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E User Description, Immediate Assignment on TCH

User Description, Immediate


Assignment on TCH
© Ericsson Radio Systems AB

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1999-02-10
User Description, Immediate Assignment on TCH

2 (15) © Ericsson Radio Systems AB 14/1553-HSC 103 12 Uen Rev C


1999-02-10
User Description, Immediate Assignment on TCH

Contents
1 Feature overview........................................................................................... 5

1.1 Introduction .............................................................................................. 5

1.2 Background.............................................................................................. 5
1.3 What can be achieved............................................................................. 5

2 Technical description................................................................................... 7

2.1 General .................................................................................................... 7


2.2 Phase 1 and phase 2 MSs...................................................................... 8

2.3 Immediate assignment strategy............................................................... 8

2.4 Channel allocation profiles ...................................................................... 8


2.5 Emergency calls ...................................................................................... 9

3 Engineering Guidelines................................................................................11
4 Parameters.....................................................................................................13

4.1 Main controlling parameters .................................................................... 13

4.2 Value ranges and default values.............................................................13


5 References.....................................................................................................15

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User Description, Immediate Assignment on TCH

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Feature overview

1 Feature overview
1.1 Introduction
When a connection is to be established, the immediate assignment
procedure allocates a channel for the call set-up signalling. The
signalling channel can be either a Stand alone Dedicated Control
Channel (SDCCH) or a Traffic Channel (TCH). The Immediate
Assignment on TCH feature provides the possibility to choose between
several different channel allocation strategies at immediate assignment,
defined in the Channel Administration feature (ref. 1).
The Immediate Assignment on TCH feature is implemented in the Base
Station Controller (BSC).

1.2 Background
Call set-up signalling is normally made on an SDCCH. With this
feature, the signalling can be made on both an SDCCH and a TCH.
Since the required bit rate during call set-up is quite low, it is possible
to map eight SDCCHs on one timeslot, hence using the physical
channel more efficiently. The SDCCH and TCH resource dimensioning
is a compromise between low SDCCH congestion and high TCH
capacity. Allowing both channel types at immediate assignment will
create an overflow mechanism, making the dimensioning of resources
less critical.

1.3 What can be achieved


The Immediate Assignment on TCH feature takes the connection type
into consideration. For speech/data connections, the operator can choose
between three general strategies:
• Immediate assignment on TCH is not allowed.
This strategy means that only an SDCCH can be allocated at
immediate assignment.
• Immediate assignment on TCH as last preference.
A TCH may only be allocated at immediate assignment when
there is no idle SDCCH available. The dimensioning of SDCCHs
becomes less critical and the number of SDCCHs can be reduced
in favour of more TCHs. By the trunking efficiency obtained,
there is a capacity increase.
• Immediate assignment on TCH as a first preference.
A TCH is allocated as a first preference in some cases of
immediate assignment. The intention is to keep the channel at
assignment. With this strategy an SDCCH may only be allocated
when there is no idle TCH available. The number of SDCCHs
can be reduced in favour of more TCHs. However, the load on
the TCHs will increase.
For signalling only connections, the strategy is to always allocate an
SDCCH. Signalling only connections are for example: location
updating, detach of International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI),

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Feature overview

supplementary services and Short Message Service (SMS). In addition,


some MSs might support signalling on SDCCH only and not speech.

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Technical description

2 Technical description
2.1 General
When a connection is to be established, a channel for the call set-up
signalling has to be allocated. This is done at the immediate assignment
procedure. Depending on the connection type, the Immediate
Assignment on TCH feature allows the signalling to be performed on
both a TCH and an SDCCH.
In general, a TCH is never allocated at immediate assignment if the
BSC has enough information to the determine that the connection type
requires an SDCCH for signalling. However in some cases, a TCH may
be allocated for signalling only connections when the BSC lacks
sufficient information about the connection type. It is thus not possible
to guarantee that a TCH is allocated for only speech/data connections if
the "TCH as a first preference" strategy is selected. This can be
controlled by the operator to some extents, see Section 2.3-2.4.
At immediate assignment, the MS sends a message "Channel Request"
to the BSC (via the BTS). The message contains the information
element "Establishment Cause". Among things, the Establishment
Cause provides an indication whether the connection type is signalling
or speech/data. The decision whether to allocate an SDCCH or a TCH
at immediate assignment is based on this information. A problem is that
the range of Establishment Causes supported by GSM phase 1 MS is
not always sufficient.
At immediate assignment there is no channel service data, i.e. channel
type and speech version, available in the BSC. Therefore the TCH
capabilities group that supports as many channel types and speech
versions as possible, "the most adaptable", is chosen instead of "the
least adaptable" as in normal channel allocation (see ref. 1). Below it is
further described how the channels are selected.

Situation 1: An SDCCH is allocated at immediate assignment


After an immediate assignment on SDCCH, an assignment of a TCH is
performed for speech/data connections. However, the connection
remains on the allocated SDCCH if it is a signalling only connection.

Situation 2: A TCH is allocated at immediate assignment


The first attempt is to allocate a TCH Half Rate (TCH/HR) if dual rate
capability is indicated. With no idle TCH/HR, an attempt to allocate a
TCH Full Rate (TCH/FR) is made.
For a speech/data connection that requests maintained channel rate, only
a change of channel mode from signalling to speech/data is performed.
The connection is kept on the allocated TCH. If another rate or more
than one channel (for high speed data connections) is requested, an
attempt to allocate another channel with the requested rate will be
made.
For some parameter settings, a TCH may be allocated instead of an
SDCCH for SMS or supplementary services, see Section 2.4 on page
8 . In these cases, the connection remains on the allocated TCH, but

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Technical description

the signalling for supplementary services is carried by the Fast


Associated Control Channel (FACCH) while the SMS is carried by the
Slow Associated Control Channel (SACCH). Location updating or IMSI
detach can never be assigned a TCH since these Establishment Causes
can be distinguished from MS originating calls.
Immediate assignment on TCH/FR only can be obtained by using the
Differential Channel Allocation feature (see ref. 2). All TCH/HR are
made inaccessible (INAC = 100) at the immediate assignment.

2.2 Phase 1 and phase 2 MSs


The BSC can not always decide from the Establishment Cause whether
the connection is for speech/data or signalling. For a GSM phase 2 MS
making a channel request, the BSC can make a more accurate decision
than for a GSM phase 1 MS. The GSM phase 2 MSs have a larger range
of Establishment Causes and it is possible to distinguish MS originated
SMS and supplementary services from MS originated speech/data calls.
With GSM phase 2 Establishment Causes, it is also possible to
distinguish MS terminated speech/data calls from MS terminated SMS.
Depending on its capability, a phase 2 MS can respond with a suitable
Establishment Cause if the information element "Channel Needed" is
included in the paging message. Channel Needed is sent from the
Mobile Switching Centre (MSC) to the MS via the BSC (see ref. 1).
However, the Ericsson MSC does not support Channel Needed.

2.3 Immediate assignment strategy


The dimensioning principles for the SDCCH and TCH are the main
reason for selecting the immediate assignment strategy. If the "TCH as
first preference" strategy is selected, additional considerations must be
taken into account. These considerations include the number of phase 1
and phase 2 MSs, the amount of signalling traffic (primarily SMS) in
the network and whether the MSC supports Channel Needed.
For example, consider a situation with a lot of phase 1 MSs and a large
amount of SMS traffic in the network. If "TCH as first preference" is
selected, many SMS messages will be transmitted on TCH (using
SACCH) since the BSC has not enough information to make the
optimal allocation. This effect can be reduced by selecting a suitable
channel allocation profile (see below and ref. 1), but with the undesired
behaviour of not allocating a TCH in many speech/data traffic cases.

2.4 Channel allocation profiles


In the BSC, the channel allocation algorithm selects and allocates a
suitable channel. Each cell is, with parameter CHAP, assigned to one
of eight Channel Allocation Profiles (CHAPs). CHAP specifies the
channel allocation strategy to be used in all possible traffic situations,
see ref. 1. The strategies CHAP = 0, 5 and 7 are identical for the
immediate assignment procedure and they do not allow immediate
assignment on TCH at all. CHAP = 1 and 6 are also identical for the
immediate assignment procedures and they mean that a TCH should be
assigned as a last resort. CHAP = 2 is the "TCH as first preference"
strategy for GSM phase 2 MS dominated networks supporting Channel
Needed. CHAP = 3 is the "TCH as a first preference" for GSM phase 2

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Technical description

MS dominated networks not supporting Channel Needed. CHAP = 4 is


the "TCH as a first preference" strategy for networks dominated by
GSM phase 1 MSs. The CHAP to select, depends on the number of
GSM phase 1 and phase 2 MSs, the amount of SMS traffic and the
channel allocation strategy for overlaid/underlaid subcells (e.g. using
overlaid subcells as last resort, see ref. 1 and the Overlaid/Underlaid
Subcells feature ref. 3).

2.5 Emergency calls


The Establishment Cause for emergency calls is unique for both GSM
phase 1 and 2 MSs. A TCH can therefore be allocated for emergency
calls without any confusion with SMS for phase 1 MSs. The CHAP =
4 "TCH as a first preference" is intended for networks dominated by
GSM phase 1 MSs. In such a network, this has the effect that
practically all calls except emergency calls are allocated an SDCCH as
a first choice at immediate assignment (the BSC has not sufficient
information to determine the connection type).

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Technical description

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Engineering Guidelines

3 Engineering Guidelines
See ref. 1.

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Engineering Guidelines

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Parameters

4 Parameters
4.1 Main controlling parameters
CHAP defines a Channel Allocation Profile. The parameter is set per
cell. The three immediate assignment strategies are supported by
CHAPs, see below:

CHAP = 0, 5, or 7: No immediate assignment on TCH


CHAP = 1 or 6: TCH last (SDCCH first)
CHAP = 2, 3 or 4: TCH first

The CHAPs are described in detail in the Channel Administration


feature (ref. 1).

4.2 Value ranges and default values


Table 1 Controlling parameter

Parameter name Default value Recommended value Value range Unit


CHAP 0 1 0 to 7

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Parameters

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References

5 References
1 User Description, Channel Administration.
2 User Description, Differential Channel Allocation.
3 User Description, Overlaid/Underlaid Subcells.

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