IEEE Future Networks World Forum
On-Demand through 15 November 2022

FP4: 5G Challenge Results and State of ORAN Interoperability Panel

PART 1. Hot Off the Press: 5G Challenge Preliminary Event Results

30-minute presentation

We will begin with a short presentation that announces the outcomes of the 5G Challenge Preliminary Event: RAN Subsystem Interoperability ( This challenge is being conducted by the National Telecommunications and Information Administration’s (NTIA) Institute for Telecommunication Sciences (ITS) on behalf of the US Department of Defense (DoD) to accelerate adoption of 5G open interfaces, interoperable subsystems, and multi-vendor solutions by fostering a large, vibrant, and growing vendor community dedicated to advancing 5G interoperability towards true plug-and-play operation.

The IEEE Future Networks Forum begins two weeks after the closing ceremony of the 5G Challenge Preliminary Event. The presentation would include analyses that will only have been seen by a limited audience. This presentation will reveal 5G Challenge initial results that are “hot off the press.” Topics will include why interoperability is important, the vision of the challenge, what we learned, and an announcement of another 5G Challenge to be held in 2023.

Due to the very short window between the challenge completion and the Future Networks Forum, this presentation cannot have an accompanied paper. The speakers will be Julie Kub and Jeremy Glenn (NTIA/ITS).

PART 2. Industry Panel on the State of ORAN Interoperability

20 minutes divided among panelists; followed by 40 minutes of a panel discussion


With the adoption of network function virtualization in 5G, the industry has been moving forward over the past two years with disaggregation of both hardware and software via the specifications work undertaken by the Open RAN Alliance (ORAN Alliance). One major goal of the ORAN Alliance is creation of specifications that lead to interoperable RAN devices including Control Units (CU), Distributed Units (DU), and Radio Units (RU). The focus of this panel is an objective assessment of the present state of CU, DU, and RU interoperability, the timeline for general availability of such units with “plug and play” capabilities and the discussion of challenges in reaching ORAN goals for vendor and operators.

The panel will be weighted towards technology issues and will address the following:

  • Brief outline of ORAN specifications and goals
  • Present state of equipment availability and demonstrated interoperability
  • Projected timelines for general availability
  • Challenges to the broad deployment of ORAN—Greenfield / Brownfield, Security, and Integration of Management Frameworks
  • Actions to address these challenges


All wireless telecom suppliers, operators, policymakers, and users.


The focus of this panel is an open discussion of the present state of CU, DU, and RU interoperability, the timeline for general availability of such units with “plug and play” capabilities and the discussion of challenges in reaching ORAN goals for vendor and operators.


NTIA is engaged on multiple efforts to support 5G technology. Some information can be found on the NTIA 5G Initiative YouTube channel. NTIA/ITS hosts the International Symposium on Advanced Radio Technologies (ISART) each year, which leverages panel discussions to enhance audience engagement.


The panel will start with each panelist presenting their own viewpoint for 4 to 5 minutes, for a total of 30 minutes. The remaining time (1 hour) will be a moderated panel discussion.

The panelists will be as follows:

  • Moderator: Lauriston Hardin, PE
  • Arupjyoti (Arup) Bhuyan, INL
  • Ladan Pickering, Fujitsu
  • Ravikanth Pasumarthy, Capgemini
  • Rhishi Bhaskar, JMA Wireless
  • Sidd Chenumolu, DISH



T. Lauriston Hardin, 5G Challenge Chief Technical Advisor (

Short Bio: T. Lauriston Hardin, P.E. has over 35 years of experience in the telecommunications industry including fixed and mobile wireless, backhaul and regulatory engagements. He is a recognized leader in the wireless broadband arena with deep experience in mobile and fixed networks and spectrum matters and has interfaced extensively with the FCC and several international regulatory bodies on spectrum matters. As a consultant, he has a broad experience base including RAN planning, network design, spectrum planning, and backhaul planning as well as large scale network deployments and decommissioning. Recently, he has focused on 5G networks (RAN and Core) providing Subject Matter Expert consulting to the US Department of Defense’s 5G to Next G Initiative and other 5G clients. He holds a Bachelor of Electrical Engineering from the Georgia Institute of Technology and is a licensed Professional Engineer.



Julie Kub, Project Lead, DoD 5G Challenge (

Short Bio: Julie Kub has worked at ITS for 25 years and has served as the ITS.E (Software Engineering and Data Science) Division Chief since 2015. Her division is currently designing a machine learning algorithm to classify radio frequency clutter to better predict radio propagation. She received a DOC bronze medal in 2016 for her work developing the AWS-3 1695-1710 MHz Radio Frequency Coordination Portal (RFCP) to coordinate spectrum sharing. In 2011, she received a bronze medal for her leadership of the Propagation Modeling Website (PMW), enabling multiple agencies to achieve their mission-critical communication systems planning. She received a U.S. Patent in 1999 for developing the “Method for Characterizing Air Traffic Control Radar Beacon System Antenna Patterns” in support of the FAA. She has a BEE from Carnegie Mellon University (CMU) and an MEE from University of California Los Angeles (UCLA).


Jeremy Glenn, 5G Challenge Manager, DoD 5G Challenge (

Short Bio: Jeremy Glenn has expertise designing, implementing, and managing all aspects of prizes and challenges. Before joining ITS, he managed open innovation competitions for NIST focused on advancing computer vision research and mobile fingerprinting technologies for first responders. As prize manager for the Enhancing Computer Vision for Public Safety Challenge, he partnered with ITS to develop and execute the challenge resulting in the successful distribution of multiple high-quality R&D training datasets to NTIA’s Consumer Digital Video Library (CDVL). While at NIST, he was also the lead author and architect of the NIST Special Publication, “Public Safety Communications Research Division Impact Report: Fiscal Years 2017-2019,” a first-of-its-kind qualitative assessment of the outputs and impacts of NIST-PSCR’s research programs. He is an alumnus of OPM’s flagship Presidential Management Fellowship (PMF) Program, and twice served as a Pathways legal intern with the DoD Inspector General’s Office of General Counsel, and the FDIC’s Legal Information Technology Unit. He holds a B.A. in public policy, an M.A. in government, a J.D. from the Scalia Law School at George Mason University, and is a licensed member of the Virginia Bar.


Arupjyoti Bhuyan, Technical Director of the Wireless Security Institute in the Idaho National Laboratory (

Short Bio: Arupjyoti (Arup) Bhuyan is the Technical Director of the Wireless Security Institute in the Idaho National Laboratory (INL). The focus of his research is on secure implementation of future generations of wireless communications with scientific exploration and engineering innovations across the fields of wireless technology, cybersecurity, and computational science. Specific goals are to lead and focus wireless security research efforts for 5G and Beyond with national impact, to secure communications for a nationwide unmanned aerial system and for 5G spectrum sharing with distributed scheduling. Dr. Bhuyan has extensive industry experience in wireless communications from his work before he joined INL in October, 2015. He received his Ph.D. in Engineering and Applied Sciences from Yale University. He is a senior member of IEEE.


Ravikanth Pasumarthy, Capgemini (

RaviKanth is working as Chief Architect at Capgemini Engineering having ~26 years of experience in developing Wireless and Satellite based systems. He is also leading the Open RAN related solution initiatives at Capgemini Engineering. His area of expertise involves Solution Engineering, System Architecture and realization for 4G/5G systems and RIC/Apps based on O-RAN architecture, application of AI/ML concepts to RAN and solutioning of NTN systems. He was involved in successful conceptualization, architecture, design to delivery of wireless solution of various form-factors (macro to small-cell) and use-cases based on 4G/5G technologies for multiple customers. Ravi is IEEE Senior Member and is also part of IEEE Comsoc Execom (Bangalore Section). He is active speaker speaking on 5G and related topics in various workshops/conferences.


Rishi Bhaskar, SVP & General Manager, JMA Wireless, (

Short Bio: Rishi Bhaskar is a Business Leader and General Manager with multiple years of sales, strategy, and P&L management experience across global Fortune 500 organizations. He is responsible for all go-to market activity for JMA Wireless with a keen focus on 4G and 5G technology solutions, RAN and ORAN. He leads all partners and vertical market opportunities for JMA Wireless. Prior to joining JMA, he led the Global Hyperscaler Customer Unit for Ericsson. He focused on new revenue opportunities where cloud & social media organizations consume Ericsson products and services as well as developing global strategic alliances with cloud organizations to create unique 5G solutions leveraging cloud platforms. Key Partners included Google Cloud, AWS, Microsoft, and others. Prior to that, he led the profit & loss center for Ericsson’s North America Energy and Public Sector verticals including DoD, Federal Government, State & Local Government, Utilities, and Oil & Gas. Prior to joining Ericsson, Rishi held leadership roles at Motorola Solutions, where he led the go-to market business for Public Safety Broadband and was a key industry participant in the establishment of FirstNet. Additionally, he led all indirect business across North America for Alcatel-Lucent prior to joining Motorola Solutions. Rishi started his career as a software engineer in the height of the dot com era.


Sidd Chenumolu, Vice President of Technology Development, DISH (

Short Bio: As Vice President of Technology Development, Sidd Chenumolu leads DISH’s wireless technology and architecture team and supervises the design and architecture of the company’s end-to-end 5G network. He manages the technology strategy at DISH embracing O-RAN centric future ready network. He is responsible for the architecture choices and design decisions related to 5G network and integration with partners. He is also leading the standards group that represent DISH at 3GPP, ORAN, GSMA, CBRS Alliance, ITU, TIP and others. Prior to DISH, Mr. Chenumolu served in the Network and Technology Development teams at Sprint and Clearwire where he oversaw LTE design, product roadmaps and feature creation. He has a Master’s of Science in Electrical Engineering from the University of Southern California.


Ladan Pickering, 5G Engagement Lead, Fujitsu (

Short Bio: Ladan Pickering is a professional services 5G Engagement Lead at Fujitsu Network Communications. Her areas of focus are cloud-native ORAN test automation, N-RT RIC (Near Real time RAN Intelligent Controller), and xAPPs to improve operation efficiency, in addition to enterprise APPs. During her career, she has held a variety of positions at Fujitsu and other communications network companies, including software strategist, system engineer, technical lead, and technology specialist. Her area of expertise is 5G-enabled applications that drive network services, ORAN N-RT RIC, and smart cities. She has collaborated with global teams and ecosystem partners to build and deploy 5G-enabled software solutions during the past four years. She has a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the University of North Texas, and a master’s degree in computer architecture from SMU. She holds two patents.


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