aspects of Open RAN. It will also support holistic testing and integration activities for mobile networks and applications with both indoors and outdoors test environments. The Asia & Pacific OTIC in Singapore will serve as part of the global OTIC networks and establish itself as the Southeast Asia hub and gateway to the global Open RAN ecosystem.

For additional information: [email protected]


About Northeastern University: Founded in 1898, they are renowned for their experiential learning model, high-impact research, deep partnerships, and worldwide reach. From day one, they have pursued innovative ways of teaching and research that place a premium on experience and engagement with the world. Their signature approach erases traditional boundaries, empowering not only students, but faculty, alumni, partners, and innovators to solve problems and pursue impact. Northeastern University has created a one-of-a-kind global university system of 13 campuses, 49 alumni communities, and 3,500+ employer partners that forms a dynamic, diverse, and inclusive community. It creates new opportunities for richer educational experiences and deeper collaborations across industries and disciplines to bring the right expertise together to go from promise to reality.

About the Northeastern University Open6G OTIC: The Northeastern University Open 6G OTIC is a one-stop shop for Open RAN innovation, acting as an essential hub for the development and testing of advanced wireless networks using Open RAN and AI technologies. Located at the NEU Boston and Burlington, MA campuses, the OTIC offers extensive testing services that include compliance, interoperability, performance, and functional testing for Open RAN commercial and experimental solutions. These services utilize cutting-edge Open RAN facilities like private 5G RANs with adaptable protocol stacks and the world’s largest wireless network emulator with hardware in the loop, Colosseum. With capabilities such as end-to-end full stack testing in emulated and real-world conditions, Digital Twinning for virtualized testing, network energy efficiency assessments, and infrastructure for interoperability and conformance testing of disaggregated base stations and RAN Intelligent Controllers (RICs), the Open6G OTIC is equipped to evaluate massive MIMO radios, enhancing the spectral efficiency of Open RAN and driving forward innovation in the field.

For additional information: [email protected]

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