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PWS1 - Wireless Communication Solutions (GSM/WCDMA) 

PWS1 - Wireless Communication


Solutions (GSM/WCDMA)

Course documentation
April 2009

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PWS1 - Wireless Communication Solutions (GSM/WCDMA)

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PWS1 - Wireless Communication Solutions (GSM/WCDMA) 

PWS1 - Wireless Communication


Solutions (GSM/WCDMA)

PWS1 - WIRELESS COMMUNICATION SOLUTIONS (GSM/WCDMA) .................................................... 3

PART 1 - INTRODUCTION TO GSM NETWORKS ....................................................................................... 7


1 GSM (GLOBAL SYSTEM FOR MOBILE COMMUNICATION) ............................................................................ 9
1.1 Mobile Communications .................................................................................................................... 10
1.2 Mobile Communications Evolution ................................................................................................... 10
1.3 GSM History ...................................................................................................................................... 12
1.4 GSM Specifications ........................................................................................................................... 14
1.5 GSM Phases....................................................................................................................................... 15
1.5.1 Phase 1 ....................................................................................................................................................... 16
1.5.2 Phase 2 ....................................................................................................................................................... 16
1.5.3 Phase 2+ ..................................................................................................................................................... 16
1.6 GSM Main Characteristics ................................................................................................................ 18
2 GSM ARCHITECTURE................................................................................................................................ 19
2.1 Introduction ....................................................................................................................................... 20
2.2 Mobile Station (MS)........................................................................................................................... 21
2.1.1 The Mobile Station (MS) ........................................................................................................................... 21
2.1.2 GSM Identities ........................................................................................................................................... 23
2.2.1 Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) ............................................................................................................. 27
2.2.2 Mobile Equipment (ME) ............................................................................................................................ 27
2.3 Base Station System (BSS) ................................................................................................................. 30
2.3.1 Base Transceiver Station (BTS) ................................................................................................................. 30
2.3.2 Base Station Controller (BSC) ................................................................................................................... 31
2.4 Switching System (SS) ........................................................................................................................ 32
2.4.1 Mobile Switching Center (MSC)................................................................................................................ 32
2.4.2 Gateway Mobile Switching Center (GMSC) .............................................................................................. 34
2.4.3 Home Location Register (HLR) ................................................................................................................. 34
2.4.4 Visitor Location Register (VLR) ................................................................................................................ 36
2.4.5 Authentication Center (AC) ....................................................................................................................... 37
2.4.6 Equipment Identification Register (EIR) .................................................................................................... 38
2.4.7 Data Transmission Inter-working (DTI) ..................................................................................................... 38
2.4.8 Message Center (MC) ................................................................................................................................ 39
2.5 Operations Sub-System (OSS) ........................................................................................................... 40
2.5.1 Network Management Center (NMC) ........................................................................................................ 40
2.5.2 Operations and Maintenance Center (OMC) .............................................................................................. 41
2.6 GSM Interfaces and protocols ........................................................................................................... 42
3 GSM AIR INTERFACE ................................................................................................................................ 47

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3.1 Analog and Digital Transmission ...................................................................................................... 48


3.1.1 Analog Information .................................................................................................................................... 48
3.1.2 Digital Information .................................................................................................................................... 48
3.1.3 Advantages of Digital techniques .............................................................................................................. 49
3.2 Modulation Techniques ...................................................................................................................... 50
3.3 Frequency allocation ......................................................................................................................... 51
3.4 Time Division Multiple Access TDMA ............................................................................................... 54
3.5 GSM radio transmission process ....................................................................................................... 55
3.5.1 Sampling .................................................................................................................................................... 55
3.5.2 Quantization ............................................................................................................................................... 56
3.5.3 Coding........................................................................................................................................................ 56
3.6.4 Segmentation and Speech Coding .............................................................................................................. 57
3.6.5 Channel Coding ......................................................................................................................................... 58
3.6.6 Interleaving ................................................................................................................................................ 59
3.6.7 Ciphering / Encryption ............................................................................................................................... 61
3.6.8 Burst Formatting ........................................................................................................................................ 62
3.6.9 Modulation and Transmission .................................................................................................................... 63
3.6 GSM Radio transmission problems .................................................................................................... 64
3.6.1 Shadowing (Normal fading) ....................................................................................................................... 64
3.6.2 Multi-path Fading ...................................................................................................................................... 65
3.6.3 Time Dispersion ......................................................................................................................................... 67
3.6.4 Time Delay ................................................................................................................................................ 68
3.7 Frequency hopping ............................................................................................................................ 70
3.8 Discontinuous transmission (DTX) .................................................................................................... 72
3.9 GSM Power Classes ........................................................................................................................... 72
3.10 Power Control.................................................................................................................................... 72
4 GSM COVERAGE AND CELL PLANNING .................................................................................................... 74
4.1 GSM Coverage Plan .......................................................................................................................... 75
4.2 Cell Geometry .................................................................................................................................... 75
4.3 Antennas............................................................................................................................................. 77
4.4 Frequency Re–use .............................................................................................................................. 78
4.5 Interference problems due to frequency reuse ................................................................................... 80
4.5.1 Co-Channel Interference ............................................................................................................................ 81
4.5.2 Adjacent Channel Interference ................................................................................................................... 82
4.6 Cell Classifications ............................................................................................................................ 83
4.7 Introduction to Cell Planning ............................................................................................................ 86
5 GSM CHANNELS ....................................................................................................................................... 89
5.1 Physical Channels and Logical Channels.......................................................................................... 90
5.2 Traffic Channels ................................................................................................................................ 91
5.3 Control Channels ............................................................................................................................... 92
5.3.1 Broadcast CHannels ................................................................................................................................... 93
5.3.2 Common Control Channels ........................................................................................................................ 93
5.3.3 Dedicated Control Channels ...................................................................................................................... 94
5.4 TDMA Burst Structure ....................................................................................................................... 94
5.5 Mapping of Logical Channels onto Physical Time Slots ................................................................... 96
5.6 TDMA Frame Structure ..................................................................................................................... 97
6 MESSAGE FLOWS ...................................................................................................................................... 99
6.1 Switching on the Mobile Phone ....................................................................................................... 100
6.2 Location Area Update ...................................................................................................................... 102
6.3 Handover ......................................................................................................................................... 104
6.3.1 Intra Cell Handover.................................................................................................................................. 105
6.3.2 Intra BSC Handover ................................................................................................................................. 106
6.3.3 Inter BSC / Intra MSC Handover ............................................................................................................. 106
6.3.4 Inter MSC Handover ................................................................................................................................ 108
6.4 MTC (Mobile Terminated Call) ....................................................................................................... 110
6.5 MOC (Mobile Originated Call) ....................................................................................................... 112
6.6 Short Messages ................................................................................................................................ 114
6.6.1 Short Message Delivery Process .............................................................................................................. 115
7 SERVICES................................................................................................................................................. 116
7.1 7.2 GSM Services ............................................................................................................................ 116
7.2 Services Categories .......................................................................................................................... 116

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7.2.1 Basic telecommunication services ............................................................................................................ 116


7.2.2 Supplementary services ............................................................................................................................ 117
7.3 GSM Fax and Data Calls ................................................................................................................ 117
7.4 CAMEL ............................................................................................................................................ 118
7.2 Charging .......................................................................................................................................... 120
7.6 Structures for Tariffs and Charging ................................................................................................ 120
7.6.1 Network Access Component .................................................................................................................... 120
7.6.2 Network Utilization Component .............................................................................................................. 121
7.6.3 Call Components ............................................................................................................................ 121
7.6.4 Billing Gateway ....................................................................................................................................... 121
8 GSM EVOLUTION .................................................................................................................................... 123
8.1 HSCSD............................................................................................................................................. 124
8.2 WAP ................................................................................................................................................. 125
8.3 GPRS ............................................................................................................................................... 126
8.4 EDGE .............................................................................................................................................. 128
8.4.1 Technical fundamentals ............................................................................................................................ 128
8.5 The Third Generation of Mobile Systems ........................................................................................ 130
8.4.2 Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA) ........................................................................... 131
8.4.3 UMTS Evolution ...................................................................................................................................... 131
8.6 The Future - the Fourth Generation ................................................................................................ 132
PART 2 - INTRODUCTION TO UMTS NETWORKS.................................................................................. 135
1 INTRODUCTION ......................................................................................................................................... 137
2 UMTS (UNIVERSAL MOBILE TELECOMMUNICATION SYSTEM) ............................................................... 141
2.1 General presentation of UMTS ........................................................................................................ 142
2.1.1 World context of standardization ............................................................................................................. 142
2.1.2 The GMM Concept (Global Multi-media Mobility) ................................................................................ 144
2.1.3 The introduction of multimedia services .................................................................................................. 146
2.1.4 The convergence of technologies ............................................................................................................. 146
2.1.5 Plan of UMTS technology ........................................................................................................................ 147
2.1.6 GSM/GPRS/EDGE – UMTS general evolution ....................................................................................... 148
3 GENERAL STRUCTURE OF THE UMTS .................................................................................................... 151
3.1 Structure of an UMTS Network ....................................................................................................... 152
3.1.1 CN (Core Network) .................................................................................................................................. 154
3.2 The Core Packet switching (PS) and the Core Circuit switching (CS) ............................................ 156
3.3 Core Interfaces ................................................................................................................................ 158
3.4 CS Domain (Rel. 4).......................................................................................................................... 160
3.5 PS Domain (Rel. 4) .......................................................................................................................... 163
3.6 ATM Signalling ................................................................................................................................ 169
3.7 SIGTRAN ......................................................................................................................................... 172
3.8 IP network and UMTS ..................................................................................................................... 174
3.9 Mobile IP ......................................................................................................................................... 176
3.10 QoS support ..................................................................................................................................... 178
3.11 IPv6 migration ................................................................................................................................. 180
3.12 UTRAN Interfaces ........................................................................................................................... 181
3.12.1 The point of Iu reference .......................................................................................................................... 181
3.12.2 General principles of the Iu interface .................................................................................................. 181
3.12.3 The Iur interface ..................................................................................................................................... 186
3.12.4 The Iub interface .................................................................................................................................... 188
3.12.5 Structure of the radio interface ............................................................................................................ 190
3.13 Functions of UTRAN ....................................................................................................................... 196
3.14 Radio network architecture: UTRAN (UMTS Terrestrial Radio Access Network) ......................... 197
3.14.1 Definition of the different elements of the UTRAN ............................................................................ 198
3.14.2 Role of the serving RNC ....................................................................................................................... 202
3.15 UMTS Services ................................................................................................................................ 210
3.15.1 Preliminaries ........................................................................................................................................... 210
3.15.2 Concept of Services .............................................................................................................................. 214
4 UMTS RADIO INTERFACE ....................................................................................................................... 235
4.1 The principle of the CDMA/FDMA/TDMA access methods ............................................................ 236
4.2 FDD and TDD ................................................................................................................................. 238
4.3 The W-CDMA (FDD mode) ............................................................................................................. 240

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4.3.1 Summary of the Main Parameters in the WCDMA Used in the UMTS .......................................... 242
4.3.2 The advantages of WCDMA ................................................................................................................ 244
4.3.3 Spreading & despreading..................................................................................................................... 246
4.3.4 Principles of CDMA codes/The Spreading Factor ............................................................................ 252
4.3.5 Relation between CDMA codes and Times Slots ............................................................................. 253
4.3.6 The allocation of spreading codes ...................................................................................................... 254
4.3.7 Scrambling and modulation ................................................................................................................. 255
4.3.8 Logical Channels ................................................................................................................................... 265
4.3.9 Transport Channels .............................................................................................................................. 266
5 RADIO ALGORITHMS IN UMTS ................................................................................................................ 271
5.1 Power Control.................................................................................................................................. 272
5.2 Details of the connection to the UMTS network .............................................................................. 276
5.2.1 Random Access ........................................................................................................................................ 276
5.3 Handover Principles in the UMTS ................................................................................................... 278
5.3.1 Handover detection .................................................................................................................................. 279
5.3.2 Reasons for handover failure ................................................................................................................... 280
5.3.3 Performance Indicators ............................................................................................................................ 280
5.3.4 Teletraffic and measurement of performance........................................................................................... 280
5.3.5 Various types of handover (UMTS) ......................................................................................................... 282
5.4 Handover from UTRAN to GSM ...................................................................................................... 286
5.5 Handover from UMTS to GSM ........................................................................................................ 288
6 CALL SEQUENCES ................................................................................................................................... 291
6.1 MOC (Mobile Originated Call) ....................................................................................................... 292
6.2 MTC (Mobile Terminated call) ........................................................................................................ 296
6.3 PDP Context Activation ................................................................................................................... 298
6.4 Location Area Update ...................................................................................................................... 300
6.5 Routing Area Update ....................................................................................................................... 302

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1 GSM (Global System for Mobile


Communication)

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1.1 Mobile Communications


Mobile telecommunications is one of the fastest growing and most demanding of all
telecommunications technologies.
Currently, it represents an increasingly high percentage of all new telephone
subscriptions worldwide. In many cases, cellular solutions successfully compete with
traditional wire line networks and cordless telephones. In the future, cellular systems
employing digital technology will become the universal method of telecommunication.

1.2 Mobile Communications Evolution


Before GSM networks there were public mobile radio networks (cellular). They
normally used analog technologies, which varied from country to country and from
manufacturer to another. These analog networks did not comply with any uniform
standard. There was no way to use a single mobile phone from one country to
another. The speech quality in most networks was not satisfactory. These networks
are considered to be the first generation of cellular technologies (NMT).
The main standards and the main markets in which they are used are summarized in
the following table.

Year Standard Mobile Telephone System Tech. Primary Markets


1981 NMT-450 Nordic Telephony Analogue and M. East
1983 AMPS Advanced Mobile Phone System Analogue N& S America
1985 TACS Total Access Communication System Analogue Europe and
1986 NMT 900 Nordic Telephony Analogue N. & S. America

F
igure 1 - First Generation of cellular technologies

Since the development of NMT 450 in 1981, many standards for mobile
communication have been developed throughout the world. Each mobile standard
has been developed to meet the particular requirements of the country or interest
groups involved in its specification. For this reason, although a standard may be
suitable for one country, it may not be suitable for another. These networks are
considered the second generation of cellular technologies.
The main standards and the main markets in which they are used are summarized in
the following table.

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Year Standard Mobile Telephone System Tech. Primary Markets

1991 GSM Global System for Digital World Wide

TDMA Time Division Multiple Access


1991 Digital N& S America
(D-AMPS) (Digital AMPS)

1992 GSM1800 Global System for Digital

1993 CDMAOne Code Division Multiple Access One Digital N. America and

1994 PDC Personal Digital Cellular Digital

1995 PCS1900 Personal Communication Services Digital

Figure 2 - Second Generation of cellular technologies

GSM became popular very quickly because it provided improved speech quality and,
through a uniform international standard, made it possible to use a single telephone
number and mobile unit around the world. The European Telecommunications
Standardization Institute (ETSI) adopted the GSM standard in 1991, and GSM is now
used all around the world.
The second generation includes also enhancements to GSM: High Speed Circuit
Switched Data (HSCSD), General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) and Enhanced Data
rates for GSM Evolution (EDGE). These enhancements are called the generation
2G+ or 2,5.

GSM has a straightforward, cost-effective migration path to third generation (3G)


through GPRS, EDGE and UMTS/HSPA, as well as beyond 3G via the HSPA
Evolution (HSPA+), Long Term Evolution (LTE) and System Architecture Evolution
(SAE) initiatives. Each step in the GSM-based migration path leverages the network
infrastructure deployed for the previous steps and is 100% backward compatible. For
example, a UMTS phone can provide voice and data service when connected to a
GSM network. The GSM family of technologies also provides a viable, flexible 3G-
migration path for CDMA and TDMA operators.

The third generation cellular networks, is the present digital network generation,
offers besides voice, data transmission speeds up to 2Mbps. Universal Mobile
Telecommunications System (UMTS) is one of the mobile communications systems
being developed within the International Telecommunications Union ITU framework
known as International Mobile Telecommunications IMT-2000. As like as the second
generation, third generation also includes enhancements to UMTS: High Speed
Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA), High Speed Uplink Packet Access (HSUPA) and
High Speed Packet Access which can offer data rates over 28.8Mbps. These
enhancements are called the generation 3G+ or 3,5.
The fourth generation is being developed and will offer data transmission speeds up
to 1Gbps on Non-Mobility situations and 100Mbps on Mobility situations. There were
defined two main standards: LTE (Long Term Evolution) by 3rd Generation

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Partnership Project (3GPP), and WIMAX (Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave


Access) by IEEE (Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers).

Figure 3 - Mobile Communications Evolution

1.3 GSM History


Global System for Mobile communication is the European digital cellular
telecommunications standard. GSM is the current digital mobile telephony standard
specified by the European Telecommunication Standards Institute (ETSI) and
provides a common standard that means cellular subscribers can use their mobile
telephones all over Europe and increasingly throughout the world.
The following figure shows the milestones of GSM evolution:

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Figure 4 - GSM Evolution

Nowadays, more than 3.7 billion people worldwide use the Global System for Mobile
Communications (GSM) family of technologies, as of 1Q 2009. GSM is the most
widely used wireless technology in the world, available in more than 220 countries
and territories worldwide.
GSM's market share has grown exponentially over the past several years. It took 12
years for GSM to achieve 1 billion customers (February 2004), but only 2.5 years to
pass 2 billion (June 2006). Approximately 1,000 people worldwide sign up for GSM
service every minute.

Figure 5 - GSM Worldwide (orange areas)

Because GSM provides a common standard, cellular subscribers can use their
telephones over the entire GSM service area, which includes all the countries around

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the world where the GSM system is used as long as the administrative part is signed,
the roaming agreement.

The different GSM evolution paths are shown in the next Figure. The data rates are
the maximum data rates theoretically provided by different systems.

Figure 6 - Evolution paths of GSM towards third generation networks

1.4 GSM Specifications


GSM was designed to be platform-independent. The GSM specifications do not
specify the hardware requirements, but instead specify the network functions and
interfaces in detail. This allows hardware designers to be creative in how they provide
the functionality. At the same time it is possible for operators to buy equipment from
different suppliers.
The GSM recommendations consist of twelve series, which are listed, in the table
below. Different working parties and a number of expert groups wrote these series.
All these groups were organized by ETSI.

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01 General
02 Service aspects
03 Network aspects
04 MS - BSS interface and protocol
05 Physical layer on the radio path
06 Speech coding specification
07 Terminal adaptor for MS
08 BSS - MSC interface
09 Network inter-working
10 Service inter-working
11 Equipment and type approval specifications
12 Operation and maintenance

Figure 7 - GSM Recommendations

The GSM 1800 section was written as a delta part within the GSM recommendations,
describing only those differences between GSM 900 and GSM 1800. GSM 1900 is
based on GSM 1800 and has been adapted to meet the American National
Standards Institute (ANSI) standard.

ETSI (European Telecommunications Standard Institute) was founded by the former


CEPT (Conference Européene des Postes et Telecommunications). ETSI is financed
by the European Union (EU) and contributions of its members. It is a co-operation
between all the major telecommunication suppliers and operator companies.
ETSI‘s task is to elaborate unified standards for telecommunications equipment in
Europe.

1.5 GSM Phases


Just because the lack of time and group developers to complete standards
specifications development for the entire range of GSM services and features as
originally planned, it was decided that GSM would be released in phases with phase
1 consisting of a limited set of services and features. Each new phase builds on the
services offered by existing phases.
As example, is shown in the next sub sections the three main phases of GSM
development.

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1.5.1 Phase 1
This Phase contains the basic services of GSM, including: Voice telephony,
International roaming, Basic fax/data services (up to 9.6 Kbits/s), Call forwarding, Call
barring and Short Message Service.
Phase 1 also incorporated features such as ciphering and Subscriber Identity Module
(SIM) cards. Phase 1 specifications were then closed and cannot be modified.

1.5.2 Phase 2
Additional features were introduced in this phase, including: Advice of charge, Calling
line identification, Call waiting, Call hold, Conference calling, Closed user groups and
Additional data communications capabilities

1.5.3 Phase 2+
This phase covers multiple subscriber numbers and a variety of business oriented
features, Multiple service profiles, Private numbering plans, Access to Centrex
services, Inter-working with GSM 1800, GSM 1900 and the Digital, Enhanced
Cordless Telecommunications (DECT) standard.

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Phase 2+

Phase 2

Phase 1

1989 1999 1991 1992 1993 1994 1995

Idea

Standardization

Implementation/Usage

Figure 8 - GSM Phases

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1.6 GSM Main Characteristics


GSM, which was first introduced in 1991 to replace 1G technology and solve the
number of incompatibility between networks and provide common 2G technology, is
the leading digital cellular systems. Originally a European standard for digital mobile
telephony, GSM has become the world's most widely used mobile system and it is in
use all around the world. GSM networks operate on the 900 MHz and 1800 MHz
waveband in Europe, Asia and Australia, and on the MHz 1900 waveband in North
America and in parts of Latin America and Africa.

The main benefits of GSM include:


 Support for international roaming;
 Distinction between user and device identification;
 Excellent speech quality;
 Wide range of services;
 Interworking (e.g. with ISDN, DECT);
 Extensive security features;
 Specifications are open-ended and can be built upon to meet future
requirements (GSM was the stepping-stone to 3G networks).

GSM also stands out from other technologies with its wide range of services:
 Telephony;
 Asynchronous and synchronous data services (2.4/4.8/9.6 kbit/s);
 Access to packet data network (X.25);
 Telematic services (SMS, fax, videotext, etc.);
 Many value-added features (call forwarding, caller ID, voice mailbox);
 E-mail and Internet connections.

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2 GSM Architecture

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2.1 Introduction
The GSM network is divided into two systems, Switching System (SS) and Base
Station System (BSS). Each of these systems is composed of a number of functional
units, which are individual components of the mobile network. There‘s also the
operations sub-system (OSS), which controls the functioning of the NSS and BSS.

Figure 9 - GSM Architecture

In addition, as with all telecommunications networks, GSM networks are operated,


maintained and managed from computerized centers. Also an accurate and efficient
Billing system is an important and essential part of the system.
Another GSM services can be integrated with the basic network systems to add
valued services to the GSM networks users. Such systems can be: Short Message
System, voice mailbox services, Prepaid System, and Data Transmission System.

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2.2 Mobile Station (MS)


The Mobile Station may be referred to as a ―handset‖, a ―mobile‖ or a ―portable
Terminal‖, is the interface between the user and the network. The MS is based on
two independent parts:
 Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) card;
 Mobile Equipment (ME).

In some applications (data communications in particular), an MS can also be a


terminal that acts as a GSM interface, e.g. for a laptop computer.
Besides providing a transceiver (TRX) for transmission and reception of voice and
data, the mobile also performs a number of very demanding tasks such as
authentication, handover, encoding and channel encoding.
The next figure provides a simplified block diagram of a GSM transmitter and
receiver.

Speech Channel Burst GMSK


Encoder Interleaver Ciphering Assembler Modulator
Encoder

Recovered RF Tx
User Data

Channel Deinter Dechiph Equalize


RF Rx Channel
Decoder leaving ering /Demod

Speech Recovered
Decoder Speech

Figure 10 - Block diagram of a GSM transmitter and receiver

2.1.1 The Mobile Station (MS)


The MS consists of the Mobile Equipment (ME) from a vendor and a Subscriber
Identity Module (SIM) provided and programmed by the network operator.
 ME is uniquely identified by an International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI).

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 An International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) uniquely identifies a mobile


subscriber or MS to a specific GSM PLMN. IMSI is programmed into the SIM,
which can be inserted into any ME. The SIM has all the information related to
the mobile subscriber.

IMSI is used between the MS and the MSC at the time of the initial registration of an
MS visiting the MSC service area.
Thereafter IMSI is not normally used over the radio path for security reasons. On
registration, the MSC allocates a Temporary Mobile subscriber Identity (TMSI),
which is also changed from time to time. TMSI is used by MSC for paging MS. MS
uses TMSI during location updating and mobile-originated calls.

GSM subscribers are also publicly identified by Mobile Station ISDN number
(MSISDN). A caller uses MSISDN to call a mobile subscriber. The MSISDN
consists of: Country Code (CC) + National Destination Code (NDC) + Subscriber
Number (SN)

The call is routed to the home PLMN of the mobile subscriber. It is the HLR that
translates the MSISDN to IMSI, knows the MSC/VLR service area where the MS is
currently located & helps in routing the call to the specific MSC.

Another identity known as Mobile Subscriber Roaming Number (MSRN) is used


internally in the PLMN to route the incoming call to the specific MSC.

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2.1.2 GSM Identities

 Mobile Station ISDN Number (MSISDN) (E.164)

CC NDC SN
National mobile number

CC Country Code (1~3 digits)


NDC National Destination code (2-3 digits)
Identifies the GSM PLMN Area Code
SN Subscriber Number (variable lenghth)

 International Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) (E.212)


IMSI (Max 15 digits)

MCC MNC MSIN


National MSI

MCC Mobile Country Code (3 digits)


MNC Mobile Network Code (2 digits)
MSIN Mobile Subscriber Identification Number (10 digits)

 Mobile Station Roaming Number (GSM Rec.)

CC NDC SN
SN A Subscriber Number, excluded from the numbering plan affected to the subscribers. In
effect the address of the MSC/VLR node within the PLMN where the subscriber is
roaming. It is needed to route mobile terminating calls

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 Temporary Mobile Station Identity (TMSI) (GSM Rec.)

Max 4 octets long

TMSI is only of local significance.

 International Mobile Equipment Identity (IMEI) (GSM Rec.)

TAC FAC SNR Sp

TAC Type Approval Code 6 digits


(Central GSM body)
FAC Final Assembly Code 2 digits
(Manufacturer)
SNR Serial Number 6 digits
Unique number within a TAC + FAC
Sp Spare 1 digit
(Future Use)

 Location Area Identity (LAI) (GSM Rec.)

MCC MNC LAC


MCC Mobile Country Code 3 digits
(As in IMSI)
MNC Mobile Network Code 2 digits
(As in IMSI)
LAC Location Area Code 16 bits
(PLMN operator)
LAI is used for location updating of MS.
All cells in a location area broadcast the LAI.
MS recognizes when it enters a new LA.

 Cell Global Identity (CGI) (GSM Rec.)

MCC MNC LAC CI


CI Cell Identity 16 bits
(PLMN Operator)

Each cell broadcasts its CGI. MS listens to this information in the current &
surrounding cells.

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 Base Station Identity Code (BSIC) (GSM Rec.)

NCC BCC

NCC PLMN Colour Code 3 bits (xyy)


x operator
yy country
(to distinguish between neighbouring operators)
BCC Base Station Colour Code 3 bits
(to distinguish between neighbouring base stations)

 Global Title (GT) (E.164)

CC NDC SN

GT is an address such as dialed digits, say MSISDN, as per CCITT/ITU Rec. E.164.
The SN can be a node address. GT is used in the No.7 SS to route a message to a
remote node without a circuit-switched connection. SCCP with routing function is
used at the originating & intermediate nodes. The GT is contained as a parameter
inside the message. For example the first two digits in the subscriber number (SN) in
the MSISDN identifies an HLR. The GMSC function identifies an appropriate HLR
from the received MSISDN.

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 Mobile Global Title (MGT) (GSM Rec.)

CC NDC MSIN
E.164 E.212

MSIN Mobile Station Identification Number 10 digits


MSIN identifies the MS & also its HLR
CC/NDC identifies the country & the PLMN & possibly the HLR where the MS
is registered.

IMSI & MGT


When an MS is turned on in (or enters) the MSC/VLR service area of a PLMN, the
MS has to be registered as a new visitor in the VLR. The VLR needs to address the
HLR where the subscription information of the mobile subscriber is registered.
The information obtained from the MS for this purpose is IMSI consisting of MCC +
MNC + MSIN.
There are two possibilities.
1 - The HLR is in the same PLMN as the VLR. That is the MS is in the home PLMN.
Analysis of MCC + MNC identifies this case. Further analysis of MNC itself or MSIN
identifies the HLR where the subscriber profile of the MS is registered.
2 - Analysis of MCC + MNC indicates another PLMN, possibly in another country.
Then the VLR has to send a message via the public national/international-signaling
network to the HLR of the home PLMN. This has to go as an SCCP message for
which the IMSI must be converted to MGT.

Conversion of IMSI to MGT

IMSI MCC MNC MSIN

MGT CC NDC MSIN

Translation of IMSI to MGT in the VLR


CC is derived directly from the MCC translation.
NDC is derived either directly from the MNC or in conjunction with the initial digits of
the MSIN.
The MSIN from IMSI is directly mapped in to the MSIN part of the MGT.
This translation is done in the application layer of the VLR.

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2.2.1 Subscriber Identity Module (SIM)


A SIM card is an electronic smart card, which stores information about the
subscription. It contains information about the subscriber and must be plugged into
the ME to enable the subscriber to use the network. With the exception of emergency
calls, MSs can only be operated if a valid SIM is present.
SIMs comes in two sizes, the ‖ID-1 SIM‖ and the ‖Plug-in SIM‖. The logical and
electrical interfaces are identical for both types of SIM.
Below are the standard dimensions of the 2 SIM card types.

Figure 11 - SIM Card Sizes

Each SIM card has a unique identification number called IMSI (international mobile
subscriber identity). With this number, is possible to identify the mobile subscriber on
the radio path and through the GSM network. This identity is stored in the Subscriber
Identity Module (SIM), as well as in the network.

The use of the IMSI enables a mobile belonging to our GSM network to other GSM
networks, nationally or internationally and is able to identify itself independently of the
telephone numbering plan of the network in which the Mobile Station is actually
located.

2.2.2 Mobile Equipment (ME)


Mobile equipment is used by the subscriber when it needs to access a desirable
network. The subscriber can use any kind of electronic device such as telephone, fax
machine or portable computer, PDA, etc. that hardware has an identity number totally
associated with it and unique for that particular device and permanently stored in it.
This identity number is called International mobile equipment identity (IMEI).

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The IMEI uniquely identifies a Mobile Station (MS) as a piece or assembly of


equipment. The IMEI as 15 digits and consists of the following:

MS features are defined as mandatory or optional. Mandatory features must be


implemented. The choice of implementing optional features is left up to the
manufacturers. Manufacturers are responsible for ensuring that the MS features
neither conflict with the air interface nor interfere with the network, any other MS, or
the MS itself.
Standardization of a minimum set of features is desirable to make a simple and
uniform set of MS features independent of the MS manufacturer and type. This
minimum set includes all the mandatory features. There are three categories of MS
features:

1. Basic features: are directly related to the operation of basic


telecommunication services. Each feature is classed as being mandatory or
optional.
 Mandatory features are:
 Display of called number;
 Dual Tone Multi Frequency function (DTMF);
 Indication of call progress signals;
 Country/PLMN indication;
 Country/PLMN selection;
 Service indicator;
 Subscription identity management;
 Support of A5/1 and A5/2;
 Short message indication and acknowledgment;
 Short message overflow indication;
 Emergency call capabilities.

 Optional features are:


 On/Off switch;
 DTE/DCE interface;
 ISDN ‘S‘ terminal interface;
 International access function (‗+‘ key);
 Short Message Service Cell Broadcast (SMSCB) screening.

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2. Supplementary Features:
 Charge indication;
 Control of Supplementary Services.

3. Additional Features:
 Abbreviated dialing;
 Fixed number dialing;
 Barring of outgoing calls;
 DTMF control digits separator;
 Call charge units meter;
 Selection of directory number in short messages;
 Last Numbers Dialed (LND).

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2.3 Base Station System (BSS)


The Base Station System (BSS) is responsible for all the radio-related functions in
the system. It communicates with the mobile station over the digital air interface and
with the mobile services switching centre (MSC) with 2 Mbit PCM links or via air
interface (FWA).
The Base Station Subsystem (BSS) is made up of the base station controller (BSC)
and the base transceiver station (BTS).

2.3.1 Base Transceiver Station (BTS)


BTS provides the air interface connection with the Mobile and the Network, by
providing radio coverage functions from their antennas.
The BTS GSM uses a series of radio transmitters to provide the required call
handling capacity to connect the mobiles to the cellular network. Their tasks include
channel coding/decoding and encryption/decryption.
A BTS is comprised of radio transmitters and receivers, antennas, the interface to the
PCM facility, etc.

BSS SS

Figure 12 - Base Station Sub-System and Switching

BTS functionality can be divided into the following areas:


 Radio Resources;
 Configuration and system start;
 Radio transmission;
 Radio reception;
 Signal Processing;
 Signaling Link Management;

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 Synchronization;
 Local Maintenance Handling;
 Functional Supervision and Testing.

2.3.2 Base Station Controller (BSC)


The BSC provides control for the BSS. One BSC may control the radio resources of
many BTSs. Any information required by the BTS for operation will be received via
the BSC.
The primary function of the BSC is call maintenance. The mobile stations normally
send a report of their received signal strength to the BSC every 480 ms. With this
information, the BSC decides to initiate handovers to other cells, change the BTS
transmitter power, etc.
The BSC is the central node within a BSS and co-ordinates the actions of Base
Stations. The BSC controls a major part of the radio network. Its most important task
is to ensure the highest possible utilization of the radio resources. The main
functional areas of the BSC are:
 Radio Network Management
 Traffic and event measurements
 BTS Management
 TRC Handling
 Transmission Network Management
 Handling of MS connections

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2.4 Switching System (SS)


The switching system is the set of nodes responsible for performing all switching
tasks. The Switching System consists of:
 Mobile switching centre - (MSC)
 Home location register – (HLR)
 Visitor location register – (VLR)
 Equipment identity register- (EIR)
 Authentication centre - (AC)
 Interworking function - (IWF)
 Echo canceller - (EC)
The next sub-sections will explain in detail all these elements.

2.4.1 Mobile Switching Center (MSC)


The MSC (mobile switching centre) is a part of a GSM network that is equivalent of
an exchange in a fixed network. It acts like a standard exchange in a fixed network
and additionally provides all the functionality needed to handle a mobile subscriber.
The MSC controls the switching and handovers between cells, providing commands
to each BS which is near for dropping the current call from old BS and arrange the
new one, in order to make it sure that current call should active as much as possible.

In resume, the main functions of an MSC include the following:


 Switching and call routing;
 Charging;
 Service provisioning;
 Communication with HLR;
 Communication with the VLR;
 Communication with other MSC‘s;
 Control of connected BSC‘s;
 Direct access to Internet services (for example via PSTN);
 ISDN Primary Rate Access (PRA).

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The signaling between functional entities (registers) in the network subsystem uses
Signaling System 7 (SS7). If the MSC also has a gateway function for communicating
with other networks, it is called Gateway MSC (GMSC).

The Mobile Services Switching Center (MSC)

 The primary node in a UMTS network is the MSC. It is the node, which
controls calls both to MS‘s and from MS‘s. The primary functions of an MSC
include the following:
 Administers its Base Station Controllers BSC(s).
 Switches calls to/from mobile subscribers.
 Records charging and accounting details
 Provides the gateway functionality to other networks.
 Service provisioning.
 Control of connected BSC‘s.
 Provides the gateway functionality to other networks.

Figure 13 - MSC Functions

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2.4.2 Gateway Mobile Switching Center (GMSC)


Gateway functionality enables an MSC to interrogate a HLR in order to route a
mobile terminating call.
For example, if a person connected to the PSTN wants to make a call to a GSM
mobile subscriber, then the PSTN exchange will access the GSM network by first
connecting the call to a GMSC. The GMSC requests call routing information from the
HLR that provides information about which MSC/VLR to route the call to. The same is
true of a call from an MS to another MS.
Any MSC in the mobile network can function as a gateway by integration of the
appropriate software and definition of HLR interrogation information. In effect it then
becomes a GMSC/VLR.

Gateway Mobile Switching Center (GMSC)

 Gateway functionality enables an MSC to interrogate a HLR in order to route a


mobile terminating call. It is not used in calls from MS‘s to any terminal other
than another MS.

 For example, if a person connected to the PSTN wants to make a call to a


CDMA mobile subscriber, then the PSTN exchange will access the CDMA
network by first connecting the call to a GMSC

Figure 14 - GMSC Functions

2.4.3 Home Location Register (HLR)


The home location register (HLR) is a database used for management of mobile
subscribers. In the network there can exist more than one HLR and the data is easily
accessible for all required MSCs and the VLRs in the network.
HLR is the responsible to store a whole data and contains the master database of the
total numbers of subscriber to a GSM PLMN. Subscriber has option to access either
from the IMSI or the MSISDN number.
The parameters stored in the HLR are listed below:
 Subscriber ID (IMSI and MSISDN)

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 Current subscriber VLR (current location)


 Supplementary services subscribed to
 Subscriber status (register/unregistered)
 Authentication key and AC functionality
 Temporary mobile subscriber identity (TMSI)
 Mobile Subscriber Roaming Number (MSRN)

The main information stored there concerns the location of each mobile station in
order to be able to route calls to the mobile subscribers managed by each HLR. The
HLR also maintains the services associated with each MS.One HLR can serve
several MSCs.

Home Location Register (HLR)

 The HLR is a centralized network database that stores and manages all mobile
subscriptions belonging to a specific operator.

 It acts as a permanent store for a person‘s subscription information until that


subscription is cancelled.

 The primary functions of the HLR include:


– Stores for each mobile subscriber:
• Basic subscriber categories.
• Supplementary services.
• Current location.
• Allowed/barred services.
• Authentication data.
– Subscription database management
– Controls the routing of mobile terminated calls and SMS.

Figure 15 - HLR Functions

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2.4.4 Visitor Location Register (VLR)


The main function of VLR is to store data temporary of the subscriber only as long as
the user is active in the region which is covered by the VLR. The data which is stored
at the HLR is taken by the temporary data storage VLR. The VLR provides a local
database for the subscriber wherever he is physically located within a PLMN;
This means that the MSC does not have to contact the HLR (which may be located in
another country) every time the subscriber uses a service or changes its status.
For the duration when the MS is within one MSC service area, then the VLR contains
a complete copy of the necessary subscription details

A VLR is connected to one MSC and is normally integrated into the MSC's hardware.

Visitor Location Register (VLR)

 The role of a VLR in a CDMA network is to act as a temporary storage location for
 subscription information for MSs, which are within a particular MSC service
area.
 Thus, there is one VLR for each MSC service area. This means that the MSC
does not
 have to contact the HLR (which may be located in another country) every time
the
 subscriber uses a service or changes its status.
 The VLR may be integrated with the MSC.
 For the duration when the MS is within one MSC service area, then the VLR
contains a complete copy of the necessary subscription details, including the
following information:
– Identity numbers for the subscriber
– Supplementary service information (e.g. Does the subscriber has call waiting
activated or not)
– Activity of MS (e.g. idle or busy)
– Current Location Area of MS

Figure 16 - VLR Functions

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2.4.5 Authentication Center (AC)


The authentication center (AC) is a protected database that holds a copy of the
secret key stored in each subscriber's SIM card, which is used for authentication and
encryption over the radio channel. The AC provides additional security to protect
network operators against undesirable intrusion of third parties (fraud).
It will normally be co-located with the Home location register (HLR) as it will required
to continuously access and update as necessary, the system subscriber record.

The information provided by the AC to ensure authentication processing is called a


triplet and consists of:
 A non predictable RANDom number (RAND);
 A Signed RESponse (SRES);
 A ciphering Key (Kc).

AC HLR

Figure 17 - AC Functions: Generation of Triplets in AC, HLR and VLR

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2.4.6 Equipment Identification Register (EIR)


Because the subscriber and equipment are separate in GSM, it is necessary to have
a separate authentication process for the MS equipment. This ensures, e.g. that a
mobile terminal, which has been stolen, is not able to access the network.
The EIR is the database that contains a list of all valid mobile station equipment
within the network, where each mobile station is identified by its international mobile
equipment identity (IMEI). This database is remotely accessed by the MSC in the
network.
The EIR database consists of lists of IMEIs (or arrange of IMEIs) organized as
follows:
 White list: contains those IMEIS which are known to have been assigned to
valid mobile equipment;
 Black list: contains IMEIs of mobiles which have been accepted stolen;
 Grey list: for handsets/IMEIs that are uncertain.

2.4.7 Data Transmission Inter-working (DTI)


The DTI implements the GSM Inter-Working Function (IWF). It performs data
handling functions, such as data rate conversion and provides the functions
necessary for data inter-working between GSM networks and other networks,
including:
 Data Traffic to/from PSTN;
 Data Traffic to/from ISDN;
 Data Traffic to/from PDNs;
 Data Traffic between mobiles;
 HSCSD;
 Data Connection (Circuit switched/ Packet switched).

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2.4.8 Message Center (MC)


A Message Center generates considerable revenue for a network operator. It can
provide one or more of the following messaging services:
 Voice mail
 Fax mail
 Short Message Service (SMS) text messages
 SMS Cell Broadcast (SMSCB) text messages

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2.5 Operations Sub-System (OSS)


The operation and maintenance sub-system provides a capability to manage the
GSM network remotely. It is left to the network operator to decide what capabilities
they wish it to have. The operation and maintenance system comprises of two parts:
 Network Management Center- NMC;
 Operation and Maintenance Center- OMC;

2.5.1 Network Management Center (NMC)


The Network Management Center offers the ability to provide hierarchical
regionalized network management of complete GSM system.
The main functionalities of the NMC are:
 Monitor trunk routes between nodes on the network;
 Monitor high level Alarms;
 Passes on knowledge from one OMC region to another to improve problem
solving strategies;
 Monitor OMC regions and provides assistance to OMC staff;
 Enables long term planning for the entire network.

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2.5.2 Operations and Maintenance Center (OMC)


The OMC provides a central point from which to control and monitor the other
network entities (i.e. base stations, switches, database, etc) as well as monitor the
quality of service being provided by the network as a whole.

The main functionalities of the OMC are:


 The OMC should support the following function.
 Event/ Alarm Management
 Fault Management
 Performance Management
 Configuration Management
 Security Management

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2.6 GSM Interfaces and protocols


Providing voice or data transmission quality over the radio link is only part of the
function of a cellular mobile network. A GSM mobile can seamlessly roam nationally
and internationally, requiring standardized call routing and location updating functions
in GSM networks. A public communications system also needs solid security
mechanisms to prevent misuse by third parties. Security functions such as
authentication, encryption and the use of Temporary Mobile Subscriber Identities
(TMSIs) are an absolute must.
Within a GSM network, different protocols are needed to enable the flow of data and
signaling between different GSM subsystems.

The next figure shows the interfaces that link the different GSM subsystems and the
protocols used to communicate on each interface.

Figure 18 - GSM Interfaces and Protocols

Note: numbers in parentheses indicate the relevant ETSI-GSM Recommendations.

The layered model of the GSM architecture integrates and links the peer-to-peer
communications between two different systems. The underlying layers satisfy the
services of the upper-layer protocols. Notifications are passed from layer to layer to
ensure that the information has been properly formatted, transmitted, and received.

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GSM protocols are basically divided into three layers:


 Layer 1: Physical layer
o Enables physical transmission (TDMA, FDMA, etc.);
o Assessment of channel quality;
o Except on the air interface (GSM Rec. 04.04), PCM 30 or ISDN links
are used (GSM Rec. 08.54 on Abis interface and 08.04 on A to F
interfaces).

 Layer 2: Data link layer


o Multiplexing of one or more layer 2 connections on control/signaling
channels;
o Error detection (based on HDLC);
o Flow control;
o Transmission quality assurance;
o Routing;

 Layer 3: Network layer


o Connection management (air interface);
o Management of location data;
o Subscriber identification;
o Management of added services (SMS, call forwarding, conference calls,
etc.).

For the connection of the different nodes in the GSM network, different interfaces are
defined in the GSM specifications. The different interfaces are classified into:
 The Um (MS-BTS) Interface - The interface between the MS and the BSS;

 The Abis (BSC-BTS) Interface - This interface is used between the BSC and
BTS to support the services offered to the GSM users and subscribers. The
interface also allows control of the radio equipment and radio frequency
allocation in the BTS;

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 The A (MSC-BSS) Interface - Interface between the MSC and its BSS. The
BSS-MSC interface is used to carry information concerning:
· BSS management;
· call handling;
· Mobility management.

 The E (MSC-MSC) Interface - When a mobile station moves from one MSC
area to another during a call, a handover procedure has to be performed in
order to continue the communication. For that purpose the MSCs have to
exchange data to initiate and then to realize the operation. After the handover
operation has been completed, the MSCs will exchange information to transfer
A-interface signaling as necessary. When a short message is to be transferred
between a Mobile Station and Short Message Service Centre (SC), in either
direction, this interface is used to transfer the message between the MSC
serving the Mobile Station and the MSC which acts as the interface to the SC;

 The H (HLR-AC) Interface - When an HLR receives a request for


authentication and ciphering data for a Mobile Subscriber and it does not hold
the requested data, the HLR requests the data from the AC;

 The C (MSC-HLR) Interface - The Gateway MSC must interrogate the HLR of
the required subscriber to obtain routing information for a call or a short
message directed to that subscriber;

 The D (HLR-VLR) Interface - This interface is used to exchange the data


related to the location of the mobile station and to the management of the
subscriber. The main service provided to the mobile subscriber is the
capability to set up or to receive calls within the whole service area;

 The F (MSC-EIR) Interface - This interface is used between MSC and EIR to
exchange data, in order that the EIR can verify the status of the IMEI retrieved
from the Mobile Station;

 The G (VLR-VLR) Interface -When a mobile subscriber moves from a VLR


area to another, Location Registration procedure will happen. This procedure
may include the retrieval of the IMSI and authentication parameters from the
old VLR;

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 The B (MSC-VLR) Interface - The VLR is the location and management data
base for the mobile subscribers roaming in the area controlled by the
associated MSC(s). Whenever the MSC needs data related to a given mobile
station currently located in its area, it interrogates the VLR. When a mobile
station initiates a location updating procedure with an MSC, the MSC informs
its VLR which stores the relevant information. This procedure occurs
whenever an MS roams to another location area. Also, when a subscriber
activates a specific supplementary service or modifies some data attached to
a service, the MSC informs (via the VLR) the HLR which stores these
modifications and updates the VLR if required.

Figure 19 - GSM Interfaces

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3 GSM Air Interface

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3.1 Analog and Digital Transmission

3.1.1 Analog Information


Analog information is continuous and does not stop at discrete values. An example of
analog information is time. It is continuous and does not stop at specific points. An
analog watch may have a second-hand, which does not jump from one second to the
next, but continues around the watch face without stopping.
An analog signal is a continuous waveform, which changes in accordance with the
properties of the information being represented.

3.1.2 Digital Information


Digital information is a set of discrete values. Time can also be represented digitally.
However, digital time would be represented by a watch, which jumps from one minute
to the next without stopping at the seconds. In effect, such a digital watch is taking a
sample of time at predefined intervals. For mobile systems, digital signals may be
considered to be sets of discrete waveforms.

Analog Signal Digital Signal

Figure 20 - Analog and digital signals

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3.1.3 Advantages of Digital techniques


During transmission through the entire communication chain signals become
distorted by noise, non-linearity in amplifiers, interference from other transmitters, etc.
Analogue signals may take any given waveform. Therefore distortions are
undetectable since any signal form is valid. Digital signals have two distinct states,
―1‖ and ―0‖. At any intermediate stage, a digital signal can be regenerated to its ideal
state. Error correction algorithms can be applied to detect transmission errors (bit
errors). Such, a digital signal can be carried ―clean‖ all the way from source to
destination and be converted to an audible (analogue) signal only at the receiving
user‘s ear.
As opposed to analogue, digital signals can be:
 ideally and error-free regenerated;
 packaged;
 compressed;
 stored;
 reproduced identically;
 easily de-/ and encrypted;

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3.2 Modulation Techniques


Regardless of the technology used, in radio link there is always a carrier frequency,
which is being modified by the information signal. There are several ways to
modulate the carrier.

• Where is the information?


• Amplitude modulation

• Frequency modulation

• Phase modulation

equidistant sampling points

Figure 21 - Modulation types

The modulation scheme used in GSM is Gaussian minimum-shift keying (GMSK)


with a normalized time bandwidth product BT of 0.3 and the modulation symbol rate
is 270.8 kb/s. In GMSK, a logical 1 cause the carrier phase to increase by 90º over a
bit period and a logical 0 cause the carrier phase to decrease by 90º. This phase
change is produced by instantaneously switching the carrier frequency between two
different values f1 and f2:

f1  f c  Rb / 4 (1)
f 2  f c  Rb / 4 (2)

Where Rb is the modulation rate (270.8 kb/s) and fc is the nominal carrier frequency.

In GSM 900, the frequency that is used to transfer the information over the air
interface is around 900 MHz.
GMSK enables the transmission of 270kbit/s within a 200kHz channel. This gives a
bit-rate of 1.3 bit/s per Hz. This is rather low bit-rate but acceptable as the channel
used has high interference level in the air.
The channel capacity in GSM does not compare favorably with other digital mobile
standards, which can fit more bits/s onto a channel. In this way the capacity of other
mobile standards is higher. However, GSM‘s GMSK offers more tolerance to
interference. This in turn enables tighter re-use of frequencies, which leads to an
overall gain in capacity, which out-performs that of other systems.

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3.3 Frequency allocation


GSM uses a combined TDMA/FDMA multiple-access scheme. The available
spectrum is partitioned into a number of bands, each 200 KHz wide. Each of these
bands may be occupied by a GMSK modulated RF carrier supporting a number of
TDMA time slots. The RF carriers are paired to allow a simultaneous data flow in
both directions; i.e. full-duplex. The GSM900 frequency bands are 890 MHz to 915
MHz for the uplink and 935 MHz to 960 MHz for the downlink.
Operators have multiple frequencies and thus GSM is in fact a combination of TDMA
and FDMA (frequency division multiple access) technologies. Each timeslot is called
a physical channel and can be used as a traffic channel and/or a control (signaling)
channel. Traffic and control channels are called logical channels.
There is a guard band of 200 KHz at the lower end of both uplink and downlink and
these frequency bands are not used. Each RF carrier frequency is assigned an
absolute radio frequency channel number (ARFCN). The upper and lower frequency
bands for a specific ARFCN is related by:

Fl (n)  890  0.2n (10)


Fu (n)  Fl (n)  45 (11)

Where the frequencies are both in MHz and 1  n  124 . In addition to frequency
separation between the duplex carriers that is 45 MHz for GSM900, the downlink and
uplink bursts of a duplex link are separated by 3 time-slots and downlink is 3 time-
slots in advance of uplink.

Figure 22 - GSM Bands Allocation

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For GSM Applications, bands allocated are as follows:

System

Specs P-GSM 900 E-GSM 900 GSM 1800 GSM 1900

1710-1785 1850-1910
Uplink 890-915 MHz 880-915 MHz
MHz MHz
Frequency
1805-1880 1930-1990
Downlink 935-960 MHz 925-960 MHz
MHz MHz

Wavelength ~ 33 cm ~ 33 cm ~ 17 cm ~ 16 cm

Duplex Distance 45 MHz 45 MHz 95 MHz 80 MHz

Carrier Separation 200 KHz 200 KHz 200 KHz 200 KHz

Radio Channels 124 174 374 299

Figure 23 - GSM Frequency Allocation

Another important factor is the channel capacity of a mobile system. A channel is a


frequency or set of frequencies which can be allocated for the transmission, and
possibly the receipt, of information. Communication channels of any form can be one
of the following types:

Type of Channel Properties Applications

Simplex One-way only FM radio, television

Half duplex Two-way, only one at a time Police radio

Full duplex Two-way, both at the same time Mobile systems

Figure 24 - Channel Types

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A simplex channel, such as an FM radio music station, uses a single frequency in a


single direction only. A duplex channel, such as that used during a mobile call, uses
two frequencies: one to the MS and one from the MS. The direction from the MS to
the network is referred to as uplink. The direction from the network to the MS is
referred to as downlink. Because it requires less power to transmit a lower frequency
over a given distance, uplink frequencies in mobile systems are always the lower
band of frequencies – this saves valuable battery power of the MSs. The Duplex
distance is the range of frequencies separating downlink and uplink bands. Duplex
distance should be large enough to decrease interference between uplink and
downlink channels.
Separation between carriers must be sufficient to eliminate interference between
adjacent channels. The more the separation the less the co-channel interference but
the less the available channels suited in the bandwidth. It is found that a 200 kHz
channel separation is suitable for all systems.

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3.4 Time Division Multiple Access TDMA


Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) is used in digital systems to transmit and
receive speech signals. With TDMA, one carrier is used to carry a number of calls,
each call using that carrier at designated periods in time.
These periods of time are referred to as time slots. Each MS is assigned to a specific
time slot on the uplink frequency and one on the downlink frequency. Information
sent during one time slot is called a burst.
In GSM, a TDMA frame consists of 8 time slots. This means that a GSM radio carrier
can carry 8 calls. The total bit rate on one channel is equal to 270 Kbit/s, and hence
the bit rate for every subscriber will be 270/8=33.75 Kbit/s. The time duration for
every time slot equals 0.577 ms.
The time slots are of very short duration, the user however, perceives a continuous
speech stream due to appropriate compression and expansion techniques at
transmitter and receiver.
Hence, the time duration for the whole TDMA frame equals 0.577 x 8 = 4.616 ms.

Figure 25 - Time Division Multiple Access principle

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3.5 GSM radio transmission process


Converting speech into the final bit stream that will be transmitted over the air
interface in GSM system goes through more than one stage. Stages are:

Figure 26 - Analog to Digital Signal Conversion

3.5.1 Sampling
Sampling involves measuring the analog signal at specific time intervals.
The accuracy of describing the analog signal in digital terms depends on how often
the analog signal is sampled. This is expressed as the sampling frequency. The
sampling theory states that:
To reproduce an analog signal without distortion, the signal must be sampled with at
least twice the frequency of the highest frequency component in the analog signal
Normal speech mainly contains frequency components lower than 3400 Hz. Higher
components have low energy and may be omitted without affecting the speech
quality much. Applying the sampling theory to analog speech signals, the sampling
frequency, should be at least 2 x 3.4 kHz = 6.8 kHz. Telecommunication systems use
a sampling frequency of 8 kHz, which is acceptable based on the sampling theory.

Figure 27 - Sampling

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3.5.2 Quantization
The next step is to give each sample a value. For this reason, the amplitude of the
signal at the time of sampling is measured and approximated to one of a finite set of
values. The figure below shows the principle of quantization applied to an analog
signal. The degree of accuracy depends on the number of quantization levels used.
Within common telephony, 256 levels are used while in GSM 8,192 levels are used.

Figure 28 - Quantization

3.5.3 Coding
Coding involves converting the quantized values into binary. Every value is
represented by a binary code of 13 bits (213 = 8192). For example, a quantized value
of 2157 would have a bit pattern of 0100001101101:

Bit 12 11 10 9 8 7 6 5 4 3 2 1 0 Total

Set to 0 1 0 0 0 0 1 1 0 1 1 0 1

Value 0 2048 0 0 0 0 64 32 0 8 4 0 1 2157

Figure 29 - Coding of 2157

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The result from the process of A/D conversion is 8,000 samples per second of 13 bits
each. This is a bit rate of 104 Kbits/s. When it is considered that 8 subscribers use
one radio channel, the overall bit rate would be 8 x 104 Kbits/s = 832 Kbits/s.
Recalling the general rule of 1 bit per Hertz, this bit rate would not fit into the 200 kHz
available for all 8 subscribers. The bit rate must be reduced somehow - this is
achieved using segmentation and speech coding.

3.6.4 Segmentation and Speech Coding


The key to reducing the bit rate is to send information about the speech instead of the
speech itself. In GSM, the speech coding process analyzes speech samples and
outputs parameters of what the speech consists of the tone, length of tone, pitch, etc.
This is then transmitted through the network to another MS, which generates the
speech based on these parameters.
The human speech process starts in the vocal chords or speech organs, where a
tone is generated. The mouth, tongue, teeth, etc. act as a filter, changing the nature
of this tone. The aim of speech coding in GSM is to send only information about the
original tone itself and about the filter.

3.1.3.1 Segmentation
Given that the speech organs are relatively slow in adapting to changes, the filter
parameters representing the speech organs are approximately constant during 20
ms. For this reason, when coding speech in GSM, a block of 20 ms is coded into one
set of bits. In effect, it is similar to sampling speech at a rate of 50 times per second
instead of the 8,000 used by A/D conversion.

Figure 30 - Speech segmentation

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3.1.3.2 Speech Coding


Instead of using 13 bits per sample as in A/D conversion, GSM speech coding uses
260 bits. This calculates as 50 x 260 = 13 Kbits/s. This provides a speech quality,
which is acceptable for mobile telephony and comparable with wire line PSTN
phones. Many types of speech coders are available. Some offer better speech
quality, at the expense of a higher bit rate (waveform coders).
Others use lower bit rates, at the expense of lower speech quality (vocoders). The
hybrid coder which GSM uses provides good speech quality with a relatively low bit
rate, at the expense of speech coder complexity.
The GSM speech coder produces a bit rate of 13 Kbits/s per subscriber. When it is
considered that 8 subscribers use one radio channel, the overall bit rate would be 8 x
13 Kbits/s = 104 Kbits/s. This compares favorably with the 832 Kbits/s from A/D
conversion. However, speech coding does not consider the problems, which may be
encountered on the radio transmission path. The next stages in the transmission
process, channel coding and interleaving, help to overcome these problems. The
function of converting from PCM coded information to GSM speech coder information
is called transcoding.

3.6.5 Channel Coding


Channel coding in GSM uses the 260 bits from speech coding as input to channel
coding and outputs 456 encoded bits. The 260 bits are split according to their relative
importance:

Block 1: 50 very important bits


Block 2: 132 important bits
Block 3: 78 not so important bits

The first block of 50 bits is sent through a block coder, which adds three parity bits
that will result in 53 bits. These three bits are used to detect errors in a received
message.
The 53 bits from first block, the 132 bits from the second block and 4 tail bits (total =
189) are sent to a 1:2 convolutional coder which outputs 378 bits. Bits added by the
convolutional coder enable the correction of errors when the message is received.
The bits of block 3 are not protected. The output from Channel coder is 456 bits
representing speech sample of 20 ms.

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Figure 31 - Channel Coding

3.6.6 Interleaving
In reality, bit errors often occur in sequence, as caused by long fading dips affecting
several consecutive bits. Channel coding is most effective in detecting and correcting
single errors and short error sequences. It is not suitable for handling longer
sequences of bit errors.
To overcome this, the data bursts are not sent in their natural order, but are
interleaved according to a pseudo-random pattern among a set of timeslots within the
multiframe. Interleaving could be compared to sending a group of important people
from A to B on different planes. By doing so, the likelihood of losing the entire group
is minimized.
For example, a message block may consist of four bits (1234). If four message
blocks must be transmitted, and one is lost in transmission, without interleaving there
will be a 25% BER overall, but a 100% BER for that lost message block. It is not
possible to recover from this.

De-interleaved blocks

Figure 32 - Interleaving

If interleaving is used, the bits of each block may be sent in a non-consecutive


manner. If one block is lost in transmission, again there is a 25% BER overall.
However, this time the 25% is spread over the entire set of message blocks, giving a

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25% BER for each. This is more manageable and there is a greater possibility that
the channel decoder can correct the errors.

3.1.3.3 First level of interleaving


The channel coder provides 456 bits for every 20 ms of speech. These are
interleaved, forming eight blocks of 57 bits each, as shown in the figure below.

Figure 33 - First level of interleaving

3.1.3.4 Second level of interleaving


If only one level of interleaving is used, a loss of this burst results in a total loss of
25%. This is too much for the channel decoder to correct. A second level of
interleaving can be introduced to further reduce the possible BER to 12.5%.
Instead of sending two blocks of 57 bits from the same 20 ms of speech within one
burst, a block from one 20 ms and a block from next sample of 20 ms are sent
together. A delay is introduced in the system when the MS must wait for the next 20
ms of speech.
However, the system can now afford to lose a whole burst, out of eight, as the loss is
only 12.5% of the total bits from each 20ms speech frame. 12,5% is the maximum
loss level that channel decoder can correct. Thus the block of 456 bits will now be
sending over 8 bursts each containing 57 bits only.

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Figure 34 - Second Level of Interleaving

3.6.7 Ciphering / Encryption


The purpose of ciphering is to encode the burst so that any other device than the
intended receiver cannot interpret it. The ciphering algorithm in GSM is called the A5
algorithm. It does not add bits to the burst, meaning that the input and output to the
ciphering process is the same as the input: 456 bits per 20 ms.

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3.6.8 Burst Formatting


Every transmission from an MS/BTS must include some extra information such as
the training sequence. The process of burst formatting is to add these bits (along with
some others such as tail bits) to the basic speech/data being sent. This increases the
overall bit-rate, but is necessary to reduce problems encountered on the radio path.
In GSM, the input to burst formatting is the 456 bits received from ciphering. Burst
formatting adds a total of 136 bits per block of 20 ms, bringing the overall total to 592.
However, each time slot on a TDMA frame is 0.577 ms long. This provides enough
time for 156.25 bits to be transmitted (each bit takes 3.7 ms), but a burst only
contains 148 bits. The rest of the space, 8.25 bit times, is empty and is called the
Guard Period (GP). This time is used to enable the MS/BTS ―ramp up‖ and ―ramp
down‖. To ramp up means to get power from the battery/power supply for
transmission. Ramping down is performed after each transmission to ensure that the
MS is not transmitting during time slots allocated to other MSs.
The output of burst formatting is a burst of 156.25 bits or 625 bits per 20 ms. When it
is considered that there are 8 subscriber per TDMA frame, the overall bit rate for
GSM can be calculated to be 270.9 kbits/s.

Figure 35 - GSM Burst

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3.6.9 Modulation and Transmission


The bits must then be sent over the air using a carrier frequency. As previously
explained, GSM uses the GMSK modulation technique. The bits are modulated onto
a carrier frequency and transmitted. The next figure shows the GSM transmission
process.

Figure 36 - Block diagram of Mobile Equipment

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3.6 GSM Radio transmission problems


A mobile communication environment suffers from many problems related to radio
transmission, which may cause unacceptable degradation of the service quality.
Hence solutions to these problems should be provided. Over the next sections, it will
be discussed the most important problems and their solutions.

3.6.1 Shadowing (Normal fading)


Fading means that the signal strength received fluctuates around a mean value while
changing the mobile position. The reason for shadowing is the presence of obstacles
like large buildings or hills in the path between the site and the mobile. The distance
between fading dips (minimum values of signal strength) is from 10 to 20 meters. If
the used modulation technique is analog, and if the mobile is moving with the speed
of a car, the shadowing will result in undesirable beats in the speech signal.

3.1.3.5 Solution to Normal Fading Problem


Normal Fading Problem could be reduced by Increasing the Fading Margin, the
receiver sensitivity is defined as the lowest received signal strength required to
regenerate the original signal properly. The fading margin is defined as the difference
between the mean value of the received signal and the receiver sensitivity. To
overcome the fading problems, the fading margin should be large enough that the
lowest fading dip is still higher than the receiver sensitivity.

Figure 37 - Fading dips

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3.6.2 Multi-path Fading


Multi-path fading occurs when there is more than one transmission path to the MS or
BTS, and therefore more than one signal is arriving at the receiver.

3.1.3.6 Rayleigh fading


This occurs when a signal takes more than one path between the MS and BTS
antennas. In this case, the signal is not received on a line of sight path directly from
the TX antenna. Rather, it is reflected off buildings, for example, and is received from
several different indirect paths.
Rayleigh fading occurs when the obstacles are close to the receiving antenna. The
received signal is the sum of many identical signals that differ only in phase (and to
some extent amplitude). A fading dip and the time that elapses between two fading
dips depend on both the speed of the MS and the transmitting frequency. As an
approximation, the distance between two dips caused by Rayleigh fading is about
half a wavelength. Thus, for GSM 900 the distance between dips is about 17 cm.

Figure 38 - Multi-path fading

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3.1.3.7 Solutions to Rayleigh Fading Problem


The first solution to reduce the Rayleigh Fading is using Antenna Space Diversity,
the cell transceiver will use two receiving antennas instead of one. A distance of
about 5 meters will separate them, and they will receive radio signals independently,
so they will be affected differently by the fading dips and the better signal received
will be selected.

Received Signal Strength

Distance

Figure 39 - Antenna diversity

Another solution to reduce the Rayleigh Fading is using Frequency Hopping. During
conversation, a mobile subscriber is allocated one TDMA time slot on one of the RF
carriers assigned to its serving cell. The fading effect may not be the same for all of
the frequencies, so the time slot of the subscriber will jump or ―hop‖ between the
frequencies of the cell when it is repeated in each TDMA frame. If only one of the
frequencies is affected severely by fading, a small fraction of the signal will be lost.
The hopping sequence might be cyclic or random.

Time

Figure 40 - Frequency Hopping

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3.6.3 Time Dispersion


Time dispersion is another problem relating to multiple paths to the Rx antenna of
either an MS or BTS. However, in contrast to Rayleigh fading, the reflected signal
comes from an object far away from the Rx antenna. Time dispersion causes Inter-
Symbol Interference (ISI) where consecutive symbols (bits) interfere with each other
making it difficult for the receiver to determine which symbol is the correct one. An
example of this is shown in the figure below where the sequence 1, 0 is sent from the
BTS. If the reflected signal arrives one bit time after the direct signal, then the
receiver detects a 1 from the reflected wave at the same time it detects a 0 from the
direct wave. The symbol 1 interferes with the symbol 0 and the MS does not know
which one is correct.
One bit is transmitted every 3.7 ms. Radio waves travel at 3x10 8 m/s. Therefore,
one bit travels approximately 1 km within one bit period. Thus, if the direct path is
1km and the indirect path is 3 km long, the first bit transmitted will interfere with the
3rd bit transmitted.

Figure 41 - Time Dispersion

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3.1.3.8 Solutions to Time Dispersion Problem


The first solution is to Increase Carrier to Reflection Ratio (C/R). The C/R ratio is
defined as the difference in signal strength between the signal received from the RBS
and the strongest reflected signal. Its value depends on the relative position of the
mobile subscriber. The C/R ratio increases as the mobile approaches the RBS and
vice versa. At the planning phase of a site, it should be taken care of the reflecting
objects that are possibly found inside the coverage area of the site. This is to locate
the site in a suitable position so that the C/R ratio is kept large enough, in order for
the ―ISI‖ to be negligible.

The second solution is to implement a Viterbi Equalizer which is an equalizer used to


equalize the effect of at most four bits delay, which corresponds to a path difference
of about 4,5 Km. A bit pattern called the ―Training Sequence‖ that is known to the
mobile is transmitted with every burst. The pattern is inserted in the middle of the
burst to make sure that the channel has steady characteristics. The equalizer
compares the received pattern with the expected one and creates a mathematical
model of the channel that probably caused the difference between the two patterns.
Then a probable transmitted bit sequence is fed to the channel model and the output
is compared with the received bits until reaching the most probable bit sequence.

3.6.4 Time Delay


Each MS on a call is allocated a time slot on a TDMA frame. This is an amount of
time during which the MS transmits information to the BTS. The information must
also arrive at the BTS within that time slot. The time alignment problem occurs when
part of the information transmitted by an MS does not arrive within the allocated time
slot. Instead, that part may arrive during the next time slot, and may interfere with
information from another MS using that other time slot. A large distance between the
MS and the BTS causes time alignment. Effectively, the signal cannot travel over the
large distance within the given time.

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3.1.3.9 Solution to time delay problem


Timing advance is a solution specifically designed to counteract the problem of time
alignment. It works by instructing the misaligned MS to transmit its burst earlier or
later than it normally would. In GSM, the timing advance information relates to bit
times.

Thus, an MS may be instructed to do its transmission by a certain number of bit times


earlier or later related to previous position, to reach its timeslot at the BTS in right
time. Maximum 63 bit times can be used in GSM systems. This limits GSM normal
cell size to 35km radius. However with extended range equipment, distances up to
70Km or even 121Km can be handled, using 2 timeslots.

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3.7 Frequency hopping


Mobile radio carriers suffer from frequency-selective interferences, for example,
fading due to the multipath propagation phenomena. As the carrier signal attenuates
with distance, frequency-selective interference can have an increasingly significant
affect on the signal quality. Frequency hopping (FH) employs a constantly changing
transmission frequency on the radio carrier. Therefore the effects of frequency
selective interference will be reduced by producing an averaging effect over the
interference caused on each frequency employed within the FH sequence. This
results in an overall improvement in S/N ratio.
The mobile station has to be frequency-agile, meaning it can move between different
frequencies in order to transmit and receive data, etc.
GSM employs slow frequency hopping (SFH) to mitigate the effects of multipath
fading and interference. Each burst belonging to a particular physical channel will be
transmitted on a different carrier frequency in each TDMA frame. Thus the hopping
rate is equal to the frame rate (216.7 frames/s). The only physical channels that are
not allowed to hop are FCH, SCH, BCCH, PCH and AGCH.
A normal handset is able to switch frequencies 217 times per second.GSM makes
use of this frequency agility to implement slow frequency hopping, where the mobile
and the BTS transmit each TDMA frame on a different carrier frequency.

Frequency Hopping could be implemented in two different ways: Baseband Hopping


and Synthesiser Hopping.
 Baseband Hopping - Base band hopping implies switching the transmit
frequency at the baseband frequency level. This can be implemented where
the Base Station is equipped with a number of discreet transceivers, each
operating at a fixed frequency. The data stream is switched to each
transceiver in accordance with the assigned hopping sequence.

 Synthesiser Hopping - A single synthesises transceiver is used and the


transmit frequency is switched using a tuning controller set to the assigned
hopping sequence.

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Figure 42 - Frequency Hopping Types

The hopping sequence defines the order in which the different carrier frequencies are
used on the uplink and downlink. Since the uplink and downlink frequencies always
remain separated by the duplex channel spacing 45 MHz for GSM900, only a single
hopping sequence is required to describe the complete duplex link.
The mobile allocation parameter prescribes the carrier frequencies that may be used
by each MS in its hopping sequence. Each BTS transmits details of all the carriers it
is using in the form of a channel description message, carried on the BCCH. The MS
decodes and stores this information while it is in idle mode. Having established the
list of carrier frequencies assigned to the frequency hopping channel, the MS must
also determine the sequence in which each frequency is to be used. The hopping
sequence is described by 2 parameters: the hopping sequence number (HSN) and
the mobile allocation index offset (MAIO). The HSN selects one of 64 predefined
random hopping sequences, while the MAIO selects the start point within the
sequence. The MAIO may take as many values as there are frequencies in the
mobile allocation. The value HSN=0 chooses a cyclic sequence where the
frequencies in the mobile allocation are used one after another.
Frequency hopping channels with the same HSN but different MAIOs will never use
the same frequency simultaneously because they are orthogonal. Consequently, all
frequency hopping channels within a cell employ the same HSN but have different
MAIOs. Where 2 frequency hopping channels use different HSNs, they will interfere
for 1/n of the bursts and consequently frequency hopping channels in co-channel
cells will use different HSNs.

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3.8 Discontinuous transmission (DTX)


To reduce the MS's power consumption and minimize interference on the air
interface, user signal transmission is interrupted during pauses in speech. ―Comfort
noise‖ is artificially generated by the MS to avoid disruption due to an abrupt
interruption in speech.

3.9 GSM Power Classes


The specifications define five classes of MS for GSM900 based on their output power
capabilities as given in the next table:

Figure 43 - MS power classes in GSM

Each MS has the ability to reduce its output power from its maximum power in steps
of 2 dB in response to commands from BTS. This facility is used to implement uplink
power control whereby an MS‘s transmitted power is adjusted to ensure that it is
sufficient to provide a satisfactory up-link quality. This process is used to conserve
MS battery power and also reduce uplink interference. Furthermore, the BTS output
power may also be adjusted to allow power control on the downlink.

3.10 Power Control


GSM system employs power control to ensure that the MS and BTS only transmit
sufficient power to maintain an acceptable link, thereby reducing interference to
neighboring cells and improving the spectral efficiency.

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To minimize co-channel interference and to conserve power, both the mobiles and
the base transceiver stations operate at the lowest power level that will maintain an
acceptable signal quality.
The MS has the ability to decrease its transmitted power is steps of 2 dB. The
transmission power of the MS is controlled by the network conveying messages over
the SACCH. The mobile station and BTS continually measure the signal strength or
signal quality (based on the bit error ratio), and pass the information to the base
station controller, which ultimately decides if and when the power level should be
changed.

Figure 44 - Mobile Power Control

After receiving a power control command, an MS adjusts its transmitted power to the
requested power level at a maximum rate of 2 dB every 60 ms. Thus a transmitter
power change of 30 dB will take around 900 ms.
The power control algorithm is based on the uplink signal measurements taken at the
BTS. The BTS must be able to dynamically adjust its power in at least 15 steps of 2
dB. Power control may be applied independently on downlink and uplink, or it may
not be applied either. However, downlink power control may not be applied to any
slots on the BCCH carrier as it must be transmitted at a constant power because it is
measured by the MSs in surrounding cells for handover preparation.

Figure 45 - Power Control

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4 GSM Coverage and Cell Planning

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4.1 GSM Coverage Plan


To provide coverage for a large service area of a mobile network, it is possible to use
one transceiver with high radio power installed in the center of the service area. This
method will be simple and cost saving, but on the other side it will have a number of
disadvantages. For example, the mobile equipments used in this network should
have high output power in order to be able to transmit signals across the coverage
area. Also the usage of radio resources (allowed RF frequency band) will be limited,
this is because a limited number of subscribers can share the allocated spectrum. In
other words, a limited number of simultaneous calls can be handled by the system.
Another solution is to divide this service area into smaller areas called ―cells‖. Each
cell as well as the mobile handsets will have relatively small power transceivers. The
frequency spectrum might be ―reused‖ in two far separated cells, which means
unlimited capacity of the system and in the same time good interference
characteristics.

4.2 Cell Geometry


The simplest shape of a cell is to be circular with its transceiver at the center. But it is
obvious from the following figure that there will be dead spots between the adjacent
cells, which will have no any coverage. To solve this problem, the cells might be
square, triangular, or hexagonal shaped.

Figure 46 - Circular Cells and dead spots

Differentiation between these three shapes will be in order to optimize the number of
cells required to cover a given service area against the cell transceiver power, where
both parameters are functions of the variable ―R‖. By some calculations, you will find
that using hexagonal shaped cells achieves the optimum.

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R R R

Figure 47 - Hexagonal Shaped cells Vs square and triangle ones

Practically speaking, the radiation of the transceiver antenna cannot take a


hexagonal shape. The circular shape is the nearest one, so the cells will take the
form of overlapping circles in order to overcome the problem of dead spots. Usually a
coverage area contains obstacles, like large buildings, which deform the radiation of
a cell. Hence the actual shape of a cell will be random.

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4.3 Antennas
There are two types of antennas that are commonly used:
 Omni-directional antenna: transmits equally in all directions (360 degrees).
 Directional or sectorial antenna: with the main lobe of radiation directed to
specific area. When using these antennas, there will be three 120º sectorial
antennae for each site, each sector is then called a ―cell‖. Hence a site
consists of three cells at most.
A cell may be defined as geographical area of radio coverage from one BTS antenna
system. It is the smallest building block in a mobile network and is the reason why
mobile networks are often referred to as cellular networks. Typically, cells are
represented graphically by hexagons.

Figure 48 - Omni-Directional Cells & Sectorial Cells

The border between the coverage areas of two cells is the set of points at which the
signal strength from both antennas is the same. In reality, the environment will
determine this line, but for simplicity, it is represented as a straight line.
In reality, hexagons are extremely simplified models of radio coverage patterns
because radio propagation is highly dependent on terrain and other factors (path
loss, shadowing, multi-path fading, time dispersion, carrier-to-reflection ratio and time
alignment).

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4.4 Frequency Re–use


Modern cellular networks are planned using the technique of frequency re-use.
Within a cellular network, the number of calls that the network can support is limited
by the amount of radio frequencies allocated to that network.
If the GSM900 system has 124 Absolute Radio Frequency Traffic Channels, and if
we are using only in our network 60 of them, then we can only serve 8 x 60 = 480
Calls if we only use the frequency once. However, a cellular network overcome this
constraint and maximizes the number of subscribers that it can service by using
frequency re-use.
Frequency re-use means that two radio channels within the same network can use
exactly the same pair of frequencies, provided that there is a sufficient geographical
distance (the frequency re-use distance) between them so they will not interfere with
each other.

Figure 49 - Frequency Re-use

The tighter frequency re-use plan, the greater the capacity potential of the network.
Based on the traffic calculations, the cell pattern and frequency re-use plan are
worked out not only for the initial network, but so that future demands can be met.
Groups of frequencies can be placed together into patterns of cells called clusters. A
cluster is a group of cells in which all available frequencies have been used once and
only once. Since the same frequencies can be used in neighboring clusters,
interference may become a problem. Therefore, the frequency re-use distance must
be kept as large as possible. However, to maximize capacity the frequency re-use
distance should be kept as low as possible. The re-use patterns recommended for
GSM are the 4/12 and the 3/9 pattern. 4/12 means that there are four three-sector
sites supporting twelve cells using twelve frequency groups.

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4/12 cluster in which the 3/9 cluster in which the


available frequencies are available frequencies are
divided into 12 groups and divided into 9 groups and
distributed between 4 sites distributed between 3 sites.

Figure 50 - 4/12 & 3/9 Clusters

Below is an example of how a network operator could divide 24 available frequencies


(1-24) into a 3/9 cell pattern:

Frequency group A1 B1 C1 A2 B2 C2 A3 B3 C3

64 65 66 67 68 69 70 71 72

Channels 73 74 75 76 77 78 79 80 81

82 83 84 85 86 87

Figure 51 - Frequency Groups in 3/9 pattern

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In the 3/9 cell pattern there are always 9 channels separating each frequency in a
cell. However, when compared with the 4/12 pattern, cells A1 and C3 are neighbors
and use adjacent frequencies (10 and 9 respectively). Therefore, the C/A interference
will increase. In this case, an operator may use frequency hopping which, if planned
correctly, could reduce the possibility of such adjacent channel interference. In a real
network the allocation of channels to cells will not be as uniform as in table 10-2
above, as some cells will require more channels and some will require less. In this
case, a channel may be taken from a cell with low traffic load and moved to one with
a higher traffic load. However, in doing so, it is important to ensure that interference
is still minimized.

4.5 Interference problems due to frequency


reuse
Interference is a major limiting factor in the performance of cellular radio systems.
Sources can be:
 Another mobile in the same cell;
 Another call in a neighboring cell;
 Other base stations in the same frequency band;
 Any non-cellular system which advertently leaks energy into the cellular
frequency band.

Interference plays a major role in block the increasing capacity and is directly
proportional to drop ongoing calls.
In the next sub sections we study in more detail the two major types of interference,
which are co-channel and adjacent channel interference.

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4.5.1 Co-Channel Interference


Cells located on different locations in a given area use same frequencies known as
frequency reuse implies. The problem of using same frequencies is interference
between these cells called as co-channel interference.
Co-channel interference is caused by the use of a frequency close to the exact same
frequency. The former will interfere with the latter, leading to the terms interfering
frequency (Ic) and carrier frequency (C). The GSM specification recommends that the
carrier-to-interference (C/Ic) ratio is greater than 9 decibels (dB).
This C/I ratio is influenced by the following factors:
 The location of the MS;
 Local geography and type of local scatters;
 BTS antenna type, site elevation and position.

Figure 52 - Co-Channel Interference

It is not possible to overcome co-channel interference just increasing transmitter


carrier power. This is because an increase in carrier transmits power increases the
interference of neighboring co-channels.
In order to decrease co-channel interference, all cells must be located at a distance
to provide limited isolation due to broadcast.

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4.5.2 Adjacent Channel Interference


Interference resulting from signals which are adjacent in frequency to the desired
signal is called adjacent channel interference, which means that adjacent frequencies
(Ia), which are frequencies shifted 200kHz from the carrier frequency (C), must be
avoided in the same cell and preferably in neighboring cells also. Although adjacent
frequencies are at different frequencies to the carrier frequency they can still cause
interference and quality problems. The GSM specification states that the carrier-to-
adjacent ratio (C/Ia) must be larger than -9dB.

Figure 53 - Adjacent Channel Interference

By planning frequency re-use in accordance with well-established cell patterns,


neither co-channel interference nor adjacent channel interference will cause
problems. However, in reality cells vary in size depending on the amount of traffic
they are expected to carry. Therefore, real cell plans must be verified by means of
predictions or radio measurements to ensure that interference does not become a
problem.

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4.6 Cell Classifications

A cell can be classified as:

Cell Type Description


A cell that can give coverage to areas that do not have radio coverage.
Umbrella Cell Usually the antenna is as high as possible that the cell can fill in the gaps left by the
other cells.

Normal cell A cell with no other attributes.

A cell, which has a very small radius, giving localized coverage,


Micro/Pico Cell so it is suitable to be used in a shopping mall or in a subway system.

Overlaid Cell A cell that gives radio coverage to the whole cell.

A cell that gives coverage only to a part of the whole cell,


Underlaid Cell which means that it transmits with reduced power.
This is to serve a higher density area within the same cell.
Table 1 - Types of Cells Description

Umbrella Cell

Overlaid &
Normal Cell Normal Cell
Under laid Cells

Figure 54 - Types of Cells

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The overlaid/underlaid sub-cells feature provides a way to increase the traffic


capacity in a cellular network without building new sites. A set of channels in a BTS is
assigned to transmit at a certain power level. These are the underlaid sub-cell
channels. Another set of channels in the same BTS are assigned to transmit at a
lower power level. These are the overlaid sub-cell channels. The feature makes it
possible to use two different frequency re-use patterns: one pattern for overlaid sub-
cells and another pattern for underlaid sub-cells.

Each overlaid sub-cell serves a smaller area than the corresponding underlaid sub-
cell and the frequency re-use distance for the overlaid sub-cells can therefore be
made shorter. Consequently, the number of frequencies per cell can be increased
providing an increased traffic capacity in the cellular network.

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CELL TYPE
Item
Macro Cell Micro Cell
Cell Radius 1 to 20 km less than 1 km

Transmitter Power 1 to 10 W less than 1 W


Channel fading Rayleigh Ricean

RMS delay spread 0.1 to 10 µsec 10 to 100 ns

Bit Rate 0.3 Mbps 1 Mbps

F
igure 55 - Macro Cell vs Micro Cell

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4.7 Introduction to Cell Planning


The major activities involved in the cell planning process are shown below.

Figure 56 - Cell Planning Cycle

Step 1: Traffic and Coverage Analysis


Cell planning begins with traffic and coverage analysis. The analysis should produce
information about the geographical area and the expected capacity (traffic load). The
types of data collected are Cost, Capacity, Coverage, Grade Of Service (GOS),
Available frequencies, Speech quality, and System growth capability
The basis for all cell planning is the traffic demand, i.e. how many subscribers use
the network and how much traffic they generate.
The Erlang (E) is a unit of measurement of traffic intensity. It can be calculated with
the following formula:
A = n x T / 3600 Erlang
Where,
A = offered traffic from one or more users in the system
n = number of calls per hour
T = average call time in seconds
The geographical distribution of traffic demand can be calculated by the use of
demographic data such as Population distribution, Car usage distribution, Income
level distribution, Land usage data, Telephone usage statistics and other factors, like
subscription/call charge and price of MSs.

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GOS GOS
0.007 0.008 0.009 0.01 0.02 0.03 0.05 .1 .2 .4
N N

1 .00705 .00806 .00908 .01010 .02041 .03093 .05263 .11111 .25000 .66667 1
2 .12600 .13532 .14416 .15259 .22347 .28155 .38132 .59543 1.0000 2.0000 2
3 .39664 .41757 .43711 .45549 .60221 .71513 .89940 1.2708 1.9299 3.4798 3
4 .77729 .81029 .84085 .86942 1.0923 1.2589 1.5246 2.0454 2.9452 5.0210 4
5 1.2362 1.2810 1.3223 1.3608 1.6571 1.8752 2.2185 2.8811 4.0104 6.5955 5
6 1.7531 1.8093 1.8610 1.9090 2.2759 2.5431 2.9603 3.7584 5.1086 8.1907 6
7 2.3149 2.3820 2.4437 2.5009 2.9354 3.2497 3.7378 4.6662 6.2302 9.7998 7
8 2.9125 2.9902 3.0615 3.1276 3.6271 3.9865 4.5430 5.5971 7.3692 11.419 8
9 3.5395 3.6274 3.7080 3.7825 4.3447 4.7479 5.3702 6.5464 8.5217 13.045 9
10 4.1911 4.2889 4.3784 4.4612 5.0840 5.5294 6.2157 7.5106 9.6850 14.677 10
11 4.8637 4.9709 5.0691 5.1599 5.8415 6.3280 7.0764 8.4871 10.857 16.314 11
12 5.5543 5.6708 5.7774 5.8760 6.6147 7.1410 7.9501 9.4740 12.036 17.954 12
13 6.2607 6.3863 6.5011 6.6072 7.4015 7.9667 8.8349 10.470 13.222 19.598 13
14 6.9811 7.1154 7.2382 7.3517 8.2003 8.8035 9.7295 11.473 14.413 21.243 14
15 7.7139 7.8568 7.9874 8.1080 9.0096 9.6500 10.633 12.484 15.608 22.891 15
16 8.4579 8.6092 8.7474 8.8750 9.8284 10.505 11.544 13.500 16.807 24.541 16
17 9.2119 9.3714 9.6171 9.6516 10.656 11.368 12.461 14.522 18.010 26.192 17
18 9.9751 10.143 10.296 10.437 11.491 12.238 13.385 15.548 19.216 27.844 18
19 10.747 10.922 11.082 11.230 12.333 13.115 14.315 16.579 20.424 29.498 19
20 11.526 11.709 11.876 12.031 13.182 13.997 15.249 17.613 21.635 31.152 20

F
igure 57 - Erlang B table

To determine the number and layout of BTS‘s the number of subscribers and the
Grade Of Service (GOS) has to be known. The GOS is the percentage of allowed
congested calls and defines the quality of the service.
With all these inputs, it‘s possible to calculate/have a general idea of how many sites
it will be needed in a certain area.
It is recommended when planning GSM network to design traffic to lie between 25mE
and 33mE.

Step 2: Nominal Cell Plan


A nominal cell plan can be produced from the data compiled from traffic and
coverage analysis. The nominal cell plan is a graphical representation of the network
and looks like a cell pattern on a map. Nominal cell plans are the first cell plans and
form the basis for further planning. Successive planning must take into account the
radio propagation properties of the actual environment. Such planning needs
measurement techniques and computer-aided analysis tools for radio propagation
studies.

Step 3: Surveys
Once a nominal cell plan has been completed and basic coverage and interference
predictions are available, site surveys and radio measurements can be performed.

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Step 4: System Design


Once the planning parameters have been adjusted to match the actual
measurements, dimensioning of the BSC, TRC and MSC/VLR can be adjusted and
the final cell plan produced. As the name implies, this plan can then be used for
system installation. New coverage and interference predictions are run at this stage,
resulting in Cell Design Data (CDD) documents containing cell parameters for each
cell.

Step 5&6: System Implementation and Tuning


Once the system has been installed, it is continuously monitored to determine how
well it meets demand. This is called system tuning. It involves:
 Checking that the final cell plan was implemented successfully;
Evaluating customer complains;
 Checking that the network performance is acceptable;
 Changing parameters and taking other measurements, if necessary.

Step 7: System Growth and Change


Cell planning is an ongoing process. If the network needs to be expanded because of
an increase in traffic or because of a change in the environment (e.g. a new building),
then the operator must perform the cell planning process again, starting with a new
traffic and coverage analysis.

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5 GSM Channels

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5.1 Physical Channels and Logical Channels


When an MS and a BTS communicate, they do it on a specific pair of radio frequency
(RF) carriers, one for uplink and the other for the downlink transmissions, and within
a given time slot in each consecutive TDMA frame. The combination of time slot and
carrier frequency forms what is termed a physical channel. One RF channel support
eight physical channels in time slots 0 through 7. The data, whether user traffic or
signaling information, are mapped onto the physical channels by defining a number
of logical channels. Logical channel carry information of a specific type and a number
of these channels may be combined before being mapped onto the same physical
channel. The organization of logical channels depends on the application and the
direction of information flow (uplink/downlink or bidirectional). A logical channel can
be either a traffic channel (TCH), which carries user data, or a signaling channel.

Figure 58 - Physical and Logical Channels

Many types of logical channels exists, each designed to carry a different message to
or from an MS. All information to and from an MS must be formatted correctly, so that
the receiving device can understand the meaning of different bits in the message.

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Logical
channels

Traffic
Control channels
channels

DCCH
CCCH HALF RATE

BCH
FULL
RATE
PCH
AGCH
RACH
FCCH SDCCH
SCH SACCH
BCCH FACCH

Figure 59 - Logical Channels

5.2 Traffic Channels


A traffic channel (TCH) is used to carry speech and data traffic. Traffic channels are
defined using a 26-frame multiframe, or group of 26 TDMA frames. The length of a
26-frame multiframe is 120 ms, which is how the length of a burst period is defined
(120 ms divided by 26 frames divided by 8 burst periods per frame). Out of the 26
frames, 24 are used for traffic, 1 is used for the slow associated control channel
(SACCH) and 1 is currently unused.
TCHs for the uplink and downlink are separated in time by 3 burst periods, so that the
mobile station does not have to transmit and receive simultaneously, thereby
simplifying the electronic circuit. This method permits complex antenna duplex filters
to be avoided and thus helps to cut power consumption.
In addition to these full-rate TCHs (TCH/F, 22.8 kbit/s), half-rate TCHs (TCH/H, 11.4
kbit/s) are also defined. Half-rate TCHs double the capacity of a system effectively by
making it possible to transmit two calls in a single channel. If a TCH/F is used for
data communications, the usable data rate drops to 9.6 kbit/s (in TCH/H: max. 4.8
kbit/s) due to the enhanced security algorithms. Eighth-rate TCHs are also specified,
and are used for signaling. In the GSM Recommendations, they are called stand-
alone dedicated control channels (SDCCH).

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TDMA-frame

T T T T T T T T T T T TA T T T T T T T T T T T T I

26 frames = 120 ms
Multiframe for full-rate channel

0: T T T T T T A T T T T T T
1: T T T T T T T T T T T T A
Multiframe for half-rate channels (0.1)

Figure 60 - Full Rate & Half Rate

9601190
5.3 Control Channels
Control channels carry signaling information between an MS and a BTS. There are
several forms of control channels in GSM and they can be divided into three types:
 Broadcast CHannels (BCH);
 Common Control CHannels (CCCH);
 Dedicated Control CHannels (DCCH‘s).

Figure 61 - The GSM Channels

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5.3.1 Broadcast CHannels


When an MS is switched on, it searches for a BTS to connect to. Broadcast channels
are transmitted in the downlink direction only by BTSs.
The Frequency Correction Channel (FCCH) is the simplest GSM logical channel
because all its information bits are set to 0. The FCCH is used by the MS in the initial
stages of BTS acquisition to correct its internal frequency sources and recover the
carrier phase of BTS transmissions.
The Synchronization Channel (SCH) contains full details of its own position within
the GSM framing structure. Using the information supplied on the SCH, an MS fully
synchronize its frame counters with those of a BTS. The SCH information is
transmitted using the synchronization bursts.
The Broadcast Control Channel (BCCH) is used to broadcast control information to
every MS within a cell. This information includes details of the control channel
configuration used at the BTS, a list of the BCCH carrier frequencies used at the
neighboring BTSs and a number of parameters that are used by the MS when
accessing the BTS. Other information sent over these channels include country code,
network code, local area code, PLMN code, RF channels used within the cell,
surrounding cells, frequency hopping sequence number, mobile RF channel number
for allocation, cell selection parameters, and RACH description. It is always
transmitted on a designated RF carrier and time slot 0 at a constant power. BCCH,
FCH and SCH cannot be hopped.
The Cell Broadcast Channel (CBCH) is used to transmit short alphanumeric text
messages to all the MSs within a particular cell. For example traffic information.
These messages appear on the MS‘s display and a subscriber may choose to
receive different messages by selecting different pages. The BCCH and the CBCH
both use the normal burst.

5.3.2 Common Control Channels


The common control channels may be used by any MS within a cell. The Paging
Channel (PCH) is a downlink-only channel that is used by the system to page
individual MSs.
The Access Grant channel (AGCH) shares the same physical resources as PCH, a
particular time slot may be used by each channel. An AGCH is used by network to
grant or deny an MS access to the network by supplying it with details of a dedicated
channel; i.e. TCH or SDCCH to be used for subsequent communications. The AGCH
is a downlink only channel and uses always normal burst.
The Random Access Channel (RACH) is an uplink-only channel that is used by an
MS to initially access the network; i.e. at call-setup or prior to a location update. The
random term stems from the fact that more than one MS may transmit in an RACH
time slot and thus collide.

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5.3.3 Dedicated Control Channels


The Dedicated Control channels are used for call purposes or for handover purposes.
When an MS is engaged in a call, a certain amount of signaling information must flow
across the radio interface in order to maintain the call. This type of signaling is
supported using logical control channels which occupy the same physical channel as
the traffic data. Non-urgent information such as measurement data is transmitted
using the Slow Associated Control Channel (SACCH). This occupies one time slot
in every 26. More urgent information such as handover is sent using time slots that
are stolen from the traffic channel. This channel is known as the Fast Associated
Control Channel (FACCH) because of its ability to transfer information between the
BTS and MS more quickly than SACCH.

In some situations, signaling information must also flow when a call is not in
progress. This could be accommodated by allocating either a full or half rate TCH
and by using either the SACCH or FACCH to carry the information. However, this
would be a waste of radio resources. Instead, a lower data rate channel has been
defined which has around 1/8 of the capacity of a full-rate TCH known as Stand-
alone Dedicated Control Channel (SDCCH). It exists independently of a TCH and it
is dedicated to a single MS. It also has an associated SACCH. Since SDCCH always
carries signaling traffic there is no frame stealing and consequently it does not need
an FACCH. SDCCH always uses the normal burst and operates both in the downlink
and uplink.

5.4 TDMA Burst Structure


Each GSM RF carrier supports 8 time slots per frame and the data are transmitted in
the form of bursts that are designed to fit within these slots. Each TDMA frame is
4.615 ms in length and each TDMA slot is 577 microseconds in length. The burst
structure differs according to the type of information transmitted on the TDMA time
slot. The GSM specifications define 5 different types of bursts as shown in the next
Figure:
In Normal Burst, the training sequence is used to sound the radio channel and
produce an estimate of the impulse response at the receiver for equalization. The tail
bits in normal burst are also always set to 0 to ensure that the Viterbi decoder begins
and ends in a known state. Furthermore, the last bit of the first 58 information bits
and the first bit of the last 58 information bits are the stealing bits.
The Frequency Correction Burst is used by the MS to detect a special carrier which
is transmitted by every BTS in GSM network. This carrier is called the broadcast
control channel (BCCH) carrier and MSs search for BCCH carriers to detect the
presence of a GSM network. Every bit in the Frequency Burst is set to zero and after
GMSK modulation, this results in a pure sine wave at a frequency around 68 KHz
higher than the RF carrier center frequency.

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The Synchronization Burst consists of a long synchronization sequence along with


the important information being encrypted and divided into two blocks. This
synchronization sequence is to make it easier for the mobile to recognize this
channel. The tail bits and the guard period are the same as that of a normal burst.
The Access Burst is used by the RACH channel. The mobile sends this burst when
it does not know the distance to its serving BTS, which is the case when the mobile is
switched on or after it makes a handover to a new cell. So this burst must be shorter
in order to prevent it from overlapping with the burst on the next time slot. The burst
length is equal to 77 bits, with 8 bits as tail bits at the beginning, 3 bits as tail bits at
the end, and a guard period of 68.25 bits length.
The last Burst Type is the Dummy Burst. It is similar to Normal Burst in that it has
the same structure and uses the same training sequences. The main difference
between the Dummy Burst and Normal Burst is that the information bits on either side
of the training sequence are set to a predefined sequence in Dummy Burst. The
Dummy Burst is used to fill inactive time slots on the BCCH carrier which must be
transmitted continuously at a constant power.

Figure 62 - The GSM Bursts

Figure 63 - Logical Channels and Bursts

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5.5 Mapping of Logical Channels onto


Physical Time Slots
The radio resources are considered as the most expensive part of a mobile network,
so the usage of radio channels should be optimized. As can be seen from the
previous description of logical channels, every cell must have many control channels.
It will not be suitable to dedicate one physical time slot to each logical channel.
Instead of that, more than one logical channel will be made to occupy the same
physical time slot alternatively, for example a BCCH is sent on time slot 0 in one
TDMA frame and a PCH will be sent on the same time slot in the next frame. This
concept is called ―Mapping of logical channels‖.
The various logical channels may be combined in one of 7 ways before being
mapped onto a physical channel as can be seen in the next table:

Possible
Time Slots Downlink Uplink

0-7 1 TCH/F(+SACCH) 1 TCH/F(+SACCH)


0-7 2TCH/H(+SACCH)
0-7 8SDCCH(+SACCH) 8SDCCH(+SACCH)
0 1SCH+1FCCH+1BCCH 1RACH
+1AGCH+1PCH
0 1SCH+1FCCH+1BCCH 1RACH+4SDDCH
+1AGCH*+1PCH* (+SACCH)
+4SDCCH(+SACCH)
2,4,6 1 BCCH+1AGCH+1PCH 1RACH

Figure 64 - Logical channel configurations

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5.6 TDMA Frame Structure


We have previously seen that the TDMA frame number is used during the encryption
process. Therefore the BTS must number the frames in a cyclic pattern and there
must be a point when the counter returns to zero. The chosen number is 2715 648
which corresponds to 3 h 28 mn 53 s and 760 ms. This structure is called a Hyper-
Frame.
One hyper-frame is then subdivided into 6028 Super-Frames, which have duration of
6.12 seconds. The super-frame itself is subdivided into Multi-Frames. There are two
types of these.
The first is a 26-Frame Multi-Frame containing 26 TDMA frames. This multi-frame is
used to carry TCH, SACCH and FACCH). 51 of these multi-frames form a super-
frame.
The second type is a 51-Frame Multi-Frame containing 51 TDMA frames. This multi-
frame is used to carry BCH and CCCH. 26 of these multi-frames form a super-frame.

Figure 65 - TDMA Frame Structure

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6 Message Flows

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In fixed networks, the subscriber is tied all the time to the switch providing the
telephony service. The wires will never be disconnected from his serving switch and
go connected to another switch.
In mobile network, designed, a subscriber is free to roam, at least, through his
network without feeling any problems.
When a call comes to a subscriber, the system should know where the subscriber is
now in order to deliver the call to him. Also if the subscriber is making a call and
moving by his mobile station from one location to another, the system should not
drop his call and must guarantee its continuity. The system must handover the call to
a cell covering the new location.
Also the system must be aware if the subscriber goes out of coverage or if he
switches off the mobile.
All the above leads us to study in the next sections the different types of traffic cases
that a subscriber may be subjected to.

6.1 Switching on the Mobile Phone


When an MS is switched on, its first task is to locate a suitable BTS through which it
can gain access to the network, if required. This is achieved by searching the
relevant frequency band for BCCH carriers and then decoding the information they
carry to select an appropriate BTS.

Initially, the MS searches the entire downlink frequency band (124 carriers for
primary GSM900) and measures the received signal strength of each carrier. The
received signal level for each carrier is determined from the average of at least 5
measurements spread evenly over a time period of 3 to 5 s. The MS then retunes to
the strongest carrier and waits for an FCCH burst; i.e. a burst of pure sine wave. If an
FCCH burst, which occurs every 10 or 11 time frames on time slot 0 of a BCCH
carrier, is not detected, then the MS retunes to the next strongest carrier and repeats
the process. Once the MS identifies a BCCH carrier by means of an FCCH burst, it
synchronizes to the BTS and attempts to demodulate the synchronization
information. The FCCH burst is used by the MS to correct its internal time base to
ensure that its carrier frequency is accurate compared with the signal received from
the BTS. The MS employs its internal time base to generate both the local versions of
RF carriers for demodulation and the clock signals for its internal counters.

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Figure 66 - Cell Selection

Having applied the relevant frequency correction, the mobile attempts to decode the
synchronization burst contained in the SCH time slot. The slot is easily located
because it always follows immediately after the FCCH time slot on the same physical
channel; i.e. 8 time slots later. The synchronization burst contains sufficient
information for the MS to identify its position within the complete GSM frame
structure. The burst contains 25 bits of information prior to channel coding and 6 of
these bits are used to transmit the BSIC. The remaining 19 bits are used to transmit
the reduced TDMA frame number (RFN) of the time slot containing the
synchronization burst.
Having successfully synchronized to the BS, the mobile may proceed to decode the
system information contained on the BCCH. The BCCH is easily located since it
always occupies the same position within the control channel multiframe. This
channel contains a number of parameters that influence the cell-selection, including
the maximum power that MS may transmit while accessing the BTS (parameter
MS_TXPWR_MAX_CCH) and the minimum received power at the MS for access (
parameter RXLEV_ACCESS_MIN). These parameters are combined with the
received power of the base station, R, and the maximum output power of the MS, P,
to produce a radio parameter known as CI given by:

CI  A  B for B  0
CI  A for B  0

Where:

A  R  RXLEV _ ACCESS _ MIN ,


B  MS _ TXPWR _ MAX _ CCH  P,

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and all values are expressed in dBm. If CI for a given BTS is greater than 0, then the
MS is considered to have the ability to access the BTS, if required. Also, the BTS
with the highest CI is considered to be the most suitable BTS as far as the radio
resource is concerned.

6.2 Location Area Update


Actually, the location update process is invited in aim to exactly identify your location
within the network so that any incoming call goes directly to the called subscriber.
To fulfill this aim, one can say that we may update the cell ID each time the
subscriber changes his serving cell. The HLR will now know the exact cell you are
roaming in. This will result in a huge amount of location update messages.
An extreme is never to make a location update and to be paged in the entire network.
This will cause huge paging messages.
A compromising solution is introduced. That‘s to divide the whole Public Land Mobile
Network (PLMN) into smaller areas. Each area is covered by an MSC. We will now
reduce the problem and you will need only to inform the system with the MSC you
are roaming in its coverage range.
Still and MSC coverage may be considered huge. Even in some countries the
network may be totally composed of a single MSC. It is impractical to page the
subscriber in the entire network.
The MSC is divided further into smaller areas each called a Location Area.
The location area is defined as a geographical area covered by a group of cells
defined in the same MSC and defined to in the Location Area.
A subscriber should now inform the network each time he changes his Location Area
so that when a call comes to him, the system will search for him in the area covered
by the cells forming the location area he is present in.

We can summarize the previously mentioned facts as follows:


Location area is a part of the MSC/VLR coverage area.
Each group of cells in the same BSC is assigned a universal unique location area
identity.
Introducing the concept of Location area enables us to make an approximate
estimation of your location.

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MSC C

MSC A
MSC B

Figure 67 - Location Areas and Coverage Areas in the same PLMN

The LAI (Location Area Identity), used for paging, indicates to the MSC in which
location area the mobile station is operating. It is also used for location updating of
mobile subscribers.
The maximum length of LAC is 16 bits, enabling 65536 different location areas to be
defined in one PLMN.

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6.3 Handover
In a cellular network, the radio and fixed voice connections are not permanently
allocated for the duration of a call. Handover, means switching an ongoing call to a
different channel or cell. The execution and measurements required for handover are
a basic function of the RR protocol layer.
There are four different handover cases:
 Intra Cell - Handover between 2 Traffic Channels in the same cell;
 Intra BSC - Handover between 2 cells belonging to the same BSC;
 Inter BSC / Intra MSC - Handover between 2 cells belonging to different
BSCs but to the same MSC;
 Inter MSC - Handover between 2 cells belonging to different BSCs and
different MSCs.

The first two types of handover involve only one base station controller (BSC). To
save signaling bandwidth, they are managed by the BSC without involving the MSC,
except to notify it upon completion of the handover. The last two types of handover
are handled by the MSCs involved. An important aspect of GSM is that the original
MSC, remains responsible for most call-related functions, with the exception of
subsequent inter-BSC handovers under the control of the new MSC, called the relay
MSC.
Handovers can be initiated by either the BSC or the MSC (as a means of traffic load
balancing). During its idle timeslots, the mobile scans the broadcast control channel
of up to 16 neighboring cells, and forms a list of the six best candidates for possible
handover, based on the received signal strength. This information is passed to the
BSC and MSC, at least once per second, and is used by the handover algorithm.
The decision on when to initiate a handover is a function of the following parameters:
 Receive quality,
 Receive level.

Successful handovers in GSM can take place at propagation speeds of up to 250


km/h.

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Figure 68 - Handover Concept

When a mobile subscriber moves from one cell to another while he is in a call, the
network should keep the continuity of this call. This process is called ―Handover‖.

6.3.1 Intra Cell Handover


A special type of handover is the intra-cell handover. It is performed when the BSC
considers the quality of the connection too low, but receives no indication from the
measurements that another cell would be better. In that case the BSC identifies
another channel in the same cell, which may offer a better quality, and the MS is
ordered to retune to it. This attempt of handover will first be tried to a channel on
another frequency. If none are available, it will perform a handover.

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6.3.2 Intra BSC Handover


When performing a handover between two cells controlled by the same BSC, the
MSC/VLR is not involved. However, the MSC/VLR will be informed when a handover
has taken place. If the handover involves different LA‘s, location updating is
performed once the call is finished.
1. The BSC orders the new BTS to activate a TCH.
2. The BSC sends a message to the MS, via the old BTS, containing information
about the frequency and time slot to change to and also the output power to use.
This information is sent to the MS using FACCH.
3. The MS tunes information yet on Timing Advance, the handover bursts are very
short (only 8 bits of information).

Figure 69 - Intra BSC handover

4. When the new BTS detects the handover bursts, it sends information about TA.
This is also sent via FACCH
5. The MS sends a Handover Complete message to the BSC via the new BTS.
6. The BSC tells the old BTS to release the old TCH.

6.3.3 Inter BSC / Intra MSC Handover


When another BSC is involved in a handover, the MSC/VLR must also be involved to
establish the connection between the two BSC‘s.
1. The serving (old) BSC sends a Handover Required message to the MSC
containing the identity of the target cell.

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2. The MSC knows which BSC controls this cell and sends a Handover Request to
this BSC.
3. The new BSC orders the target BTS to activate a TCH.
4. The new BSC sends a message to the MS via the MSC and the old BTS.
5. MS tunes to the new frequency and transmits handover access bursts in the
correct time slot.
6. When the new BTS sends information about TA.
7. MS sends a Handover Complete message to MSC via the new BSC.
8. MSC sends the old BSC an order to release the old TCH.
9. The old BSC tells the old BTS to release the TCH.

Figure 70 - Inter BSC / Intra MSC handover

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6.3.4 Inter MSC Handover


Handover between cells controlled by different MSC/VLRs can only be performed
within one PLMN and not between two PLMN‘s. Cells controlled by different
MSC/VLRs also means that they are controlled by different BSC‘s.
1. The serving (old) BSC sends a Handover Required message to the serving MSC
(MSC–A), with the identity of the target cell.
2. MSC–A identifies that this cell belongs to another MSC, (MSC–B), and requests
help.
3. MSC–B allocates a handover number to reroute the call. A Handover Request is
then sent to the new BSC.
4. The new BSC orders the target BTS to activate a TCH.
5. MSC–B receives the information, and passes it on to MSC–A together with the
handover number.
6. A link is set up to MSC–B, possibly via PSTN.
7. MSC–A sends a handover command to the MS, via the old BSC.
8. The MS tunes to the new frequency and transmits handover access bursts in the
correct time slot.
9. When the new BTS detects the handover bursts it sends information about TA.
10. The MS sends Handover Complete message to the old MSC via the new BSC
and the new MSC/VLR.
11. A new path in the group switches in MSC–A is established, and the call is
switched through.
12. The old TCH is deactivated by the old BSC.

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The old MSC, MSC–A, retains main control of the call until the call is cleared. This is
because it contains the information about the subscriber and call details such as
charging. After call release, the MS must perform location updating because a LA
never belongs to more than one MSC/VLR service area. The HLR is updated by the
VLR–B, and will in turn tell VLR–A to delete all information about the mobile
subscriber.

Figure 71 - Inter MSC handover

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6.4 MTC (Mobile Terminated Call)


1. The PSTN subscriber dials in the MS‘s telephone number (MSISDN). The
MSISDN is analyzed in the PSTN, which identifies that this is a call to a mobile
network subscriber. A connection is established to the MS‘s home GMSC.
2. The GMSC analyzes the MSISDN to find out which HLR the MS is registered in,
and queries the HLR for information about how to route the call to the serving
MSC/VLR.
3. The HLR translates MSISDN into IMSI, and determines which MSC/VLR is
currently serving the MS. The HLR also checks if the service, ―Call forwarding to
C–number‖ is activated, if so, the call is rerouted by the GMSC to that number.
4. The HLR requests an MSRN from the serving MSC/VLR.
5. The MSC/VLR returns an MSRN via HLR to the GMSC.
6. The GMSC analyses the MSRN and routes the call to the MSC/VLR.
7. The MSC/VLR knows which LA the MS is located in. A paging message is sent to
the BSC‘s controlling the LA.
8. The BSC‘s distribute the paging message to the BTSs in the desired LA. The
BTSs transmit the message over the air interface using PCH. To page the MS,
the network uses an IMSI or TMSI valid only in the current MSC/VLR service
area.
9. When the MS detects the paging message, it sends a request on RACH for a
SDCCH.
10. The BSC provides a SDCCH, using AGCH.
11. SDCCH is used for the call set-up procedures. Over SDCCH all signaling
preceding a call takes place. This includes:

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12. Marking the MS as ―active‖ in the VLR


13. The authentication procedure
14. Start ciphering
15. Equipment identification
16. The MSC/VLR instructs the BSC/TRC to allocate an idle TCH. The BTS and MS
are told to tune to the TCH. The mobile phone rings. If the subscriber answers,
the connection

Figure 72 - Mobile Terminated Call

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6.5 MOC (Mobile Originated Call)


1. The MS uses RACH to ask for a signaling channel.
2. The BSC/TRC allocates a signaling channel, using AGCH.
3. The MS sends a call set-up request via SDCCH to the MSC/VLR. Over SDCCH
all signaling preceding a call takes place. This includes:
 Marking the MS as ―active‖ in the VLR
 The authentication procedure
 Start ciphering
 Equipment identification
 Sending the B-subscriber‘s number to the network
 Checking if the subscriber has the service ―Barring of outgoing calls‖
activated
4. The MSC/VLR instructs the BSC/TRC to allocate an idle TCH. The RBS and MS
are told to tune to the TCH.
5. The MSC/VLR forwards the B–number to an exchange in the PSTN, which
establishes a connection to the subscriber.
6. If the B-subscriber answers, the connection is established.

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Figure 73 - Mobile Originated Call

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6.6 Short Messages


The Short Message Service (SMS) allows a mobile subscriber to send and receive
text messages composed of 160 characters at most. These messages can be read
on the phone‘s LCD panel and they are delivered using the signaling channel
SACCH; so short messages can be received while a call is in progress. The short
messages sent or received are handled by the Short Message Service Center
(SMSC), which consists of three parts:
Service Center SC
Short Message Service GMSC SMS-GMSC
Short Message Service Inter-working MSC SMS-IWMSC

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6.6.1 Short Message Delivery Process


1. Short message is sent to MSC1.
2. MSC1 forwards the short message to the SMS-IWMSC.
3. SMS-IWMSC passes the short message to the SC which checks the message
format and if correct stores it on a hard disk.
4. SC sends the short message with the destination MSISDN address to the SMS-
GMSC.
5. SMS-GMSC interrogates the HLR for the location of the destination mobile by
sending the message ―Send Routing Info. for SM ‖.
7. HLR responds with the VLR address of the target mobile by sending the
message ―Send Routing Info. for SM ‖.
8. SMS -GMSC sends the short message to MSC2.
9. MSC2 forwards the short message to the target mobile, and then it will be
deleted from the SC.

SC

3 4

SMS-IWMSC SMS-GMSC

2 6
7

MSC1 5 MSC2

1 HLR
8

MS 1 MS 2
MO MT

Figure 74 - Short Message Delivery Procedure

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7 Services

7.1 7.2 GSM Services


The primary objective of a mobile telephony system is to allow mobile subscribers to
communicate effectively. GSM systems provide this by offering a number of different
basic telecommunication services. The service functionality of GSM system improves
with each system release. Technical specifications are continuously being developed
in order to incorporate new and improved functions into the system.

7.2 Services Categories


There are two main types of telecommunications services, basic telecommunication
services and tele-services:

7.2.1 Basic telecommunication services


These are available to all subscribers to a mobile network. For example, the ability to
make voice calls is a basic service.
In addition, basic telecommunication services can be divided into two main
categories.

7.1.1.1 Bearer services


A bearer service transports speech and data as digital information within the network
between user interfaces. A bearer service is the capability to transfer information and
does not include the end-user equipment. Every tele-service is associated with a
bearer service. For example, a bearer service associated with the speech telephony
tele-service is the timeslot assigned to a call on a TDMA frame over the air interface.
GSM systems offer a wide range of bearer services. The DTI supports data services
offered by the system. Rates up to 57.6 kbits/s are possible.

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7.1.1.2 Tele-services
A tele-service allows the subscriber to communicate (usually via voice, fax, data or
SMS) with another subscriber. It is a complete system including necessary terminal
equipment.

7.2.2 Supplementary services


These are additional services that are available by subscription only. Call forwarding
is an example of a supplementary service.
The main supplementary services supported by GSM systems are:
 Call forwarding;
 Barring of outgoing calls;
 Barring of incoming calls;
 Advice of Charge;
 Account Codes;
 Call waiting;
 Call hold;
 Multiparty service;
 Calling line identification services;
 Connected line identification presentation/restriction;
 Closed User Group (CUG).

7.3 GSM Fax and Data Calls


Since the services supported by a PSTN network, ISDN network or GSM network
may include speech, facsimile, and data transmission, the receiving node should be
informed during call setup, what service is required and how the service is to be
performed. For example what bit rate will be used in case of data call? Information
sent at call setup from ISDN or GSM on ―how‖ the service will be performed, is called
Bearer Capabilities (BC).
ISDN and GSM have different transmission requirements and different coding
schemes, so they have different bearer capabilities referred to as ISDN-BC and
GSM-BC. PSTN cannot provide this type of information during call setup, so it
cannot distinguish between a telephony call and a fax or data call. To solve this
problem, an Additional MSISDN (AMSISDN) will be allocated to a mobile subscriber

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who has the service of receiving fax calls. If the incoming call from PSTN is a fax call,
the AMSISDN must be dialed. For an MSC to be able to handle fax or data calls, it
should be provided with a DTI. This is special equipment used for rate adaptation and
protocol conversion to allow these calls to be established to/from mobile subscribers.

7.4 CAMEL
The CAMEL Application Part (CAP) is a signalling protocol used in the Intelligent
Network (IN) architecture. CAP is a Remote Operations Service Element (ROSE)
user protocol, and as such is layered on top of the Transaction Capabilities
Application Part (TCAP) of the SS#7 protocol suite.
CAP is based on a subset of the ETSI Core and allows for the implementation of
carrier-grade, value added services such as unified messaging, prepaid, fraud control
and Freephone in both the GSM voice and GPRS data networks. CAMEL is a means
of adding intelligent applications to mobile (rather than fixed) networks. It builds upon
established practices in the fixed line telephony business that are generally classed
under the heading of (Intelligent Network Application Part) or INAP CS-2 protocol.
The CAMEL Application Part (CAP) portable software provides mechanisms to
support operator services beyond the standard GSM services for subscribers
roaming within or outside the Home PLMN (HPLMN). The CAP product extends the
IN framework to GSM/3G networks for implementing IN-based services within
GSM/3G networks.
CAMEL is used when the subscriber is roaming between networks, allowing the
home network to monitor and control calls made by the subscriber. CAMEL provides
services such as prepaid roaming services, fraud control, special numbers (e.g., 123
for voicemail that works everywhere) and closed user groups (e.g., office extension
numbers that work everywhere).
As with CAMEL, CAP has been defined in 4 phases, each of which has an
accompanying specification that builds upon the previous phase. Each CAP phase
provides the message set and procedures needed to support the corresponding
CAMEL phase requirements, as defined in 3GPP TS 22.078 (service aspects) and
3GPP TS 23.078 (technical realization).

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The definition of the protocol may be considered to be split into 3 sections:


 the definition of the Single Association Control Function (SACF)/Multiple
Association Control Function (MACF) rules for the protocol, defined within the
prose of the specification;
 the definition of the operations transferred between entities, defined using
Abstract Syntax Notation One (ASN.1);
 the definition of the actions taken at each entity, defined by means of state
transition diagrams.

CAMEL 3
1
2
Home Network

HLR gsmSCF

CAP
MAP
gprsSSF
SGSN

gsmSSF VLR gsmSSF


GMSC VMSC MS

Interrogating Visited Network


Network
gsmSRF SMSC

Figure 75 - Functional architecture of CAMEL

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7.2 Charging
Charging is a key function for every telephony network operator since it is the means
of translating network traffic into revenue. It is essential that accurate and detailed
charging data is available for billing and statistical purposes.
In the PSTN the calling subscriber is normally charged for the call. The charging is
based on the location of the called subscriber and the duration of the call.
In the PLMN, the current location of the called subscriber, who might be traveling
anywhere in the network, or roaming in other country, is not known to the calling
subscriber. The calling subscriber is however still expecting to be charged only for
the prefix dialed, and not to incur any additional charges.
Because of this, the charging system in the PLMN must be flexible enough to allow
network operators to apply the fairest charging method for all of the subscribers. To
achieve this flexibility, the mobile calls will be divided into 5 components.
It should be noted that the GSM specifications do not govern charging tariffs or
packages. Each operator decides this. It does however deal with the charging
mechanisms related to GSM mobile originated calls and with the "forwarded-to"
element (when the mobile subscriber is roaming) of a call to a GSM subscriber
(mobile terminated calls).

7.6 Structures for Tariffs and Charging


The Network Tariff structure is based on two main components:
 The network access component
 The network utilization component

7.6.1 Network Access Component


Network access charges for each subscription consist of:
 A once-off initial fee;
 A subscription charge (paid monthly or quarterly, e.g. until the subscription is
terminated).
The access charges vary according to subscription privileges and the number of
basic and supplementary services subscribed to. The network access charges are
based on data registered in the subscription handling procedures and are collected
by the home PLMN operator from subscribers.

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7.6.2 Network Utilization Component


The network utilization component is registered on a per call basis. The basic
principle is to start charging the moment the B-subscriber (or the C-subscriber if call
forwarding is activated) answers, or on connection to an answering machine
internally in the network. The main issues involved in the calculation of charging are:
 Use of GSM PLMNs;
 Use of national/international PSTNs;
 Use of connection between different networks;
 Use of Signaling System no.7 (SS7).

Network utilization charges vary according to, e.g. which country/regional area the
call is originated, its destination, day and time, use of supplementary services, if the
calling party is roaming internationally and the service used.

7.6.3 Call Components


Each call is divided into a number of components that are used in determining
charges. This facilitates the charging of the A-subscriber and B-subscriber separately
for different parts of a call. The main call components are:
 Originating Call Component
 Roaming Call Forwarding Component
 Call Forwarding Component
 Terminating Call Component
 Transiting Call Component

7.6.4 Billing Gateway


The Billing GateWay (BGW) collects CDRs in files from the network elements and
immediately forwards these to post-processing systems that use CDR files as input.
The Billing Gateway (BGW) acts as a billing interface to all network elements in a
GSM network.
The functions of the BGW include:
 Collection of billing information from network elements of different types and
releases;
 Processing of billing information;

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 Distribution of billing information to post-processing systems of different types;


 Graphical configuration and supervision of the gateway;
 Alarm handling.

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8 GSM Evolution

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8.1 HSCSD
High-speed circuit-switched data (HSCSD), is an enhancement to circuit-switched
data (CSD), the original data transmission mechanism of the GSM mobile phone
system, four times faster than GSM, with data rates up to 38.4 kbit/s. But actually on
mobile the speed is less than 15kb/s.
Like in circuit-switched data, channel allocation is done in circuit-switched mode. The
difference comes from the ability to use different coding methods and/or multiple time
slots to increase data throughput.
One innovation in HSCSD is to allow different error correction methods to be used for
data transfer. The original error correction used in GSM was designed to work at the
limits of coverage and in the worst case that GSM will handle. This means that a
large part of the GSM transmission capacity is taken up with error correction codes.
HSCSD provides different levels of possible error correction which can be used
according to the quality of the radio link. This means that in the best conditions
14.4 kbit/s can be put through a single time slot that under CSD would only carry
9.6 kbit/s, for a 50% improvement in throughput.
The other innovation in HSCSD is the ability to use multiple time slots at the same
time. Using the maximum of four time slots, this can provide an increase in maximum
transfer rate of up to 57.6 kbit/s (i.e., 4 × 14.4 kbit/s) and, even in bad radio
conditions where a higher level of error correction needs to be used, can still provide
a four times speed increase over CSD (38.4 kbit/s versus 9.6 kbit/s). By combining
up to eight GSM time slots the capacity can be increased to 115 kbit/s.
HSCSD requires the time slots being used to be fully reserved to a single user. It is
possible that either at the beginning of the call, or at some point during a call, it will
not be possible for the user's full request to be satisfied since the network is often
configured to allow normal voice calls to take precedence over additional time slots
for HSCSD users.
The user is typically charged for HSCSD at a rate higher than a normal phone call
(e.g., by the number of time slots allocated) for the total period of time that the user
has a connection active. This makes HSCSD relatively expensive in many GSM
networks and is one of the reasons that packet-switched general packet radio service
(GPRS), which typically has lower pricing (based on amount of data transferred
rather than the duration of the connection), has become more common than HSCSD.
Apart from the fact that the full allocated bandwidth of the connection is available to
the HSCSD user, HSCSD also has an advantage in GSM systems in terms of lower
average radio interface latency than GPRS. This is because the user of an HSCSD
connection does not have to wait for permission from the network to send a packet.
HSCSD is also an option in enhanced data rates for GSM evolution (EDGE) and
universal mobile telephone system (UMTS) systems where packet data transmission
rates are much higher. In the UMTS system, the advantages of HSCSD over packet
data are even lower since the UMTS radio interface has been specifically designed to
support high bandwidth, low latency packet connections. This means that the primary
reason to use HSCSD in this environment would be access to legacy dial up
systems.

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8.2 WAP
Wireless Application Protocol (commonly referred to as WAP) is an open
international standard for application layer network communications in a wireless
communication environment. Its main use is to enable access to the Mobile Web
from a mobile phone or PDA.
A WAP browser provides all of the basic services of a computer based web browser
but simplified to operate within the restrictions of a mobile phone, such as its smaller
view screen. WAP sites are websites written in, or dynamically converted to, WML
(Wireless Markup Language) and accessed via the WAP browser.
Before the introduction of WAP, service providers had extremely limited opportunities
to offer interactive data services. Interactive data applications are required to support
now commonplace activities such as:
 Email by mobile phone
 Tracking of stock market prices
 Sports results
 News headlines
 Music downloads

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8.3 GPRS
General Packet Radio Service (GPRS) is a packet-switched enhancement of
existing GSM networks. It is developed to allow large amounts of data to be sent over
cellular networks at speeds three to four times greater than conventional GSM
systems.
Because GSM is the most widely used mobile system in the world, for most operators
GPRS is the easiest and most logical way of offering customers fast simultaneous
data services, such as multimedia messaging, gaming, entertainment, and news.
GPRS users can remain on-line without continuously occupying a specific radio
channel. GPRS will use the common pool of physical resources across the radio
interface in co-existence with the existing circuit switched GSM. The same physical
channels will be used but in a more efficient way since several GPRS users will be
able to share one channel. Thus giving a better channel utilization. In addition, GPRS
channels are allocated only when data is sent or received.
One main idea of the GPRS system is that it will not necessarily consume any
capacity of the circuit switched functions in the radio path. This is possible because
the GPRS system can be premastered to use only the capacity that is left over from
the circuit switched calls and data transmission. GPRS takes the advantage of the
over-capacity, which would remain unused otherwise.

Figure 76 - The usage of the on-demand GPRS channels

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With GPRS data is handled as a series of packets that can be routed over several
paths through the network, rather than as a continuous bit-stream over a dedicated
dial-up connection.
GPRS splits information into packets, which are transmitted over any available circuit.
When there are no packets being sent by one phone, the circuits are made available
for data packets from other phones. This makes highly efficient use of available
network resources and enables the introduction of always-on mobile communication.
GPRS has no dial-up time so it is always connected to the Internet. GPRS offers
session establishment times below than one second. GPRS users have continuous
access to Mobile Internet services for as long as the phone is switched on.
GPRS is an extension of the GSM architecture; packet data traffic runs on a new
backbone IP network and is separate from the existing GSM core network that is
used for circuit switched traffic (mainly speech). Two new nodes form the
cornerstones of the GPRS backbone. The Serving GPRS Support Node (SGSN)
handles packet data traffic of users in a geographical area. The Gateway GPRS
Support Node (GGSN) connects to outside data networks. SGSN and GGSN are
routers that support mobility of terminals. GPRS uses the existing GSM radio
network. The transmission links between BTSs and BSCs are reused, which reduces
the overall cost for GPRS. GPRS also reuses other existing GSM network elements
such as the HLR and the MSC/VLR.

Figure 77 - Structure of GSM/GPRS network

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8.4 EDGE
Enhanced Data rates for GSM Evolution (EDGE) is a major enhancement to
GSM/GPRS data rates and it improves the GSM air-interface performance
significantly. EDGE offers improved data rate through optimized modulation (8-PSK)
and it introduces a large number of channel coding schemes along with Incremental
Redundancy (IR), Link Adaptation (LA) enhancements and adaptive multirate AMR.

Figure 78 - EGPRS Architecture

8.4.1 Technical fundamentals


The new modulation and the possibility to adapt the transmission rate to channel
quality are the core of the EDGE concept. Introducing EDGE in a GSM network does
not imply changes in the basic architecture. In any case, modifications of the Mobile
Station (MS), Base Station (BTS) and Base Station Controller (BSC) are needed,
which means, among other things, software and hardware upgrades in circuit- and
packet-switched parts of the network.
EDGE offers both circuit- and packet-switched connections depending on the
platform it is implemented in. The scope of the EDGE phase 1 standard is to increase
GPRS bit rate, improve GPRS link quality control (EGPRS) and to offer high circuit-
switched data rate with fewer timeslots and fast power control (ESCD). The scope of
the EDGE phase 2 includes supporting real-time services over EGPRS.

The modulation type that is used in GSM is the Gaussian minimum shift keying
(GMSK), which is a kind of phase modulation. EDGE introduces the octagonal phase
shift keying (8-PSK) modulation in addition to the existing GMSK.

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(d(3k),d(3k+1),d(3k+2))=
(0,0,0) (0,1,0)
(0,1,1)
(0,0,1) (1,1,1)

(1,0,1) (1,1,0)
(1,0,0)

Figure 79 - PSK signal constellation principle

Four different coding schemes are defined for GPRS (CS-1 to CS-4). Each has
different amounts of error-correcting coding that is optimized for different radio
environments.

Class Code rate Payload Data rate (kbps)


CS-1 1/2 181 9,05
CS-2 ~2/3 268 13,4
CS-3 ~3/4 312 15,6
CS-4 1 428 21,4

Figure 80 - GPRS coding schemes

For EGPRS nine modulation and coding schemes (MCS) are introduced. Classes
MCS-1 – MCS-4 use the basic GSM 0.3 GMSK modulation, whereas classes MCS-5
– MCS-9 use the new 8-PSK modulation. The next table shows EGPRS modulation
and coding schemes along with their maximum throughputs.

Figure 81 - EGPRS modulation and coding schemes

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8.5 The Third Generation of Mobile Systems


The future for GSM includes more subscribers, more networks and more services.
The primary concept, which is driving this future, is that of the third generation of
mobile systems.
Analog mobile networks are considered to be the first generation of mobile systems.
Digital mobile network is considered to be the second generation of mobile systems.
With the third generation of mobile systems it‘s possible to deliver several services in
parallel to each individual end user/terminal. This means subscribers to services can
carry on a voice conversation in parallel to accessing an intranet or extranet to obtain
important information or participate in a videoconference and at the same time
exchanging e-mails and/or multimedia mails.
The general concepts for third generation systems are grouped under the concept of
the International Mobile Telecommunications 2000 (IMT-2000) system, as being
defined by ITU-T. This is complemented by development of Universal Mobile
Telecommunications System (UMTS) by ETSI. UMTS aims to deliver wide-area/high-
mobility data rates of 384 Kbits/s and up to 2 Mbits/s for local-area/low-mobility
coverage.

Figure 82 - UMTS Basic Architecture

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8.4.2 Wideband Code Division Multiple Access (WCDMA)


As an access method, Code Division Multiple Access (CDMA) is an alternative to
TDMA. However, there are several key differences in implementation between TDMA
and CDMA.
The basic concept of CDMA is to simultaneously handle several users MSs without
dividing the radio carrier by time slots. Instead, each MS is given a decoding key.
Then the information for several MSs is transmitted downlink at the same time.
Functions in each MS can then be used to analyze the information and to decode
only that information which is relevant to it. Security is ensured as each MS does not
have the decoding key for other MSs and will therefore not be able to decode any
other MS‘s information. The problem of interference is avoided using an intelligent
Power Control function, but as the number of users of the same carrier increases, the
more difficult it becomes for an MS to decode its own information. For this reason, it
is desirable to have a wide bandwidth when using CDMA solutions. This leads to the
term WCDMA, operating with a 5 MHz carrier separation to fully use the inherent
benefits of code division multiple access technology.
Given the large bandwidth, each WCDMA terminal connection may access several
services simultaneously. Each service can be optimized at the required data rate and
quality.

8.4.3 UMTS Evolution


There‘s already been introduced enhancements to UMTS as like as High Speed
Downlink Packet Access (HSDPA), High Speed Uplink Packet Access (HSUPA) and
High Speed Packet Access which can offer multiple services and data rates over
28.8Mbps. These enhancements are called the generation 3G+ or 3,5.

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8.6 The Future - the Fourth Generation


The fourth generation is being developed and will offer data transmission speeds up
to 1Gbps on Non-Mobility situations and 100Mbps on Mobility situations. There were
defined two main standards:
 LTE (Long Term Evolution) by 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP);
 WIMAX (Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access) by IEEE (Institute
of Electrical and Electronics Engineers).

Figure 83 - LTE Architecture

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Figure 84 - WIMAX Architecture

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Part 2 - Introduction to UMTS


Networks

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1 Introduction

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The GSM (Global System for Mobile Telecommunications) is a numerical system of


mobile telephony established in Europe in 1995. Today, more than 1000 million
Europeans subscribe to this system, representing almost 50% of the total number of
subscribers in the world. It was within the framework of the second generation
systems, and on the GSM basis, that the concept of a world system came about,
known in Europe as the Universal Mobile Telecommunication System (UMTS).

The UMTS is the system retained by the International Telecommunication Union


(ITU), within the framework of the world project IMT2000, for the definition of a 3rd
generation (3G) mobile system. This choice was made due to the desire to promote
various mobile service multimedia, such as the appearance of an image on the
portable terminal, but also the development of mobile systems integrating the current
telephone services (GSM/GPRS).
The installation of the UMTS system, planned for the year 2002, will be done in a
progressive way and it is probable that this system will unite the various elements
already present on our networks.

The arrival of the UMTS presupposes a successful commercial deployment of the


GPRS, which constitutes the base of field IP for network GSM/UMTS. It is therefore
essential to anticipate the data communication markets‘ needs today, in order to offer
flawless UMTS services of high data flow tomorrow.

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The UMTS
(Universal Mobile Telecommunication System)
a 3rd Generation System

Figure 85 - UMTS Introduction

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2 UMTS (Universal Mobile


Telecommunication System)

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2.1 General presentation of UMTS


The UMTS (Universal Mobile Telecommunication System) is the European third
generation mobile network, which will allow the multi-media support of high flow
services and mobility, with performances higher than those currently offered by the
GSM/GPRS.
The goal of the UMTS is to cope with the enormous mobile traffic (certain systems
are already extended to their full capacity), while improving the functions (services,
mobility...) of the current systems.
The basic idea of the UMTS is also to integrate all existing networks in the various
countries into one sole network and to associate the multimedia capacities to it (high-
flow for data), as indicated by the acronym UMTS.

In this way, four points are to be retained for the UMTS standard in the future:

 The world context of standardization,


 The GMM concept(Total Multi-media Mobility),
 The introduction of multimedia services,
 The convergence of technologies.

Indeed, we notice that the systems of 3rd Generation radio communication, such as
the UMTS in Europe, aim at including a wide variety of services in future applications.
These new systems will thus facilitate use and allow the development of better
services and better mobility for the subscribers, compared to second generation
systems like the GSM/DCS.

The following paragraphs explain the difficulties encountered in the standardization of


the UMTS (not technical difficulties, but rather of a general nature).

2.1.1 World context of standardization


Each continent (the United States, Japan and Europe) studies its own standard of
third generation (3G). It is a chance to study the possibility of an international
standard allowing, for example, total roaming.
To this end, the 3rd generation system has already been given two names, although
at the beginning both refer to one reality. The system is called UMTS (Universal

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Mobile Telecommunication System) in Europe and IMT2000 (International Mobile


Telecommunication 2000) on an international layer. It is, for the moment at least, the
same system, which is supposed to be international. The system is standardized by
the European Organization of Standardization ETSI (European Telecommunication
Standart Institute), and the IMT2000 by the international organization ITU
(International Telecommunication Union).
Standardization had a positive outcome, as it made it possible to obtain the
designation of frequency bands harmonized universally in the vicinity of 2 GHz.

1800 1850 1900 1950 2000 2050 2100 2150 2200

UMTS-TDD (DL) MSS


(UL) UMTS-FDD MSS
DCS-1800 (DL) DECT UMTS-FDD (UL) UMTS-TDD (DL) (DL) (DL)
Europe 60 MHz 60 MHz
1920 1980 2110 2170

PHS IMT-2000 (UL) IMT-2000 (DL)


Japan

IS-95 (DL) IMT-2000 (UL) IMT-2000 (DL)


Korea

PCS (UL) PCS (DL)


US

Figure 86 - World context of standardization

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However, in spite of a total attribution of frequencies, the development of the mobile


services was not carried out in the same way in the three regions; faced with this
situation, two solutions were devised:

 Strive for the development of a single world standard,


 To accept the existence of a family of regional standards, in the foreground of
which is the European standard UMTS, and, in parallel, to make provisions to
ensure a certain form of interworking between its members.

The first of these two solutions seems impossible, due to market or date
complications.
The UMTS is thus the 3rd generation European standard and will have to be
compatible with other, different standards, developed on the other continents. In this
context, any development of standards or specifications, in common with other
regional organizations of standardization, should not be made to the detriment of
European requirements.

2.1.2 The GMM Concept (Global Multi-media Mobility)


The second objective for the UMTS is to offer a service of universal cover and
mobility, exceeding the limitations, which are due to the multiplicity of the systems
and the networks. Thus, a single terminal will make it possible for a user to
communicate in many environments of use; this pre-supposes multimode terminals,
usable on several infrastructures. (it will be necessary to manage a diverse range of
radioelectric covers ; from radio terminals with a weak range inside buildings to the
spots of satellites covering, for example, zones with a low population density). The
approach adopted for the UMTS, on the basis of the GMM concept, consists of an
initial development of, as we saw previously, radio access technology, known as
UTRA (UMTS Terrestrial Radio Access). This technology was conceived so as to
initially be implemented with preexistent grid systems (GSM/GPRS, IP networks...).
Thus, GSM services could be offered on the networks of UTRA access implementing
technology. For telephony, they will be with an enhanced quality of speech. It is only
subsequent to this that a transport system specific to the UMTS can be specified.
Thanks to this approach, the UMTS will probably be introduced as an extension of
the GSM/GPRS, rather than as a new, completely different, system intended to
replace it. The work of specification of the preexistent services will not need to be
resumed, and the enormous associated software developments will be re-used. It is
advisable to envisage the necessary evolutions which will make it possible to
implement all the potentialities of the UTRA, and to offer the 3rd generation services
expected from the UMTS.

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Thus, it will also be possible:

 For preexistent GSM networks, to integrate a network of access to standard


UTRA, and thus to have access to spectral UMTS resources, offering a space
of extension for those networks whose growth will probably not be finished
during the introduction of the UMTS,
 For new UMTS networks to offer the whole range of GSM services.

Figure 87 - The GMM Concept (Global Multi-media Mobility)

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2.1.3 The introduction of multimedia services


Uncertainties about the nature of the multimedia services, and their market, were the
principal difficulty encountered by the promoters of the UMTS, and this was due to
several reasons. More precisely, some uncertainties remain as regards to the
emergence of the 3rd generation of networks and mobile services.
These uncertainties relate initially to the uses and the services, which will ensure the
roll-out of the market, beyond what the GSM offers or will offer. The UMTS, at its
beginnings, will be used mainly by professionals, with a view to attracting the general
public thereafter by the services deployed (expensive).
Technical uncertainties also occur, in standardization in particular, and in the
possibility of adapting protocol IP to the requirements of mobility (the studies
undertaken for Ipv6 will allow for an easier management of mobility between the
various types of networks).
Lastly, problems of an economic and financial nature are highlighted, relating to the
cost of the deployment of a UMTS network and to the profitability that a player in this
market can expect.

2.1.4 The convergence of technologies


As we have already mentioned, one of the recommendations of the UMTS is to bring
the majority of cellular networks together in one sole network. One of the objectives
of the UMTS is, for example, to see GSM and DECT applications supported by the
same radio technology. It is difficult to envisage the exact scenario, which must be
created, but it is obvious that the various systems mentioned previously must evolve
using comparable technology.
The UMTS represents a natural evolution of GSM/GPRS systems, but must
dissociate from these as the mobile system which allows the emergence of value-
added services (i.e. Minitel, 3614/3615). The roll-out of the UMTS will be assured if it
allows a natural interfunctioning with the IP world and an international mobility, and if
it is able to interest the service providers (ISP).

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2.1.5 Plan of UMTS technology


The plan below is a initial theoretical plan, taking into account the most advanced
providers in the UMTS field. So certain countries, such as Finland, mark their
determination to deploy a first UMTS network by following this plan, slower
deployment in France could cause it to fall behind by a few months.

WCDMA CDMA2000

3GPP 3G system
3GPP2
FDD/TDD mode

Figure 88 - Planning of the introduction of the UMTS

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2.1.6 GSM/GPRS/EDGE – UMTS general evolution


The UMTS network takes into account the perennially of the GSM network‘s
investments. The work carried out by the 3GPP on future architecture rests on the
migration of a GSM/GPRS network towards a UMTS network, by considering the
probable introduction of a new operator.

It is highly probable that the UMTS will be installed by re-using the network entities
already present on the GPRS/EDGE, while adding some elements such as the GLR
(Gateway Location Register) to it, in order to facilitate the management of roaming for
example. It is however necessary that the GPRS network nodes evolve, so that it can
support future IP services within the UMTS. The idea is to combine the SGSN and
GGSN in only one node, the IGSN (Internet GPRS Support Node), and by adapting
them to use Mobile IP (for the management of inter-IGSN mobility) a standard IP
network can then become a UMTS core network.
The radio part of the UMTS (i.e. UTRAN) will be inter-connected with the current
network, thanks to IWU (InterWorking Units), and UMTS users will then be able to
access the Internet world via the nodes of the GPRS or the new IGSN.
An example of a UMTS introduction scenario in France, based on these IWU and
using all the elements already present, is presented below. This scenario is
particularly adapted to the case of an initial deployment of the UMTS on small islands
(center-cities, business zones, factories...), while the general cover is ensured by the
GSM2+ infrastructure.

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The EDGE opportunity will not be discussed in this document since it represents an
alternative way for 3G!
This solution represents the most probable evolution (in Europe) of the GSM/GPRS
towards the UMTS for the R99 release. There are others, for the 2000 release that
we intend to present later, after having provided a description of the UMTS as we
know it at the present time.

Figure 89 - The GSM/GPRS/EDGE – UMTS general evolution

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3 General structure of the UMTS

The UMTS network is a technology resulting from the organization of ETSI


standardization, which takes into account the perennially of the GSM investments.
The coordination of the work of standardization is carried out by the 3GPP-SA-WG2,
in close collaboration with the SMG 12 (which specifies the architecture for the SMG).
It thus takes into account several scenarios, amongst which the migration of a
GSM/GPRS network, and the introduction of a new operator.

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3.1 Structure of an UMTS Network


The UMTS network architecture was not fixed when the specifications were first
issued. We propose, in what follows, to describe the UMTS concept, such as it is
apprehended in the R99 release of the 3GPP work. This allows us to give a first point
of view on an UMTS architecture "resulting" directly from a GSM/GPRS network.

The work undertaken until now led to the description of the generic architecture of the
UMTS Core Network (core or heart of the network). This heart includes two fields:

 The Circuit switching field (CS) centered on the MSC,


 The Packet switching field (PS) centered on the GSN

Figure 90 - Core Network Structure according to 3GPP (release Nov. 99)

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Signalling
HLR VLR External
User data Data
Network
New nodes MSC
Gr Gs
GSM nodes
Gn Gi
Abis Gb
Um
BTS/ BSC/ SGSN GGSN
Node B RNC
Gp

Mobility Management GGSN Gateway


Authentication Ciphering Mobility Management
Routing Other Routing
PLMNs Encapsulation

Figure 91 - Simplified structure of the heart of the UMTS network

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3.1.1 CN (Core Network)


CN (Core Network) is responsible for connecting other networks as well as
communicating and managing UEs. The core network equipment of different protocol
versions in the WCDMA system differ. Generally, the R99 core network is divided into
the CS domain and the PS domain. The R4 core network is the same as the R99
core network, but in the R4 core network, the MSC function of R99 CS is
implemented by the two separate entities: MSC Server and MGW. The R5 core
network is the same as the R4 core network except that R5 has been added with an
IP multi-media domain.
The R99 core network has the following function entities:

3.1.1.1 MSC/VLR
MSC/VLR is a functional node of the CS domain in the WCDMA core network. It
connects with UTRAN via the Iu-CS interface, with external networks (such as PSTN
and ISDN) via the PSTN/ISDN interface, with HLR/AUC via the C/D interface, with
MSC/VLR, GMSC or SMC via the E interface, with SCP via the CAP interface, and
with SGSN via the Gs interface. Its main functions are call control, mobility
management, authentication and ciphering of the CS domain.

3.1.1.2 GMSC
GMSC is the gateway node between the CS domain of the WCDMA mobile network
and external networks, and it is an optional functional node. It connects with external
networks (PSTN, ISDN and other PLMN) through the PSTN/ISDN interface, connects
with HLR through the C interface and connects with SCP through the CAP interface.
It implements the routing function of incoming calls in the VMSC function and inter-
network settlement function of such external networks as fixed networks.

3.1.1.3 SGSN
SGSN (Serving GPRS Support Node) is a functional node of the PS domain in the
WCDMA core network. It connects with UTRAN through the Iu-PS interface, with
GGSN through the Gn/Gp interface, with HLR/AUC through the Gr interface, with
MSC/VLR through the Gs interface, with SCP through the CAP interface, with SMC
through the Gd interface, with CG through the Ga interface and with SGSN interface
through the Gn/Gp interface. And its main functions are route forwarding, mobility
management, authentication and ciphering of the PS domain.

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3.1.1.4 GGSN
GGSN (Gateway GPRS Supporting Node) is a functional node of the PS domain in
the WCDMA core network. It connects with SGSN through the Gn/Gp interface and
with external data networks (Internet/Intranet) through the Gi interface. It provides the
routing and encapsulation of data packets between the WCDMA mobile network and
the external data networks. Its major functions are to provide interfaces to external IP
packet networks. It needs to provide the gateway function for UE to access external
packet networks. From the point of view of external networks, GGSN looks as if it
were a router of all user IP networks in the addressable WCDMA mobile network,
and it needs to exchange routing information with external networks.

3.1.1.5 HLR
HLR (Home Location Register) is a functional node shared by the CS and PS
domains in the WCDMA core network. It connects with MSC/VLR or GMSC through
the C interface, with SGSN through the Gr interface, and with GGSN through the Gc
interface. And its main functions are to store subscription information for subscribers,
support new services and provide the enhanced authentication function.

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3.2 The Core Packet switching (PS) and the Core


Circuit switching (CS)
The PS field is based on what was already done in GPRS, in which the majority of
the operators will probably have invested from now until the deployment of the
UMTS.
This field has two principal interfaces implying the use of IP:

 The Iu interface between the RNC (Radio Network Controller; comparable with
the current BSC) and the SGSN,
 The Gn interface between the SGSN and the GGSN (already present in a
GPRS network).

In the same way as for the packet field, the circuit switching field (CS) will be based,
at the beginning, on what already exists, as regards GSM voice. The functionalities of
the MSC will be extensive, to be able to interface (via Iu) with the RNC of the
UTRAN.
These various interfaces are detailed in what follows, in the in-depth study of
interfaces.
Thereafter, and after having given a progress report on various concepts being
studied for standardization, we will present alternative solutions for the deployment of
an UMTS network. These are studied for the 2000 release, within the framework of
the ETSI UMTS Project.

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Radio Access Network (RAN)


Radio Dependent funactionalities such as
• Radio resource management
MC • Call admission
• Air interface
UTRAN CDMA • Handover (within a RAN)
• Interference management
• Medium access control
EDGE • Radio link control
GSM
3G-Core Network

IS-95

S-UMTS
Core Network (CN)
Radio independent functionalities such as
• Mobility Management
• Authentication
• Roaming

Figure 92 - Simplified structure of the heart of the UMTS network

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3.3 Core Interfaces


In the first phase of UMTS, the UMTS core network capabilities are a superset of the
phase 2+ release 99 GSM core network capabilities. The additional requirements for
the phase 1 UMTS core network are the following:
1. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall support circuit switched data service
capability of at least 64 kbit/s per user. This shall not limit the user from choosing
lower data rates.
2. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall support packet switched data service
capabilities of at least 2 Mbit/s peak bit rate per user. This shall not limit the user
from choosing lower data rates.
3. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall enable set-up, re-negotiation and clearing
of connections with a range of traffic and performance characteristics. It shall be
possible to apply traffic policing (e.g. connection admission control, flow control,
usage parameter control...) on a connection during its set-up and lifetime.
4. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall support a range of traffic and performance
characteristics for connectionless traffic.
5. The range of traffic and performance characteristics that shall be supported by
the phase 1 UMTS core network for connection oriented and connectionless
traffic shall be at least those of GPRS phase 2+ release 99.
6. Point to multipoint communication configurations as defined in TS 22.05 shall be
supported by the phase 1 UMTS core network.
7. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall allow one mobile termination to handle
more than one bearer service simultaneously and to have bearer services of
different connection modes. It is nevertheless expected that the terminal and
network capabilities will put some limitations on the number of bearer services
that can be handled simultaneously. It shall be possible for each connection to
have independent traffic and performance characteristics. It shall be possible for
each connectionless message to have independent traffic and performance
characteristics.
8. In order to facilitate the development of new applications, it shall be possible to
address applications to/from a phase 1 UMTS mobile termination in connection
oriented and connectionless traffic modes (e.g. the notion of Internet port).
9. Operator specific services based on the VHE concept shall be provided by the
phase 1 UMTS core network. This functionality could be provided through
available toolkits (such as CAMEL, MExE, WAP and SIM Toolkit).
10. If UMTS authentication is invoked while a user has services active, the
authentication shall not degrade the user services.
11. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall support the generation of standardized
charging records based upon parameters such as the dialled number, call
duration, traffic (volume, bit rate) and perceived Quality of Service provided to the
user.

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12. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall support on-line billing. Billing of 3rd party
value added services with the concept of one-stop-billing shall be supported by
the phase 1 UMTS core network through standardized procedures.
13. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall support both bilateral and (possibly via
3rd party) automatic roaming procedures to UMTS networks with improved
security as defined by SMG10.
14. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall support interworking with PSTN, N-ISDN,
GSM, X.25 and IP networks with their respective numbering schemes.
15. It shall be possible for the standardized classes of phase 1 UMTS mobile
terminals supporting the GSM BSS and UTRAN radio interfaces to roam in GSM
networks and receive GSM services.
16. Standardized protocols shall be defined for the operation, administration and
maintenance of the UMTS phase 1 core network in cooperation with ETSI TMN.
17. The USIM requirements defined for later releases of UMTS should be taken into
account in the design of the phase 1 UMTS core network.
18. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall provide an effective solution of inter-
network traffic and signalling in case of global roaming.
19. The phase 1 UMTS core network shall support facilities for monitoring and
measurement of traffic flows and characteristics within the network e.g. for
congestion control.

Figure 93 - UTRAN - Core Network

BTS BSC ISUP


MSC
MGCP/Megaco
SIGTRAN Server
BSSAP
SS7 over IP SIGTRAN (M3UA/IUA)
A Mc Mc SS7 over IP
2G BSS
SS7 over
TDM AAL2SIG
ATM/TDM/IPNb
backbone PSTN
SS7
NBAP SS7 over MGW over
Iu-CS MGW
NB RANAP ATM TDM
Iub
SS7 over
ATM CS CORE
SAAL-UNI RNC
Iu-PS
RNSAP RANAP
Iur
SS7 over
SGSN GGSN
NB Iub ATM IP Internet
backbone
RNC
SS7 over
3G RAN ATM
PS CORE

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3.4 CS Domain (Rel. 4)


Within the CS CN, Rel. 4 contains 3 new interfaces: Nc, Mc and Nb.

Nc Interface (MSC Server - MSC Server)


The Nc interface has to carry the signaling for logical call handling. This means it
must be bearer independent. Classically ISUP is used for logical call handling, but
ISUP is bearer (PCM) dependent. Hence ITU-T has defined a modification of ISUP
which is called Bearer Independent Call Control BICC. In fact, BICC is a bearer
independent version of ISUP. BICC can be transmitted using 3 different transmission
principles: "classical" SS7, SS7 over ATM or SS7 over IP.

Mc Interface (MSC Server – MGW)


When the MSC Server is doing a logical call control procedure, then the result may
be the decision to set up, release or modify transport bearer resources. But the MSC
Server no longer is in control of that, but the MGW is. Hence on the Mc interface the
MSC Server will instruct the MGW to prepare, establish, release or modify bearer
services. The Call Bearer Control CBC protocol is used for this purpose. CBC is
based on the general framework provided by H.248 / Media Gateway Control
MEGACO including UMTS specific procedures and parameters. It can use SS7 over
IP or SS7 over ATM for message transport.

Nb Interface (MGW – MGW)


On Nb user data are transmitted. The Nb User Plane UP protocol is used in a similar
way as the Iu UP protocol to transmit data transparent via Nb. Additional information
related to AMR codec can be included in the UP header. The UP uses ATM or IP for
transmission. For ATM based CN this user plane consists of AAL2 virtual channel
connections.
To configure the user data bearer service (AAL2 virtual channel connection) the
AAL2L3 protocol is required between the MGW. On Iu-CS this is called ALCAP, here
on Nb these bearer configuration protocols are called Bearer Control BC protocol.
The IP transfer uses the Real Time Protocol RTP (RFC 1889) over User Datagram
Protocol UDP and IPv6. RTP provides end-to-end network transport functions
suitable for applications transmitting real-time data, such as audio, video or
simulation data. RTP does not address resource reservation and does not guarantee
QoS for RT services.

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BICC
Bearer Independent Call Control Signalling
Adaptation Adaptation User Data
Protocols Protocols
id. to Rel. `99
MTP L3 AAL5 IP
CAP C/D MTP L2 ATM L2
MTP L1 L1 L1 Nc G-MSC
MSC Server
Server
CBC* Mc
Call Bearer Control
A / Iu
Adaptation Adaptation
Mc Protocols Protocols
AAL5 IP
ATM L2
L1 L1 I
Nb UP S
User Plane protocol CS-
CS- AAL2L3
MGW
D
A / Iu
MGW Nb =BCprotoc. RTP N
(Alcap) Adaptation
Protocols UDP
Transport Network
Control Plane AAL5 AAL2 IPv6 CS Domain
ATM ATM L2
* H.248 / MGW Control MEGACO
Rel. 4
L1 L1 L1

Figure 94 - CS Domain (Rel. 4)

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Bearer Independent Call Control BICC


BICC is a signaling protocol based on N-ISUP that is used to support narrowband
ISDN service over a broadband backbone network without interfering with interfaces
to the existing network and end-to-end services. Specified by the ITU-T in Rec.
Q.1901, BICC was designed to be fully compatible with existing networks and any
system capable of carrying voice messages. BICC supports narrowband ISDN
services independently of bearer and signaling message transport technology. ISUP
messages carry both call control CC and bearer control information, identifying the
physical bearer circuit by a Circuit Identification Code CIC. However, CIC is specific
to time-division multiplexed TDM networks. BICC was developed to be interoperable
with any type of bearer, such as those based on ATM and IP technologies, as well as
TDM. BICC separates CC and bearer connection control, transporting BICC signaling
independently of bearer control signaling. The actual bearer transport used is
transparent to the BICC signaling protocol - BICC has no knowledge of the specific
bearer technology, which is referenced in the binding information.

Call Bearer Control CBC


The call bearer control protocol CBC is used between Media Gateway MGW and
MSC Server (serving node in BICC terminology). Here the protocol has the following
main tasks:
 control bearer connection setup, modification and release;
 indication of events concerning the bearer connections;
 trigger and detection of tones and signals on the bearer;
 retrieval of statistics about the bearer connection.
Call bearer control CBC protocols are usually specific to the transport technology
used, but are also dependent on the system (e.g. UMTS). So a lot of different CBC
are needed in telecommunication. Therefore ITU-T defined a basic framework for
CBC protocols based on the standard H.248. The same framework is also provided
by IETF for IP environments, here H.248 is called Media Gateway Control
(MEGACO) protocol.

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3.5 PS Domain (Rel. 4)

The PS Domain release 4 data and signaling transmission plane consists of standard
protocols such as IP and some new specific protocols.

Um interface protocols

L1 (Layer 1):
 Enables physical transmission (TDMA, FDMA, etc.)

MAC (Medium Access Control):


The MAC controls the access signaling across the air interface, including the
management of shared transmission resources (assignment of the radio block to
multiple users on the same timeslot). The MAC achieves these functionalities by
placing a header in front of the RLC header in the RLC/MAC data and control blocks.
The MAC header contains several elements, some of which are direction-specific,
referring to the downlink or uplink.
The key parameters of MAC header are:
 Uplink status flag (USF), is sent in all downlink RLC/MAC blocks and indicates
the owner or use of the next uplink radio block on the same timeslot.
 Relative reserved block period (RRBP), identifies a single uplink block in which
the mobile phone will transmit control information.
 Payload type (PT), the type of data (control block or data block) contained in the
remainder of the RLC/MAC block.
 Countdown value (CV), is sent by the mobile to allow the network to calculate
the number of RLC data blocks remaining in the current uplink TBF.

RLC (Radio Link Control):


Responsible for a number of functions:
 Transferring LLC-PDUs between the LLC layer and the MAC function
 Segmentation of LLC-PDUs into RLC data blocks and re-assembly of RLC data
blocks to fit into TDMA frame blocks
 Segmentation and re-assembly of RLC/MAC control messages into RLC/MAC
control blocks transmission of RLC data blocks.

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The RLC segmentation function is a process of taking one or more LLC-PDUs and
dividing them into smaller RLC blocks. The LLC-PDUs are known collectively as a
temporary block flow (TBF) and are allocated the resources of one or more packet
data channels (PDCH).

The TBF is temporary and is maintained only for the duration of the data transfer.
Each TBF is assigned a temporary flow identity (TFI) by the network.

The RLC data blocks consist of an RLC header, an RLC data unit, and spare bits.
The RLC data block along with a MAC header may be encoded using one of four
defined coding schemes. The coding scheme is critical in deciding the segmentation
process.

Gb interface protocols

SNDCP (Sub Network Dependent Convergence Protocol):


Used between the SGSN and the mobile phone. This protocol converts the network
layer PDUs (N-PDUs) on the Gn interface into a format suitable for the underlying
GPRS network architecture.
SNDCP performs a number of functions:
 Multiplexing of N-PDUs from one or several network layer entities onto the
appropriate LLC connection
 Buffering of N-PDUs for the acknowledged service
 Delivery sequence management for each NSAPI
 Compression and decompression of the protocol information and user data
 Segmentation and reassembly of the compressed data to the maximum length
of the LLC-PDU
 Negotiation of the control parameters (XID) between SNDCP entities.

LLC (logical link control):


Protocol provides a highly reliable, ciphered logical link between the SGSN and the
mobile phone. The LLC uses both acknowledged and unacknowledged modes of
frame transmission, depending on a user‘s negotiated quality of service. This protocol
also manages frame re-transmission, buffering, and information length based on the
negotiated QoS delay class.

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BSSGP (base station system GPRS protocol):


It routes information between the SGSN and the BSS. This protocol conveys QoS
information but does not carry out any form of error correction. Its primary function is
to provide radio-related information for use by the radio link control (RLC) and
medium access control (MAC) functions on the air interface.
The LLC layer uses the services of the BSSGP for data transfer. The relay function at
the BSS transfers LLC frames between the RLC/MAC layer and the BSSGP layer.
The BSSGP sends information to the network services layers to determine the
transfer destination.

FR (Frame Relay):
The Network Service (NS) layer transports the BSSGP data packets. NS is based on
frame relay, which thus represents the link layer protocol for the connection between
SGSN and PCU (Gb interface). NS is specified in GSM Rec. 08.16.

L1bis:
Refers to the Physical Layer of the Gb interface. L1bis is realized through E1/T1
(PCM30/PCM24) technology.

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Gn interface protocols

L2, L1:
L2 and L1 are GPRS-internal link and physical layer. L2 and L1 are situated outside
the area of GPRS definition. Operator-specific solutions are used here.

GTP (GPRS Tunneling Protocol):


Receives IP datagram and X.25 packets from the external network and tunnels them
across the GPRS support nodes. Because there will be multiple GGSN and SGSN
interfaces, the GTP provides for every packet a tunnel identifier (TID) that identifies
the destination and transaction to which the packet/datagram belongs. Transactions
are identified using logical identifiers as well as the IMSI.

TCP/UDP:
UDP and TCP respectively are used for the transfer of data packets encapsulated by
the GTP across the GPRS backbone network. The protocol needed for this is called
UDP. It has to be supported by all GSNs as minimum solution. It transports data
packets (GTP PDUs) of protocols which don't require a safe data connection (e.g.
IP). UDP also protects transmission against data corruption/mutilation. TCPs have to
be supported in the GSNs whenever data packets of protocols have to be
transported, requiring safe data connections (e.g. X.25). TCP ensures the flow
control and provides protection against loss of data and data corruption.

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Application Application

IP/X.25 IP/X.25 IP IP

SNDCP SNDCP GTP GTP L2 L2

LLC LLC UDP/ UDP/


TCP TCP

RLC RLC BSSGP BSSGP IP IP

MAC MAC FR FR L2 L2

L1 L1 L1bis L1bis L1 L1 L1 L1

Um Gb Gn Gi

MS BSS SGSN GGSN ISP

Figure 95 - PS protocol stack

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IP (Internet Protocol):
Used to route user data and signaling information across the Gn interface. The IP
datagram size will be limited to the physical layer - maximum transmission unit (MTU)
capabilities. An IP datagram can be as large as 65,535 octets, but if the physical
layer MTU is less than this, fragmentation must be done. The source gateway
support node (GGSN or SGSN) has to first decide the MTU size and then carry out
the fragmentation. The IP addressing used will route the data across the Gn
interface, including any intermediate GSNs (gateway support nodes), to the GSN
address at the final destination.

Gi interface protocols

L2 and L1:
L2 and L1 are the link layer and physical layer of the external networks connected via
the Gi-interface to the GSM-GPRS-PLMN. As such, L2‗ and L1‗ are situated outside
the GPRS definition area. However, there has to be an agreement in terms of these
layers functions between the different network operators (GSM-PLMN and PDN)
interconnected via the Gi-interface, or between the GSM network operator and a
transit network.

Application Header + Data

20 Octets

TCP Header 0-1460Octets


20 Octets

IP Header 20-1480 Octets

4 Octets

SNDCP Header 40-1500 Octets

4 Octets 3 Octets

LLC Header 44-1504 Octets FCS

Header <20-50 Octets


RLC / MAC Header <20-50 Octets
Header <20-50 Octets

Layer 1

Figure 96 - PDU segmentation

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3.6 ATM Signalling


As transmission technology advanced, the analog transmission infrastructure was
replaced by digital transmission systems. This change resulted in better quality of
service (QoS) and lower cost for service providers. Initially, these digital transmission
systems were based on plesiochronous digital hierarchy (PDH) technology. However,
with rapid developments in optical and high-speed switching technologies,
synchronous digital hierarchy (SDH) replaced these PDH systems. This greatly
simplified the transmission network and allowed for interoperability between high-
bandwidth equipment.
Signaling also evolved from primitive forms of channel associated signaling (CAS)–
based to common channel signaling (CCS)–based signaling system 7 (SS7) CCS
had several advantages over CAS in terms of ease of implementation, centralized
control, and lower equipment costs. Additionally, the high reliability of SS7, coupled
with faster operations and increased capabilities, proved to be an important point in
the evolution. SS7 provided the signaling capability with which the users could
specify QoS requirements—in terms of bandwidth—from the network. End-to-end
digital connections could now be set up and torn down dynamically. SS7 signaling
also allowed services other than voice.
However, the switching technology at the core of the telecommunication networks
continued to be circuits witched, which severely limited the spectrum of services that
could be provided efficiently overAAL2
these networks.
Signalling

MGW MGW

AAL2 SIG (Q.2630.1) AAL2 SIG (Q.2630.1)


STC (Q.2150.1) STC (Q.2150.1)
MTP3b MTP3b
SSCF- NNI SSCF- NNI
SSCOP SSCOP
AAL5 AAL5
ATM ATM
Physical Physical

Figure 97 - AAL2 Signaling

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For, in a circuit-switched connection, the entire bandwidth is dedicated for the entire
duration of the call. The service providers incurred high costs in providing premium
services such as motion-video and high-speed remote access for distributed
computing. Another option was to install separate networks (for example, frame-relay
networks) to carry traffic for these premium services.
From the point-of-view of carriers, this arrangement was not a cost-effective one. It
meant deploying two, almost totally disjointed networks. The costs of such an
arrangement, in terms of duplicated physical plants, transmission facilities, and
management capabilities, were substantial. These problems propelled the search for
a multiservice technology that could efficiently carry all types of traffic at a very high
speed on a single transmission system.
In-spite of growth in ATM networks, SS7 networks will continue to exist. Among the
major reasons are huge investments that have been made in these networks and the
fact that in a large number of geographical areas around the world little need exists
for services other than the basic ones.
It is also possible that ATM is introduced only in the toll network to maintain the
stability of the services offered by SS7 networks. It is evident that even as ATM
networks come up, SS7–based narrowband networks will continue to exist and grow.
This can result in primarily two types of network configurations in which interworking
between these two networks is required. In one of these scenarios, SS7–based
narrowband networks are connected through an ATM backbone network. This
backbone ATM network could possibly be owned by an independent carrier.

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AAL Type 2 Signaling in 3G Network

The advantage of using AAL2 as the adaptation layer is that it allows for voice
compression, and silence detection and removal. AAL5 is also used, as it is required
for signaling and thus present in virtually every ATM node.

• AAL type 2 signaling provides setup and release of AAL2 connections in 3G


Radio Access Network
• AAL2 connections are used in:
• Iu between RNC and 3G-MSC/MGW
• Iur between two RNCs
• Iub between BS and RNC

AAL2 Signalling

MGW

Interworking
RANAP BSSAP

Generic SCCP
Platform scope

Generic MTP-3

SSCF-NNI
MTP-2
SSCOP
AAL5 MTP-1

ATM TDM

RNC Iu A' MSC

Figure 98 - AAL2 Signalling

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3.7 SIGTRAN
SIGTRAN, a protocol family based on work done in the Internet Engineering Task
Force (IETF), is the evolution of SS7.
SIGTRAN (Signaling Transport) is a Working Group of the IETF.
The primary purpose of this working group will be to address the transport of packet-
based PSTN signaling over IP Networks, taking into account functional and
performance requirements of the PSTN signaling.
The SIGTRAN architecture model (RFC 2719) includes 3 main components:
 Adaptation Sub layer
 Signaling transport protocol
 Standard IP

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The following adaptation sub layers already published: M2PA, M2UA, M3UA, SUA,
IUA

SIGTRAN Protocols

MTP-3 MTP-3 ISUP/SCCP TCAP Q.931(DSS1)

M2PA M2UA M3UA SUA IUA


adapts adapts adapts SS7 adapts TC adapts
MTP-3 to MTP-3 to User Parts User Parts protocols on
SCTP SCTP to SCTP to SCTP top of Q.921
to SCTP
(RFC3331) (RFC4165) (RFC3332) (RFC3868)
(RFC3057)

SCTP (RFC4960)

IP

Figure 99 - SIGTRAN Protocols

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3.8 IP network and UMTS


UMTS is an evolution of GSM networks towards data transmission and broadband
access. The core network is divided into a packet switched domain, (PS), and a
circuit switched domain, (CS).
In release 5 (R5) of UMTS studied in 3GPP, the CS domain is an evolution of
classical GSM MSC towards NGN: split of MSC into Gateway MSC (G-MSC) for
transport and MSC Server for call control. The PS domain is based on two platforms:
SGSN and GGSN. The SGSN has an interface with the radio access network while
the GGSN is on the IP backbone side.
In UMTS R5, an Internet Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) is introduced. IMS is mainly
composed of a CSCF (Call State Control Function) and a MGCF (Media Gateway
Control Function). The PS domain associated with the IMS allows UMTS R5 to offer
VoIP services. CSCF controls admission, incoming calls and communicates with
HSS, (Home Subscriber Server), which is a customer database dealing with mobility
and service profile. The MGCF controls gateways that perform inter-working between
PSTN and IP network. SIP protocol has been chosen by 3GPP for UMTS R5. From a
strict functional viewpoint, except for the mobility aspect, a CSCF is a SIP server.
Post R5 release proposes an evolution of PS domain towards NGN: externalization
of some control functions in SGSN and GGSN. The next figure shows this evolution.
3GPP2 is considering IP for the mobility management. In these "full IP" scenarios
mobile IP is a key component.

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Application Application servers (WAP, MExE , … )


SCP
SCP AP
AP AP
AP AP
AP AP
AP

CAP CAP CAP


Mh R-SGW
R-SGW
Cx Ms
HSS
HSS CSCF
CSCF
Gc Mm
Network Service EIR
EIR Mg Legacy
and Control D Gr C Gi Signaling
Gf Y MGCF
MGCF
SGSNS
SGSNS GGSNS
GGSNS Network
MSCS
MSCS GMSCS
GMSCS
Nc
Mr Mc
Mc X Mc X
Iu MRF
MRF T-SGW
T-SGW
Gi
Transport Transport
Transport Platform Platform
(MGW, GSN) (MGW, GSN)

Iu
Multimedia
UTRAN
UTRA PSTN IP Network

Figure 100 - NGN introduction in CS and PS domains: post R5 architecture

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3.9 Mobile IP
Obviously both for UMTS and fixed networks, mobility is a key feature to reach the
target NGN. Mobile IP deals with mechanisms needed to manage macro-mobility at
the IP level. Mobile IP mainly allows:
 communication hold-on when a mobile moves from an IP sub-network to
another,
 the use of the same IP address attached to a mobile and valid in all IP
networks.

The mobile IP architecture is composed of three main elements:


 Mobility functions within the mobile node. This function is mandatory in the
terminal and performs moving detection function (from an IP sub-network to
another) and registration functions to a home agent, (HA), or a foreign agent,
(FA).
 Home Agent function. This mandatory function is performed in the router that
connects the home sub-network of the mobile. HA function is in charge of
updating the information database for mobile location and reemitting to this
location datagrams addressed to the mobile initial home location.
 Foreign Agent function. This mandatory function is performed in the router that
connects the visited sub-network of the mobile. The FA function registers
visiting mobiles and offers services such as datagrams routing to visiting
mobiles.

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As a conclusion IP network could both handle macro-mobility (e.g. in target NGN and
partly in UMTS networks) and telephony services, thanks to respectively mobile IP
and to SIP or H323 architectures.

HA
IP Network
NC
DATA

Sub Network Home Sub Network


FA
Register

Visited Sub Network

NM

Figure 101 - Mobile IP architecture and principles.

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3.10 QoS support


The QoS support is a major requirement for the next generation IP networks. Best
effort services have been provided up to now but the introduction of new services
such as voice, videoconference and streaming requires more stringent QoS levels.
Moreover, customers have differentiated needs that should be fulfilled by
differentiated QoS levels.
In the future, IP networks should support several QoS levels, namely absolute QoS,
relative QoS and best effort. Absolute QoS provides a strong guarantee on the
different service parameters. This guarantee is independent of the other services.
Relative QoS provides relative guarantees among different service classes. Best
effort does not provide any guarantee.
The QoS support is a complex issue for many reasons:
 it is an end-to-end feature that involves every equipment in the path between
the source and the destination possibly spanning several administrative
domains,
 it involves every layer of the transfer plane and requires coordinated
mechanisms and procedures in the transfer, control and management planes,
 different mechanisms and procedures must be used at different time scales
(classification, conditioning, queuing, scheduling at microseconds, signalling at
seconds, traffic engineering at hours/days, QoS monitoring at
seconds/months),
 the QoS is characterized by a number of parameters that are often difficult to
measure accurately and must be estimated over a long period.
 Moreover the QoS support in IP networks is made more complex by the
connectionless nature of IP protocols.

One way to provide a perfect QoS would be to have unlimited bandwidth all over the
network. This approach is pushed by the fast progress in optical techniques,
especially in DWDM. It may be relevant for the long term but it does not seem
appropriate in the short and medium terms for the following reasons:
 unlimited bandwidth must be associated with unlimited switching but these
unlimited resources are still very expensive,
 unlimited resources are not easy to provide in the access network,
 capacity planning will not be easy because of the generalized mobility and
fast-evolving applications,
 every application will receive the higher QoS level even if it does not require
this level and will pay for it.

Several concepts and mechanisms have been proposed to support QoS over IP
networks. These concepts are still evolving.

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The Integrated Services (IS) model aims at supporting best effort, real-time and
controlled load services as requested by the applications. This model is based on
flow classification, resource reservation, admission control and packet scheduling. An
explicit reservation protocol (RSVP) carrying flow specifications is used end-to-end to
reserve resources within the routers. The IS model suffers from scalability issues in
large backbone networks because of the per-application state within the network.
The Differentiated Services (DS) model aims at implementing scalable service
differentiation in the Internet without the need for per-application state at every hop.
This model describes several mechanisms in the network nodes that can be used to
build a variety of services. Packets are classified and marked by a code point in the
IP header at network boundaries and each node along the path performs a specific
per-hop behaviour (PHB) packet forwarding according to the code point. PHBs have
been defined for the support of several service classes such as best effort service,
real-time service and assured service. The DS model specifies mechanisms in the
transfer plane but lacks control protocols and management tools to provide network-
wide services.
The two previous IP service models do not completely meet the QoS requirements.
Multi Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) has been first introduced to simplify and
accelerate the forwarding within a packet network. In an MPLS domain, Label Switch
Paths (LSP) can be automatically established for the transport of IP flow aggregates.
A signalling protocol is used for the distribution of the labels among the nodes.
In addition to traffic aggregation, MPLS is valuable in such areas as traffic
engineering, path protection and VPN support.
MPLS traffic engineering introduces explicit LSPs associated with attributes such as
traffic parameters, priority, re-emption, resilience and policing. LSPs are established
by a signalling protocol that reserves resources in each node. LSP routing requires
IGP extensions for resource advertisement and a constraint-based routing process in
the nodes. Admission control must be performed at two levels: firstly at the edge for
the admission of the IP flows within the LSPs, secondly for the admission of the LSPs
within the transmission a path.
MPLS traffic engineering can be extended for the support of Differentiated Services .
In this case, traffic engineering is performed at a per-class level instead of an
aggregated level. Per-class-type information must be associated with LSPs and
handled by the signalling protocol, IGP extensions and the constraint-based routing
process.
Generalized MPLS extends MPLS signalling to include time-division, wavelength and
spatial switching, paving the way to integrated IP/MPLS/DWDM networks supporting
very high bandwidth.
We have addressed some possible solutions for the QoS support at the transport
level. There are a number of additional issues surrounding QoS at this level and
higher levels. We can mention:
 QoS-enabled applications,
 QoS policy management and enforcement,
 QoS control through static, dynamic or scheduled procedures,

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 QoS monitoring at the network and customer levels,


 per-QoS class accounting and charging,
 inter-domain QoS support,
 QoS economic model between peers.
A full QoS support is very complex to implement in packet networks and its
introduction will be progressive by necessity.

3.11 IPv6 migration


Due to the exponential growth of the Internet, the lack of Ipv4 addresses has been
the primary reason for the evolution of the IP protocols. More generally speaking,
Ipv4 has not been designed for a generalized use in public networks and the current
deployment highlights a number of limitations. However IPv4 is still evolving in order
to prolong its lifetime. For instance, techniques such as Classless Inter Domain
Routing (CIDR) or Network Address Translator (NAT) allow alleviating the addressing
issue.

IPv6 has been designed to fix the IPv4 limitations (not only the addressing issue) in
order to meet the requirements for a large-scale worldwide deployment.

IPv6 supports a number of enhanced features, such as:


 larger unicast and multicast address space,
 anycast address,
 aggregatable addressing for hierarchical routing,
 host address auto configuration,
 easy site renumbering,
 flow identification for QoS support,
 streamlined packet formats for improved forwarding performance,
 multicast support (explicit scope),
 extension headers used for supplementary capabilities,
 security providing packet authentication and encryption,
 mobility improvement through auto configuration, security, anycast address
and destination options.

IPv6 protocols will play a central role in the future packet networks. However there is
a large amount of IPv4 equipment currently deployed in public and private networks

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and both protocols will coexist for a long time. Several transition mechanisms have
been incorporated in the Ipv6 design to help with the migration phase.

3.12 UTRAN Interfaces


The UTRAN, composed of these various elements, will be stressed on an ATM
transport layer. Indeed, contrary to current BSS architecture of the GSM, it is not
sufficient to be limited to a transmission on MIC.

3.12.1 The point of Iu reference


Initially, the UMTS will be based on GSM/GPRS networks, i.e. a directed circuit
switching (CS) field, and a packet switching field (PS). Due to the differences
between these fields, the point of Iu reference will be established by two authorities,
one for each field. This allows the development of each field according to its
particular characteristics.

3.12.2 General principles of the Iu interface


The Iu interface is the point of reference or interconnection between the RNC and the
Core network. In the vocabulary of the UTRAN, it is the point of reference between
the RNS and the Core network (but parallel work on the subject explains that the
point of Iu termination, from the UTRAN point of view, is more precisely the RNC,
which forms part of the RNS).
The Iu interface is independent of the mode of transmission of the radio interface
(TDD or FDD) and covers the data and speech services. It uses the RANAP protocol
(Radio Access Network Application Part) which ensures, amongst others, the
following functions:

 Establishment of connections at the Iu interface layer,


 Re-allocation of Serving RNC,
 The ―handover‖.

This protocol will be clarified hereafter.

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The signalling protocol of the Iu interface is common to both fields of the core
network. The signalling support remains to be confirmed by the standardization
authorities, but the code 7 SCCP on an ATM transport layer is a very probable
choice, at least in the initial phase of the UMTS, for a great number of manufacturers
and operators.
In the field of user data, the Iu interface ends in the ISDN (MSC) network core, with
the ATM and the AAL2 for speech and data in circuit mode, whereas AAL5 is the
solution adopted for Iu connection to the IP (SGSN) field.
For this last interface, the exact package multiplexing protocol on the AAL5 layer is
an evolution of GSM/GPRS ―GPRS Tunnelling Protocol‖ (GTP).

Knowing that the UTRAN increases the association of various protocols circulating
through the Iu interface, it is necessary that there is:
 A common collection of RAB services offered to the nodes of the core network
(3G MSC or 3G SGSN) by the UTRAN,
 A common separation between the UTRAN and the nodes of the core network,
without taking account of their type (3G MSC or 3G SGSN),
 A signalling in the plan of radio network control, independent of the selected
layers of transport.

Thus the objectives of the Iu interface are to:


 Inter-connect the RNCs (Radio Network Controller) with the access point to the
core network in one PLMN, as we have already stated,
 Support UMTS services,
 Facilitate the use, in the same way, of RNC, MSC or SGSN in all the PLMNs,
 Allow interworking with the GSM core network,
 Maintain the independence between the layers of protocol, and between the
plan of signalling and the user,
 Allow evolution, independent of the core network technology, of the access to
the radio network and the transport network,

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 Allow evolution separate to the O&M (Operation and Maintenance) functions,


 To facilitate the migration of the CS field service to the PS field. In particular,
RANAP (Radio Access Network Application Part) protocol will be common to
both fields and the protocols of the user plan of the Iu interface will be
independent of the core network field.

Figure 102 - Iu PS protocol structure

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The user data is transported from the RNC through Iu, then via the 3G-SGSN,
through Gn to the GGSN.

It is possible to use a tunnelling protocol, corresponding to an evolution of the "user


plane part" of the GTP, used for the GPRS with UDP/IP.

The plan of the user data in the PS field of the UMTS core network is composed of
two tunnels:
 A IP/UDP/GTP tunnel between a RNC and a 3G-SGSN through Iu,
 A IP/UDP/GTP tunnel between a 3G-SGSN and a GGSN through Gn.

This architecture:
 Allows a RNC to be directly connected to the backbone of the IP field,
 Assures routing of all the traffic through the 3G-SGSN, which authorizes the use
of functions such as Charging or Lawful Interception,
 Allows a relatively easy insertion of the transport protocols for the low layers on
Gn and/or Iu, in case of a future need.

3.12.2.1 Plan of Control of the IuPS interfaces


As we can see by the preceding diagram, standardization makes it possible for the
operators to choose between two types of protocol stack for the transport of SCCP
signalling messages.

The SCCP layer provides the following services:


 Off-line (class 0) mode,
 Off-line with guarantee of the sequencing of the transmitted messages (class 1)
mode,
 Directed connection (class 2) mode.

MTP3-B allows routing of messages, discrimination and distribution for only one
point-to-point connection.
SSCF-NNI (Service Specific Function Coordination), SSCOP (Service Specific
Connection Oriented Protocol) and AAL5 (ATM Adaptation To bush-hammer 5)

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under-layers form the SAAL-NNI (Signalling ATM Adaptation To bush-hammer -


Network Node Interface) layer.
The SCTP (Simple Control Protocol Transmission) layer was developed by the
Sigtran work group of the IETF, with the aim of being able to transport various
signalling protocols through an IP network.
The ITUN layer refers to "SS7 ISUP Tunnelling", also developed by Sigtran.

3.12.2.2 IU CS protocol stack

Figure 103 - IU CS protocol stack

This field will initially be based on what already exists, as regards to "classic" GSM
voice.
The functionalities of the MSC will be diverse, so that it can interface (via Iu of CS)
with the RNC of the UMTS.

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3.12.2.3 RANAP (Radio Access Network Application Part)


protocol
This signalling protocol has the following functions:
 SRNC (Serving Radio operator Network Controller) displacement,
 Management of the RAB (installation, modification and release),
 Release of all the Iu resources,
 Control of overloading on the Iu interface,
 Sending UE Common Id to the RNC,
 ―Paging‖ a user,
 Control of activity tracking of an UE,
 Transport of NAS (Not Access Stratum) information between the UE and the
core network,
 Control of security in the UTRAN,
 Control of localization reports of an UE.

3.12.3 The Iur interface

3.12.3.1 General principles of the Iur interface


The Iur interface is a point-to-point interface between 2 RNC/S in the UTRAN. It
supports the signalling exchanges between 2 RNCs, the Iur data flow. Logically, this
interface should be a point-to-point link between RNS. But the physical realization
can not be a point-to-point link.

Objectives of the Iur interface


This interface makes it possible to inter-connect different manufacturers‘ RNC, to
support the continuity, between RNS, of UTRAN services offered via the Iu interface,
The Iur interface makes it possible for a RRC (Radio Resource Controller) to add or
remove radio connections of cells belonging to any RNS in PLMN.
A RNC can communicate with any other RNC from the same PLMN, in order to
establish signalling supports through the Iur interface.
A RNC can communicate with any other RNC from the same PLMN, in order to
establish data carriers for an Iur data flow.

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The Iur interface connects the RNC Drift and the RNC Serving. Several types of data
circulate there;
They are classified in the following way:
 Radio information related to signalling,
 Iub/Iur DCH (Dedicated Transport Channel) data flows,
 Iur RACH (Random Access Channel) data flows,
 Iur FACH (Forward Access Channel) data flows,
 Iur DSCH (Down-link Shared Channel) data flows,
 Iur USCH (Up-link Shared Channel) data flows for the TDD.

The principal functions of the Iur are related to the soft handover of the dedicated
channels. Iur allows the Serving RNC to request that the Drift transistor RNC add or
remove a radio link on a RRC connection, and modify the characteristics of a radio
support.
This interface results from the macro diversity and the soft handover used with
CDMA technology. As for the Iu interface, the signalling support of this interface
remains to be decided. The code 7 SCCP is also a very probable candidate. The
transmission rests on AAL2.
This interface can be commutated in the core network, in order to avoid the
interconnection of all RNCs. This remains nevertheless a manufacturer‘s choice.

Figure 104 - Protocol stack on the Iur interface

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3.12.3.2 RNSAP (Radio Network Subsystem Application Part)


protocol

This protocol must provide signalling information through the Iur interface. RNSAP
makes it possible to connect 2 RNC.

The procedures of the RANSAP are divided into 4 categories:


 RNSAP BASIC Mobility Procedures allowing the use and maintenance of
mobility within a PLMN,
 RNSAP DCH procedure allowing the maintenance of the DCH channel between
2 RNS,
 RNSAP Common Transport Channel Procedures,
 RNSAP Global Procedures

3.12.4 The Iub interface

3.12.4.1 General principles of the Iub interface


The Iub interface makes it possible to connect the B nodes to the RNC. The
specification of this interface makes it possible to facilitate the interconnection of the
RNC and the B nodes of various manufacturers.

The Iub interface connects the RNC to the B node. Several types of data circulate
there:
 NBAP (Node B Application Protocol) signalling which manages call control and
the OAM functions,
 Data circulating on dedicated channels. It has the same format on the Iub and
the Iur. The heading of these frames contains synchronization and quality
estimation information, the body of the frame is transmitted (or received) on the
radio interface...
 The data of the common channels circulating on the Iub - three types of flow are
defined: a channel going up and a channel going down used for signalling or the

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transmission from small package users, a channel going down, shared in order
to multiplex several users on the same physical resource.

The Iub interface, comparable with the Abis interface in GSM, transports both the
data related to signalling with the nodes B and the branches of traffic with the
terminal. Unlike the GSM, several Iub branches of communication can be used for
one terminal, all these branches transporting the same user information.

This interface is proposed for standardization, and a logical model of Node B was
recently approved by the ETSI. The standardization authorities have opted for a
support layer of the signalling control protocol of this interface, based on the "ATM
User to Network Interface" The transmission part itself is based on AAL2.

Figure 105 - Stack of protocols in the Iub interfaces

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3.12.5 Structure of the radio interface


The radio interface is composed of the lower layers of the UTRAN network. These
layers are closely related to the concept of "services capabilities", and more
concretely to the definition and the management of the bearer services, which are the
founding bricks of any UMTS service. The principal role of these layers is to manage
the transmission of each service, in order to ensure the necessary QoS.

The radio interface is stratified in 3 protocol layers:

 The physical layer which serves as a support for the transmission.


 The connection layer which is in charge of the allocation of resources and the
configuration of the parameters concerning the QoS. This layer itself is
subdivided into:
1. The MAC layer (lower layer) which dynamically controls the mobile‘s data flow
priorities,
2. The RLC layer which allows the reconfiguration of the retransmission protocol,
in order to modify the QoS; this layer is divided into a plan of control and a user
plan.

 The network layer, which also maintains the division in plane C and plane U.
On the C plane, the network layer is, in turn, divided into:
1. The RRC (Radio Resource Control) layer,
2. The CC (Call Control) layer,
3. The MM (Mobility Management) layer.

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Figure 106 - Radio Interface Protocol Stack

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3.12.5.1 The physical layer


This layer is used as support for a transmission of information coming from the higher
layers. Its principal mission is the management of the transmission of the frames of
bits in the physical environment.
Transport services carried out by this layer are characterized by the type of
transferred information, and by the method of sending data on the radio interface.
This characterization results in the definition of a series of channels between the L1
layer and the MAC layer, called transport channels. The goal of these channels is to
transport information coming from the RLC layer by the logical channels. The relation
between these channels and the channels transmitted by the physical layer (physical
channels) are detailed in the diagram below.

The definition of the logical channels and the projection of the transport channels into
physical channels depend on the method of duplexing employed for transmission
(FDD or TDD). These definitions are detailed in the sections dedicated to these 2
modes.

Apart from the transport function, the L1 layer also has the following functions:
 Execution of the soft handover,
 Detection and signalling of errors on the transport channels,
 Staggering, interlacing and multiplexing of the transport channels,
 Projection, on physical channels, of the channels obtained after the staggering,
interlacing and multiplexing of the transport channels,
 The control of the power emitted by the physical channels,
 Modulation and staggering of the physical channels,
 Synchronization of frequency and time.

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Figure 107 - Relation Between the Different Types of Channels

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3.12.5.2 The MAC Layer


The 2 principal services carried out by this layer are:
 The transfer of data coming from the RLC layer (by the logical channels) to the
L1 layer (through the transport channels),
 The reassignation of resources, according to the RRC layer‘s signalling. The
RRC layer can also request the reassignation of the MAC layer‘s parameters
(like the identity of the mobile or the type of transport channel).

The RLC Layer

The RLC layer has as its principal functions:


 Reconfiguration of the retransmission protocol, to modify the QoS,
 Notification of the higher layers of any irrevocable errors,
 Correction of errors,
 Control of flow.

3.12.5.3 The RRC Layer


The RRC layer is the most significant layer from the service point of view, since it is
in charge of resource management and the control of QoS.

Indeed, the RRC protocol controls and signals the allocation of radio resources to the
mobile. From the measurements carried out by the lower layers, the RRC determines
which resources are available. The services offered by the RRC are:
 General Control: The RRC takes care of the reiterated diffusion of the
messages coming from the higher layers on all the mobiles belonging to a
particular zone,
 Notification: the RRC protocol also takes care of the diffusion of paging
messages to particular mobiles in specific zones,
 Dedicated Control: Allows the transfer of messages to a particular mobile
through a point-to-point or multipoint connection.
The principal functions fulfilled by the RRC layer are:
 Diffusion of information to all mobiles (those of the superior layers and those of
the radio layers),
 Management of RRC connections between the mobiles and the UTRAN,

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 Establishment, reconfiguration and release of the radio carriers allocated to a


mobile on the user-plane,
 Establishment, reconfiguration and release of the radio resources allocated to a
mobile on the user and control planes,
 Management of the parameters relating to the mobility of an RRC connection,
as in the case of the handover,
 Management of the resource allocation between cells,
 Ensuring the QoS requested for the RAB (Radio Access Bearer),
 Control of the measurements and measurement procedures developed for the
mobile,
 Control of the coding between the mobile and the UTRAN,
 Selection and reselection of the initial cell in inactive mode.

Figure 108 - Summary of the protocol architecture of the radio interface

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3.13 Functions of UTRAN


The functions ensured by the UTRAN are:

 Functions relating to the access controls of the overall system: admission


control, congestion control, system information broadcasting,
 Functions relating to security: the use of Temporary Identifier, radio channel
ciphering, radio channel deciphering,
 Functions relating to handovers: radio environment survey, handover decision,
Macro-diversity control, handover control, handover execution, handover
completion, SRNS Relocation, Inter-system handover,
 Functions relating to the control and management of the radio resources: radio
bearer control, reservation and release of physical radio channels, allocation
and deallocation of physical radio channels, packet data transfer over radio
function, RF power control, RF, power setting, radio channel coding and
decoding, channel coding control, initial (random) access detection and
handling, CN distribution function for non access stratum messages.

The UTRAN must also ensure data transmission to the core network. At the time of
communication in connected mode, each entity of the UTRAN has a protocol function
to carry out. In the following diagram the distribution of the layers between the entities
is illustrated.

Figure 109 - Basic structure of the protocol in off-line mode

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3.14 Radio network architecture: UTRAN (UMTS


Terrestrial Radio Access Network)
The UMTS access network is relatively similar, in its configuration, to the GSM
access network; it is characterized however by its functions. It supports both the
directed service circuits and the directed service packet.

The following diagram presents the general architecture of the UMTS access network
still called UTRAN.

This radio network consists of RNC (Radio Network Controller) and Node B (base
station) which play a role close to the BSC (Base Controller Station) and BTS (Base
Transceiver Station) of the GSM. The terminal communicates with the network using
W-CDMA (Wideband Code Division Multiple Access) technology in the paired part
band of the spectrum (interior/exterior environment, broad cover for services of high
flow data under conditions of varied mobility) and TD-CDMA (Time Division- CDMA)
in its non-paired part band (interior environment, cover reduced for high flow services
under conditions of restricted mobility). The following chapter is entirely devoted to
radio transmission and, in particular, to these two access methods.

Figure 110 - UMTS Radio Network Architecture: UTRAN

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3.14.1 Definition of the different elements of the


UTRAN

3.14.1.1 The cell / node B

Cell:
A cell is defined by a cell identity diffused on a physical channel.
In the vocabulary used by SMG groups for the UMTS, there is often confusion
between the American definition and the European definition, with regards to the
use of the terms "cell" and "sector" for the second generation mobile systems (cell
[Europe]=sector[US] and site[Europe]=cell[US]). Normally in Europe one uses the
term "site" to indicate the (three) cells of a site which is divided into (three) sectors.
However, in a former ETSI Technical Report the term "cell" is used to define the
geographical area in which the radio cover of a base station extends, and the fact
that a cell brings together one or more sectors. This definition is aligned with
American vocabulary.
Moreover, in the UMTS jargon, a cell correspond to one frequency and a sector
means n cells.

Node B:
Is a logical node responsible for the transmission and reception by radio between
one or more cells to the UE. It is connected to the RNC by the Iub interface. Its
equivalent in GSM is the base station.
However, one cannot use base station as a definition of the node B, because a
base station refers to a shared place for all the radio equipment which is at the
same place (concept of co-localization) and which serves one or more cells.
However, until now, the Node B has been a logical entity, which can be distributed
between several physical entities such as a site controller, radio equipment and
transmission equipment, which will not obligatorily be co-localised.
The Node B consists of a collection of equipment: base stations and site
controllers, which are charged, for example, with managing a first layer of macro
diversity called "softer handover". The implementation of the macro diversity within
the Node B is not standardized. The Node B is responsible for the radio
transmission on the layer of its cells: coding, interlacing, measurements of quality,
multiplexing of the logical channels on the physical channels, etc...

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The specifications of the Node B are based on the owner and, as shown in the
following diagram, it can be made up:

1. Either simply of a base station,


2. Or of a site controller, upon which the base stations depend,
3. Or of an SHC (Softer handover Controller), managing the site controllers.

Figure 111 - The cell / node B

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3.14.1.2 The RNC

Radio Network Controller:


The RNS‘ equipment that is in charge of the control of the use and the integrity of the
radio resources. The RNC will be discussed in more detail hereafter.

Controlling RNC :
One of the RNC‘s roles relates to a specific set of Nodes B. There is only one
Controlling RNC for each Node B. The Controlling RNC controls the logical
resources of the Nodes B that are allotted to him.

3.14.1.3 The RNS

Radio Network Subsystem :


The part of a UMTS access network that offers the allowance and the release of the
specific radio resources, in order to establish a connection between a UE and the
UTRAN. It is responsible for the resources and the transmission/reception in a unit of
cells.

Serving RNS:
One of the roles that can be assigned to a RNS in the event of specific connection
between a UE and the UTRAN. There is always a serving RNS for each UE that has
a connection to the UTRAN. The serving RNS is responsible for the radio connection
between a UE and the UTRAN. The serving RNS ends the Iu interface for this UE.

Drift RNS :
Another role that can be assigned to a RNS for specific connections between a UE
and the UTRAN. The Drift RNS helps the serving RNS by allowing it the use of radio
resources when the connection between the UTRAN and the UE requires the use of
one or more cells (which are controled by the Drift RNS).

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3.14.1.4 Operation of the RNC


Two roles of the RNC (Serving and Drift) were introduced in order to manage the
inter-RNC handovers. These roles apply in a decorolated way between the various
communications established through RNCs. In fact, the same RNC can be a Serving
RNC for one communication and a Drift RNC for another communication. Each
communication implements a Serving RNC, but only one can pass by zero or several
Drift RNC. The following diagram shows a mobile in a phase of macro diversity, and
makes it possible to identify which RNC plays the role of Serving and which plays the
role of Drift in a communication. Indeed, a mobile in a phase of macro diversity
maintains at least two active radio links, with two different base stations for example,
and the roles of the RNCs are specified as follows.

Figure 112 - Definition of "Serving RNC" and "Drift RNC "

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3.14.2 Role of the serving RNC


The serving RNC is the RNC which manages radio connections with the mobile, and
which is used as a fastening point to the core network by the access network
interface/core network (e.g. Iu interfaces). Managing radio connections, it controls
and carries out the handover.

3.14.2.1 Role of the Drift RNC


In relation to the Serving RNC, one of the Drift RNC‘s roles is to manage the physical
(radio) resources of the base stations that depend on it (Controlling function). The
Drift RNC can carry out the recombination of links (macro diversity when two or
several radio links are established with the base stations that are attached to it). It
"routes" the user data to the Serving RNC in the rising direction and to the base
stations in the downlink direction.

3.14.2.2 Re-allocation of Serving RNS (SRNS Relocation).


The relocation procedure of Serving RNS consists of changing the physical interface
between the UMTS access network and the core network after a handover; the Drift
RNC thus becomes Serving RNC.
The relocation procedure of Serving RNS is necessary to the optimization of the
transmission resources in the access network. It is started by the Serving RNS.
During the relocation procedure of Serving RNS, the point of macro diversity control
and the point of termination of the Iu change the RNC. The release conditions will not
be standardized. The significant characteristic of this procedure is that no data user
must be lost.

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Basic principles.
Logical separation between the signalling networks and data transmission.
Macro diversity (defined later on) is carried out and controlled in the UTRAN.
The UTRAN and Core Network functions are separated from the transport functions.
The addressing used in UTRAN and also in the Core Network should not be related
to the addressing used for the transport functions. Among the functions of the
UTRAN (functions relating to the access to the network), the functions of the core
network (functions relating to commutation and localization) can be co-localised
(placement in the same equipment) with some of the transport functions; even if
these functions are normally separate.
Mobility concerning a RRC connection (developed later on) is controlled by the
UTRAN.

Figure 113 – Serving and Drift RNC

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3.14.2.3 The concept of Stratum access


Within the framework of the UMTS, fields (domains) and layers (strata) are
discussed.
A field is the group of highest level physical entities. Points of reference are defined
between the fields.
A layer is the grouping of the protocols associated with an aspect of the services
provided by one or more fields.
The physical aspects are modelled by using the concept of field and the functional
aspects are modelled by using the concept of layer.

The various fields of the UMTS are:

 User Equipment Domain, separated into


Mobile Equipment Domain (ME),
User Services Identity Module Domain (USIM).
 Infrastructure domain, separated into
Access Network Domain, characterized by direct contact with the user‘s
Equipment,
Core Network Domain.

The point of reference between the field of network access (Access Network Domain)
and the field of the network core (Core Network Domain) is called the Iu reference
point.

The following layers were identified in the UMTS:


 Application stratum,
 Home stratum,
 Serving stratum,
 Transport stratum.

The Access Stratum, which is specific to the UMTS, is the part of the transport
stratum that is located between the end node of the serving core network domain and
the mobile terminal (UE).

The Access Stratum is the functional grouping, which is composed of the parts of the
infrastructure, of the user‘s equipment and of the protocols between these parts

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which are specific to the access technique (the way in which the physical media
between the equipment of the user and the infrastructure are used to transport
information).

The Access Stratum provides services related to data transmission above the radio
interface and to the management of the radio interface towards the other parts of the
UMTS.
 The handover and macro diversity (if it is applied in the same access network)
are handled inside the access stratum.
 The handover between two access networks (for example, between two
URANs, i.e. two different operators or, between an URAN and a GSM BSS) will
use the support of the Core Network.

Figure 114 - The concept of Stratum access

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3.14.2.4 Mobility Management (mobility handling)


The management of mobility takes largely account of the principles of the
GSM/GPRS, in order not to compromise roaming between GSM and UMTS systems,
a vital aspect of the commercial success of the UMTS.
In addition, mobility management reintroduces principles such as Location area and
Routing area.
The functional structure in layers of the UMTS imposes a management of radio
mobility inside the UTRAN. A new identity, necessary to the routing and the
identification in the radio network, thus appears (Radio Network Temporary Identity)

Dedicated Connections
The UE (User Equipment) can either have a dedicated connection or not.

It is established through the access point of the dedicated control service


(Dedicated Control Service Access Point, DC-SAP) of Access Stratum. In this
case, the Core Network can reach the UE by the dedicated SAP connection in the
Core Network. The UTRAN thus has a context with the UE and the Core Network
for this particular connection. This context is erased when connection is released.
The dedicated connection can only be initialized by the UE.

According to its activity, the nearest cell knows the current localization of the UE
(in the case of a high activity) or in a wider zone, made up of several cells (low
activity).
This makes it possible to reduce the number of localization update messages for
the terminals, characterized by low activity, which move. That also makes it
possible to eliminate the need for sending paging messages for the terminals
(UEs) whose site is known on the layer of a cell.

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Non-dedicated Connections
In this case, the Core Network must reach the UE via the SAP Notification. The
message sent to the UE can be a request to the UE for the establishment of a
dedicated connection. The UE is reached by its user/terminal identity in a
―geographical area‖.

Figure 115 - Mobility Management (mobility handling)

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3.14.2.5 Consequences of the processing of mobility


Radio access to the UTRAN is achieved by specific procedures. This means that all
mobility in the access network must be handled in the UTRAN.
It is therefore deduced that the structure of the network cells should not necessarily
be known outside the UTRAN.
When there is a dedicated connection with the UE, the UTRAN handles the mobility
of the UE‘s radio interface. This includes procedures such as soft handover, and
procedures to handle mobility in the request for access procedures (RACH) and
paging (PCH).
When there is no dedicated connection with the UE, there is no need for any
information on the UE within the UTRAN. In this case, mobility is handled directly
between the UE and the Core Network, outside the Access Stratum (for example by
means of the registration procedures).
During paging, the Core Network indicates "a geographical area", which is
communicated at once by the UTRAN to the corresponding cells. A "geographical
area" is identified independently of the structure of the cell, thanks to the identities of
the localization zones.
The UTRAN does not contain any permanent register of localization for the UE, but
only a register of provisional contexts for the dedicated connection time. This context
can typically contain localization information, for example current UE cells, and
information about the allocated radio resources and the relative R references to
connection.

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Figure 116 - Consequences of the processing of mobility

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3.15 UMTS Services

3.15.1 Preliminaries
Initially, UMTS services will be complementary to those of the GSM/GPRS. Systems
such as the UMTS should be able to provide in particular, to complement the high
flow services that are their reason for being, a service of high quality vocal telephony.
We will therefore initially see, i.e. phase 1 of the UMTS, a certain recovery between
the UMTS and GSM services. Since GSM networks, conceived initially for
radiotelephony, also allow data transmission applications (GPRS...). We will
eventually have a set of multimedia services comparable to those that we have
thanks to the Internet (services such as FTP or online "surfing" will then be this
system‘s usual services).
A no exhaustive list of UMTS services is given below.

List of UMTS services

 Services specific to the mobile (already realized by the GSM):


1. Enhanced voice quality,
2. E-mail,
3. Fax,
4. SMS (Short Message Service).

 Multimedia services (UMTS mainly):


1. Average flow: < 1Mb/s ex: consultation of Web pages,
2. High flow: approximately 1Mb/s ex: graphics, video clips,
3. High interactivity: approximately 2Mb/s ex: videoconference...

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These services will allow many applications, such as:

 Information:
1. Surfing on the Web,
2. Interactive shopping,
3. Transactions online,
4. Intelligent research of information and sorting possibilities...

 Education
1. Virtual school,
2. Online science laboratory,
3. Online library.

Quality (BER)

conversational

streaming

interactive

background

Time delay

Figure 117 - UMTS Services (I)

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Error Conversational Streaming audio


Voice messaging Fax
tolerant voice and video and video

E-commerce, E-mail arrival


Error Telnet, WWW browsing, FTP, still image, notification
intolerant interactive games paging

Conversational Interactive Streaming Background


(delay <<1 sec) (delay approx.1 sec) (delay <10 sec) (delay >10 sec)

Figure 118 - UMTS Services (II)

 Entertainment:
1. Music on request,
2. Games on request,
3. Videos,
4. Virtual Visits (museum...).

 Public services:
1. Emergency services,
2. Administrative Procedures.

 Professional information:
1. "Mobile Office",
2. Professional TV channel,
3. Virtual work groups.

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 Communication services (personal communication):


1. Visiophony,
2. Videoconference,
3. People localisation.

 Financial services
1. Virtual bank,
2. Online invoicing,
3. Universal/personal SIM card and credit card.

The vectors of these services will then be:


 Internet: 128kb/s bi-directional,
 Internet: 384kb/s towards the mobile and 128kb/s coming from the mobile,
 Video Diffusion about 1Mb/s.

BER and maximum time of BER and maximum time of


Relative environment &
transfer for services transfer for services
speed
Real time not real time

Rural: Maximum time of Maximum time of


Flow > 144 kb/s transfer  [20 ; 300 ms] transfer >150 ms
Speed < 500km/h BER  [10-3 ; 10-7 ] BER  [10-5 ; 10-8 ]
Limit rural-urban: Maximum time of Maximum time of
Flow > 384 kb/s transfer  [20 ; 300 ms] transfer >150 ms
Speed < 120km/h BER  [10-3 ; 10-7 ] BER  [10-5 ; 10-8 ]
Urban: Maximum time of Maximum time of
Flow = 2048 kb/s transfer  [20 ; 300 ms] transfer  [20 ; 300 ms]
Speed < 10km/h BER  [10-3 ; 10-7 ] BER  [10-3 ; 10-7 ]

Figure 119 - Typical values of the parameters related to service quality

Note: As of its launch in 2002, the UMTS will probably allow flows of 144kb/s in rural
zones, 384 kb/s in urban zones in unguaranteed package mode and 64 kb/s in circuit
mode.

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Thus, we can theoretically calculate times of loading of the system, and account for
the convenience brought, compared to the GSM:

Systems GSM GPRS UMTS


Flows 9.6 kb/s 120 kb/s 2 Mb/s

E-mail (10 kB) 8 sec 0.8 sec 0.004 sec


Web page (9 kB) 9 sec 0.8 sec 0.004 sec
File (txt : 40 kB) 33 sec 3 sec 0.2 sec
File (graph : 2MB) 28 min 2 min 7 sec
File midday (60 kB) 50 sec 4 sec 0.2 sec
Photo JPEG (100 kB) 83 sec 7 sec 0.4 sec
Clip video (4 MB) 48 min 4 min 14 sec

Figure 120 - Time of loading of the various radio-mobile systems

3.15.2 Concept of Services


The implementation of services, within the framework of the UMTS, differs from the
existing solutions, by the introduction of a concept of modularity, which allows the
development of applications specific to the operator and the user. The UMTS thus
offers the possibility of services on request.
The services are built "to measure" by the operator or the service provider, starting
with the combination of one or more preset basic modules called " bearer services "
with environments of service creation like the "SIM (Application) Toolkit", "MExE" or
"CAMEL".

This solution brings a greater flexibility on:


 Possible flows, which oscillate around the 2Mb/s as we saw, for the Indoor
environment, 384 kb/s for the outdoor and suburban environments and a
minimum of 144 kb/s for the rural environment,
 Configuration of the flow of information, which can vary during communication to
adapt to the conditions imposed by: existing traffic, needs for the service... The
parameters likely to be modified are very varied (flow, applications in progress,
degree of asymmetry, parameter concerning QoS...),
 The type of connection (package or circuit), which is a parameter closely related
to QoS of each application,
 The characteristics of the application, which can be adapted according to the
preferences of the user,

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 The number of possible applications in progress,


 QoS required by each application...

The structure of a UMTS service is modelled on the following figure. Each application
can be composed of a combination of " service capabilities " (bearer services and
environment of services or mechanisms) and of a unit of characteristics suitable for
the service. This concept allows the development of both standardized services and
more specific services, at the same time.

Figure 121 - Relation between the services, the service capabilities and the network

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3.15.2.1 Service Capabilities


The service capabilities are founding blocks for each service. The principal
characteristic of the UMTS, from the service aspect, is, precisely, the standardization
of the service capabilities instead of standardizing the services from end to end.
The use of these building blocks allows:
 A more flexible design of new services,
 A better effectiveness in the use of network resources, while adapting more
easily to the characteristics of discontinuity and asymmetry of most of the
applications.

A combination of the bearer services and the service environments (mechanisms)


forms the service capabilities.
This standardization of the services capabilities should provide an " operating
platform " which will support, in the long term, all the multimedia supports (voice,
data, video...; i.e. § " Service Capability Servers ", figure " Representation of the
Capabilities Services in the UMTS phase 1").

Bearer Services
Under the term bearer services (carrying services or supports) is included a whole
series of parameters, related to the lower layers, which make it possible to provide
the means necessary for the transmission of information. These parameters are
classified in two large groups:
 Parameters related to the transfer of information (and the throughput offered),
 Parameters related to the quality of service transferred.

Each bearer service is characterized by a concrete configuration of the values of


each parameter.

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Figure 122 - Bearer Services

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Parameters related to the transfer of information


Through the values of these parameters, the network can decide which resources are
needed for the correct development of the required service.

1. Connected mode for communication:


 With connection (a mode which makes it possible to maintain the order of the
delivery of the information sent, but which requires some time to establish),
 Without connection (a mode which does not offer guarantees on the order of
delivered information but does not require a phase of establishment).

2. The type of traffic emitted by the source:


 Constant flow (employed for the sources which need a fixed quantity of
resources during the connection time),
 Variable flow (used by the sources which need to allocate dynamic quantities of
resources during the communication); allows the source to control its minimum,
average and peak flows,
 Available flow (used by the network for the control of the flow necessary for the
sources which need to allocate dynamic quantities of resources during
communication),
 Non-specified flow (employed by the techniques of " best effort " for the traffic of
sources that do not need a specific quantity of resources reserved during
communication).

3. The symmetry of communication:


 One-way Communication (or simplex) uplink or downlink,
 Bidirectional Communication (or duplex) symmetrical or asymmetrical.

4. The type of communication:


 Point-to-point,
 Point to multipoint (multicast or broadcast)

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Parameters related to the quality of information


The values of these parameters allow the management of the Quality of Service
(QoS) of the connection. This QoS can be redefined during the communication,
according to the needs of the service associated with each bearer service. The
principal parameters identified until now are:

5. The maximum transfer delay


6. Variation of the delay
7. The BER (error rate per bit)

Figure 123 - Parameters related to the transfer of information

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Service Environment

The service environment allows the operator, or the service provider, to develop his
own services on the network and the mobiles. To this end, in phase 1 of the UMTS,
improved versions of the preexistant GSM tools will be employed:

 The SIM Application Toolkit (SAT),


 CAMEL,
 MExE.

Note: These tools can be used in an individual way, or by combining them,


according to the requirements of the application.

The Sim Application Toolkit (SAT)


The SIM Toolkit is, at the present time, the maturest technology for the integration of
services to the mobile environment. It makes it possible to support all the new mobile
applications, that the service providers can download, on the SIM card itself.

The SIM Toolkit, proposed by TTP COM, makes it possible for the application to
carry out:
 Downloads of configuration: This instruction is sent by the mobile to the SIM
card for initialization. This is used to indicate which SIM Toolkit application
controls the mobile,
 The Proactive SIM: provides a mechanism by which the SIM card can ask the
mobile to carry out certain actions. These include: displaying a given message,
playing a given tone, taking input from a user, displaying a menu, sending a
short message, establishing communication, giving general information...
 Download of data,
 Access to a selection menu,
 Call control.

These mechanisms make it possible for SIM applications to generate powerful


sequences, managed using menus on the mobile, and which can interact with the
services available on the network.

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In short, through the SIM Toolkit, the SIM card can be programmed and can support
applications that are seen and heard on the mobile. The applications can be entirely
defined by the operator and additional menus can be installed on the terminal by the
card.

Figure 124 - Service Environment

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MExE (Mobile Station (Application) Environment Execution)


MExE allows, when it is established in a mobile station (MS), a standardized
execution of the applications quoted previously (like the SIM Toolkit). Its advantage,
compared to the previous services environment, is that it offers a greater
compatibility with the providers‘ MExE services, and this whatever the type of
terminal. The MS can then be considered differently, since it adapts to the MExE
providers‘ services.
The network can thus be considered, on the one hand, as a " bearer " (carrying) for
applications between MExE server and MS using this environment, and on the other
hand, as a simple wire (pipe) connecting two terminals using the MExE environment,
without even playing the role of MExE server (dialogue between two MS' MExE
applications of two subscribers).
The MExE applications are of course becoming increasingly numerous, and the MS
should therefore be capable of supporting them. To cure this problem, it was
necessary to consider classifying the MExE applications, so that the MS could know
whether or not it could support the application that it had received. This MExE
classification (known as " classmark ") must be established in the MExE terminals
and within the applications to be able:
 To know the capacities of one MS to support certain MExE applications,
 To identify and classify the MS MExE.

Thus, the applications (known as MExE applications) could be sent through the
network for specific terminals, whether or not they support these various applications:
MExE' MS classmark 1, classmark 2.
The applications based on MExE classmarks will work on WAP protocol (Wireless
Application Protocol) studied in the rest of this paragraph. This last is very interesting
because it is a protocol independent of the network standard, completely open,
extendable to new networks or means of communication.
This standard will be applicable to GSM900/1800, CDMA IS-95, and TDMA IS-136
standards, as well as to the 3rd generation standards, like the UMTS and the
IMT2000 standards to come (W-CDMA, CDMA 2000…).
The language which will provide " navigational support " (welcome/display of data,
layout of text and the image...) will be the WML (Wireless Markup Language), very
easy to use, because very close to the HTML.

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Note: The concept of services being new and very vague, it is envisaged that the
user who wishes to receive such services will have to subscribe to the MExE
services. In the same way, the supply of these services (which are specific to each
subscriber) seems difficult to ensure during displacement, because the operator of an
HPLMN (Home PLMN) can ensure only one VPLMN (Visited PLMN) provides the
same access to these services.

Figure 125 - MExE (Mobile Station (Application) Environment Execution)

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3.15.2.2 CAMEL (Customized Applications for Mobile network Enhanced Logic)

The concept of IN : Intelligent Network


The network architectures, which have been developed up until today, make it
possible to take only very simple services, one sole application, into account. For
example, one can ask for an e-mail service, a file transferals service, a transactional
processing service, etc. Several applications begin to be linked, carrying out one new
service. But the complexity increases enormously as soon as one leaves the data-
processing applications defined within the framework of the ISO, and as soon as one
actually wants to manage the application as a whole. Indeed, the user wishes to have
a global view of the service they are asking for, from its operation to the cost that they
will have to bear, through to the problems of security and quality and service.
In the very near future, the users will come to define their own service, based on the
adequacy of the service to the structure and the operation of their company. The goal
of the intelligent network is to set-up and adapt the existing infrastructure to deal with
the functionalities of the new service. This is what the CAMEL technology (phase 1),
already presents in the last phase of the GSM, does.
In order to clearly understand the interest and the operation of CAMEL, it is
necessary to consider the concept of an intelligent network: IN as in Intelligent
Network. Contrary to the fixed telephone exchanges, which were conceived initially
to commutate telephone circuits, the mobile networks use the concept of an
intelligent network, which consists on the one hand of separating the functions
suitable for each application or each service, and on the other hand of the processing
common to all applications (detection of MS switching/power on...). The phone
centers manage only this last part and are thus seen as switches of access to the
services or SPP (Service Switching Point).
On the other hand, the processing specific to the services are thus integrated into
computers, called points of service command (SCP: Service Control Point), able to
exchange signals with the SSP.
Such an approach allows a more flexible development of new services by the
introduction of some SCP only into different switches.
Moreover, this architecture makes it possible for the operator to be more independent
of the provider of ―switching‖ and to call upon service companies to develop the new
services which they wish to introduce.
When a specific service is required, SSP (MSC/VLR in the case of mobile telephony)
and SCP exchange messages of pure signals in real time, being based on the SS7
network.
For example, if a subscriber uses a new service, then the various entities intervening
in the course of the call remain the same, but the signal to be emitted or received
could be treated within the SCP.
The following diagram represents the general architecture of the " intelligent mobile "
network

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Figure 126 - General architecture of the "Intelligent Mobile" network associated with CAMEL phase 1 technology

This diagram shows the various signals transmitted in the network; we notice that,
contrary to the basic GSM network, the signals concerning a subscriber using
CAMEL (environment CAMEL) technology pass by the point of service control, where
they are treated according to the service fixed by the subscriber or the operator.

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New procedures
It may be that the subscriber is located in a VPLMN that does not support CAMEL
technology (it is not connected to a CSE or another entity using the CAMEL
environment).
In this case, the HPLMN has the possibility of authorizing or not authorizing the
incoming and/or outgoing calls. If this PLMN authorizes these calls, OSS will not be
ensured with roaming.
In the same way, it may be that a subscriber is travelling in a network where the
CAMEL environment uses an older version of that used in the HPLMN (ex: Phase 3
in the HPLMN and phase 1 in the VPLMN).
In this case, the VPLMN tells the HPLMN which phase of CAMEL it can support, and
this last will have to then adapt these services to the phase indicated.
Lastly, we have noted since the beginning of this paragraph that any procedure,
whatever it is, passes by the CSE; it thus appears logical that this last can reject
requests for CAMEL from subscriber(s) of V/IPLMN.

3.15.2.3 Virtual Home Environment (VHE)


The Virtual Home Environment is a concept that makes it possible for the user to
personalize their service environment and to access their environment, whatever the
network or terminal being used.
MExE/CAMEL, for example, will be " mechanisms " which will be used to support and
to parameterize the VHE.
The characteristics of the VHE, which are in fact the characteristics of the
environment required by the subscriber for certain services, are regarded as user
data. They will thus be stored with the user‘s profile and will make it possible to
personalize all the subscriber services quoted previously (personalization from the
QoS point of view...). The configuration required by the user will depend only on the
USIM card (UMTS SIM Card) used (and thus on the restrictions on certain services at
the time of subscription), on the capacity of the network visited to provide certain
services, and on the terminal used. Indeed, a user having access to the majority of
the suggested services can, if they are not working on an adequate terminal, find
themself refused access to applications which have however been specified in their
VHE (and are supported by their USIM); in this case, it is expected that the
subscriber is informed of it by a simple message.
The VHE will thus be created by a combination of the various capacities/autorisations
to supply the service, defined by the service provider, the operator and the terminal.
From the service point of view, the subscriber‘s profile is therefore defined by these
three facts.
Lastly, for application purposes, it is necessary for these characteristics to be
supported by API MExE (if it is the MExE environment that is used).

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Note: The term API (Application Programming Interfaces) is used to define the entity
that, within the terminal and the environment used (CAMEL, MExE...), will carry out
the application. All the terminals will then have, whatever their class, a basic API
heart (core) (known as an API MExE' MS core), which can be improved to exploit to
the maximum all the functions offered by the service providers.

Figure 127 - Structure of Virtual Home Environment

As an example of services offered by this system, it is possible to quote the


configuration of the environment according to the type of call, the choice of the
language of the advertisements or the controlling of the price of communication.

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The VHE in the UMTS phase 1

As of its launch in 2002, the VHE of this phase of the UMTS will be able to offer:

 GSM services and an international mobility (roaming service),


 Some basic capabilities services:

8. From the Bearer‘s point of view:


1. Package and circuit switching,
9. SMS services (Short Message Service) and USSD (Unstructured Supplementary
Service Data)

10. From the mechanisms (creation of services) point of view:


1. CAMEL,
2. MExE,
3. SAT.

Providers of services capabilities (SCS: Service Capability Servers)


The servers of service capabilities are entities that give access to the bearer
services. They are composed of several entities which allow, for example, the CC in
the case of CAMEL service, (Call Control; localization, the sending of information
towards a PLMN...)

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Figure 128 - Realization of the VHE in phase 1 of UMTS

Note: It is reminded that a " service feature " is not specific to a creation of service
(CAMEL, SAT...) since standardized interfaces are specified between the services
capabilities, services and the networks (protocols MAP, CAP...)

3.15.2.4 The Services Capabilities in the CAMEL environment

Call Control (CC)


CAMEL technology already makes it possible to organize a subscriber‘s incoming
calls (and outgoing); indeed, a CAMEL subscriber can access various CC services
and has the possibility of:
 Returning all incoming calls,
 Diverting these calls towards a number to be specified,
 Integrating/erasing in a grouped call,
 Picking-up a conference call after having been on hold...

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Call Forwarding (CF)


This service (already used in CAMEL phase 1) makes it possible for a subscriber to
sort incoming calls, i.e. to authorize the reception of all calls or only calls with special
criteria (such as professional calls for example). These criteria, contained in the CSI,
thus form part of the user‘s profile. This last can activate its call selection criteria
whenever required (known as activation of UCF: Unconditional Call Forwarding); this
is of course accompanied by basic services in the event of impossibility or abnormal
operation of the selection criteria.

Call Waiting (CW)


Call Waiting is the service known as ―double call‖; a subscriber already in
communication can receive a message telling him that a third person wishes to
establish a connection with him. The person is then put on standby, but it is
necessary to maintain a virtual connection with them to be able to resume
communication once the second call is finished. This service is already offered by
CAMEL phase 1.

The Unstructured Supplementary Service Data (USSD).

There are two modes of USSD:


 A mode allowing the transfer of a data message; network to MS (and
reciprocally; from the mobile to the network) with approximately 600kb/s-
1000kb/s; it is indeed a displayable message transfer by the user: known as
"USSD MMI mode",
 A mode corresponding to the transmission of signalling messages, intended for
the applications located in the mobile/network, carried out with the same flow;
known as "applicable USSD mode".

The Conference Call (MultiParty Service: MPTY)


This service allows a user, or rather several users, to be able to converse
simultaneously.
A condition that makes this service possible (apart from the fact that the various
speakers have access to this service and can activate it is that the first subscriber (a)
is in communication with a user (b) and also has a third person on standby (c).
Within this condition, the application of the MS can request the activation of a
grouped call from the network. Once this call is carried out, it is possible for new

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subscribers to re-join/leave the conversation (providing of course that they check the
hypothetical selection criteria)

The VHE on the terminal level


To support a VHE, an MS must receive (on its USIM card for example) all the data
allowing it to activate the applications associated with the services. Downloading
―new software‖ for example can do this.
It is however necessary to secure the transfer and download standardization
mechanism (to avoid hacking), to secure the environments‘ APIs, to validate all new
software etc...

Figure 129 - The VHE from the terminal point of view

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The VHE on the user’s level

The user himself will be able to access the various services offered by their
providers, if of course they are authorized to do so. They will be informed of services
offered by the network, and will even be able to carry out, from their terminal, the
following operations:
 Subscription to or cancellation of a service,
 Modification of its environment to obtain better QoS,
 Access to a list of services offered by their provider, in the current network,

The VHE on the network level

The network does not need to know the contents of the user‘s VHE in detail. When a
user wants to connect to a service, then the provider emits a request to the network,
indicating the associated VHE.
The network then only needs to know:
 Where the service provider is located,
 How to invoice the service in progress (duration, size of the data, signalling...)
and who to send invoicing data to,
 How to interpret the QoS
 How to transmit the data...

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Figure 130 - The VHE from the user‘s point of view

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4 UMTS Radio Interface

The radio part of the UMTS, the UTRA, is the major change of the UMTS. In fact, it is
based on the innovative technology for a GSM operator.

The UMTS proposes new services that bring concepts of variable flow, of
transmission in package mode and circuit mode, etc. For this reason, a radio
interface specific to the UMTS, the UTRA, and UMTS Terrestrial Radio Access, is in
the process of specification with the 3GPP.

The UTRA proposes two methods for duplex transmission: TDD and FDD. They are
both based on the CDMA, Code Division Multiple Access and over a bandwidth of
5MHZ.

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4.1 The principle of the CDMA/FDMA/TDMA access


methods
For any mobile system, it is necessary to define and optimize the way in which the
radio resources available are allocated between several users i.e., it is necessary to
define the access technology which allows a more effective management of the radio
interface. Within the framework of the UMTS two different types of access technology
have been defined:

 The W-CDMA (Wide Band CDMA),


 The TD-CDMA (Time Division CDMA).

These result from the fusion of three traditional access methods: the FDMA, the
TDMA and the CDMA.
 The FDMA is the most used multiple access method. This technique is the
oldest, and it makes it possible to differentiate between the users by a simple
frequency differentiation. To listen to user N, the receiver considers only the
associated fN frequency. The establishment of this technology is quite simple.
 The TDMA is an access method that is based on the allocation of resources in
time. Each user emits or transmits in an interval of concrete time, whose
periodicity is defined by the duration of the frame. In this case, to listen to user
N, the receiver only has to consider the interval of N time associated with this
user.
 The CDMA is the most recent access method. The CDMA is based on the
distribution by codes. Each user is differentiated from the remainder of the users
by an N code which is allocated to him at the beginning of the communication,
and which is orthogonal with the remainder of the codes related to other users.
In this case, to listen to user N, the receiver has only to multiply the signal
received by the N code associated with this user. This coding makes it possible
to save and optimize the radio resource, while making it possible to code the
speech without gaps.

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CDMA Time
Code

User3 Based on codes, all users obtain traffic


User2
channels at the same time and on the same
frequency band, for example, WCDMA and
User1 CDMA2000
Frequency

TDMA
Time
User 3

User 2 Traffic channels at different points of time are


allocated to different users, for example, DAMPS
User 1
and GSM
Frequency

FDMA
Time

User 1 User 2 User 3 Traffic channels on different frequency bands are


allocated to different users,for example, AMPS and
TACS
Frequency

Figure 131 - Principle of the CDMA/FDMA/TDMA access methods

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Two evolutions of these techniques were developed within UMTS, starting from their
combination for the UMTS.
 The W-CDMA (FDD mode)
 The TD-CDMA (W-CDMA TDD mode)

Each one of these access methods is associated with a technology that manages the
resources related to the emission and the reception of each user. These
technologies, called methods or modes of duplexing, are:
 The FDD, Frequency Division Duplex, which is the mode of duplexing related to
the W-CDMA,
 The TDD, Time Division Duplex, which is the method related to the TD-CDMA.

These new technologies are one of the most innovative parts of the UMTS, since
their implementations are reflected in the majority of the aspects of the UMTS:
 Services,
 New types of handover,
 QoS,
 Dimensioning...

Please, note that the TDD mode is ―3GPP compliant/standardized‖ since March
2001. A new standard named TD-SCDMA (‗its cousin‘) is being standardized in
China but will not be mentioned in this document

4.2 FDD and TDD


Duplex FDD transmission is the most used for technology for duplex transmission. It
is used for the GSM. It makes it possible to differentiate between the communications
in uplink and downlink by the frequency.
This technology thus implies the definition in the spectrum of an uplink and a
downlink band, whose widths are often identical.
In the case of the UMTS these tapes are 1920-1980 MHz and 2110-2170 MHz.

The FDD mode is thus different from the TDD mode due to its method of duplexing
(and the definition of its physical channels).

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In the UMTS Jargon, W-CDMA is currently used to define the FDD W-CDMA mode
and TD-CDMA is used for the TDD mode.
However, W-CDMA TDD sometimes used, relates to the TD-CDMA mode

Name of the
Codes

Temps

Users

fn Frequencies

FDD mode/duplexing principles

Spectral
concentration

Time
Users

Frequencies

f1

TDD mode/duplexing principles

Figure 132 - FDD and TDD

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4.3 The W-CDMA (FDD mode)

There are several ways of classifying CDMA systems. The most current is that which
is based on the modulation method used to obtain a wideband signal. This division
leads to three types of CDMA:

 Direct sequence (DS),


 Frequency Hopping (FH),
 Time Hopping (TH).

One can visualize these differences on the following diagram:


In the DS-CDMA system, the spectrum is spread out by multiplying the signal
carrying information by a PN (pseudo-noise) sequence, which makes it possible to
obtain a wideband signal.
In the case of a spreading out of the spectrum by frequency hopping (FH), the PN
sequence defines the frequency of instantaneous transmission. The bandwidth is
small at any particular moment, but the total bandwidth can be large for a chip rate
period, for example. Frequency Hopping can be either rapid (several hops for a chip)
or slow (several chips transmitted during a hop).

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In the last case (the spectrum spread out by time hopping), a PN sequence defines
the moment of transmission.
A combination of these techniques is possible.

The W-CDMA is defined as a DS-CDMA system, where information is extended over


a bandwidth of 5 MHz or more. Hereafter, we will only discuss the W-CDMA.

It is significant to note that the user emits continuously in W-CDMA FDD, contrary to
the GSM.

Figure 133 - The W-CDMA (FDD mode)

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4.3.1 Summary of the Main Parameters in the


WCDMA Used in the UMTS
WCDMA is a "Wideband Direct-Sequence Code Division Multiple Access" (DS-
CDMA) system, i.e. user information bits are spread over a wide bandwidth by
multiplying the user data with quasi-random bits (called chips) derived from CDMA
spreading codes.
The Chip rate of 3.84 Mcps used leads to a carrier bandwidth of approximately 5
MHz. DS-CDMA systems, with a bandwidth of about 1 MHz (IS-95), are commonly
referred to as narrowband CDMA systems. The ―wider‖ carrier bandwidth of WCDMA
supports high user data rates and also has certain performance benefits, such as
increased multipath diversity.
WCDMA supports highly variable user data rates, in other words the concept of
obtaining Bandwidth on Demand (BoD) is well supported. Each user is allocated
frames of 10 ms duration, during which the user data rate is kept constant. However,
the data capacity amoung the users can change from frame to frame.
In the FDD mode, separate 5 MHz carrier frequencies are used for the uplink and
downlink respectively, whereas in TDD only one 5 MHz is time-shared between
uplink and the downlink. Uplink is the connection from the mobile to the base station,
and downlink is that from the base station to the mobile.
WCDMA supports the operation of asynchronous base stations, so that unlike in the
synchronous IS-95 system, there is no need for a global time reference, such as
GPS. Deployment of indoor and micro base stations is easier when no GPS signal
needs to be received.
The WCDMA air interface has been crafted in such way that advanced CDMA
receiver concepts, such as multi-user detection and smart adaptive antennas, can be
deployed as a system option to increase capacity and/or coverage.
WCDMA is designed to be deployed in conjunction with GSM. Therefore, handovers
between GSM and WCDMA are supported in order to be able to leverage the GSM
coverage for the introduction of WCDMA.

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Figure 134 - Summary of the Main Parameters in the WCDMA Used in the UMTS

The following table summarizes these parameters:

Figure 135 - Main Parameters Summary

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4.3.2 The advantages of WCDMA


 Better coverage than a conventional system in the same spreading conditions
 Needlessness of re-using frequencies

The use of radio resources needs to be optimized in order to ensure a maximum user
density per surface unit. In GSM (TDMA/SFH), thanks to the frequency re-use
mechanism, the concept of a cellular motif allows us, theorectically, to attain
unlimited capacity (thanks to the re-use of the same frequency in different places).
The idea is to use the same frequency as a distant transmitter, without worrying
about interferences (thanks to the dimming of the signal). Note that on the following
diagram (motif of 7 cells) each cell is surrounded by cells of a different number. In
this way, taking cell number 4 as an example, it can be seen that all adjacent cells
are numbered in the following way: 1, 2, 3, 5, 6 and 7.
In UMTS, however, as the access mode is the W-CDMA, the same one frequency
can be used in the whole coverage zone desired, as the users are differentiated
between by the codes. This allows a better spectral efficiency to be obtained.

 The problem of attenuated fading


Fading of the signal can be very significant, but on a weak band. Thus, in the case of
a narrowband signal, this phenomenon becomes very problematic if it appears in the
band of the system used. In the case of a wideband signal, however, fading is
spread over the whole band, so is much weaker.

 RAKE receivers
Thanks to these receivers, the system recovers the multiple signals due to the
multipath. These are then re-combined, which allows the transmitted information to
be obtained with more power.
Each path is treated as a finger of the receiver. The signal is despread thanks to the
correlation with different synchronised versions of the spreading code. A channel
estimator allows the impulsive response of the channel to be obtained, along with the
delay of each path and the fading experienced. Thus, it will be possible to
synchronize the different paths. Two combining methods exist:

 Equal-gain combining, which counterbalances each finger exit.


 Maximal-ratio combining, which choses the weight allowing the Signal over
Noise ratio on the combined exit to be maximised.

Note: there are also RAKE transmitters.

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Figure 136 - The advantages of WCDMA

Figure 137 - Re-combining of Multipaths in W-CDMA

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4.3.3 Spreading & despreading


The concept of spreading is a concept related to the will to transmit the useful signal
on a more significant spectrum band. The interest of spreading is to obtain a better
frequential diversity and less sensitivity to jammers.
In the framework of the UTRA, the spreading used is said to be in a direct sequence,
the multiplication of the data by a code, known as a spreading or channeling code.
The Spreading Factor is equal to the length of the code used.
After spreading, the term used to define the coded bits is the Chip. The relation used
to check the bit rate and the chip rate is:

Bit rate * Length of code = Chip rate

For the UTRA, one of the significant rules is to have a constant chip rate in both
Uplink and Downlink, from 3,84 Mcps.
The user data is here assumed to be a BPSK-modulated bit sequence of rate R, the
user data bits assuming the values of ±1. The spreading operation, in this example,
is the multiplication of each user data bit with a sequence of 8 code bits, called chips.
This can be assumed for the BPSK spreading modulation. It can be seen that the
resulting data spread is at a rate of 8xR and has the same random (pseudo-noise-
like) appearance as the spreading code. In this case, it could be observed that a
spreading factor of 8 was used. This wideband signal would then be transmitted
across a wireless channel to the receiving end.
During despreading the spread user/chip sequence is multiplied, bit duration by bit
duration, with the very same 8 code chips used during the spreading of these bits. As
shown, the original user bit sequence has been recovered perfectly, provided that
there is also a perfect synchronization between the spread user signal and the
(de)spreading code.
The increase of the signalling rate by a factor of 8 corresponds to a widening, by a
factor of 8, of the occupied spectrum of the spread user data signal. Due to this fact,
CDMA systems are more generally called spread spectrum systems. Despreading
restores a bandwidth proportional to R for the signal.
The basic operation of the correlation receiver is described in the diagram. The upper
half of the diagram shows the reception of the desired own signal. As on the
preceding figure, the despreading operation is observed to have a perfectly
synchronized code. Then, the correlation receiver integrates (i.e. sums) the resulting
products (dataxcode) for each user bit.
The lower part shows the effect of the despreading operation when applied to the
CDMA signal of another user whose signal is assumed to have been spread out with
a different spreading code. The result of multiplying the interferring signal with the
own code and integrating the resulting products leads to interferring signal values
lingering around 0.

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The following diagram describes the basic spreading and despreading operations for
a DS-CDMA system:

Figure 138 - Spreading & Despreading in WCDMA

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As can be seen, the amplitude of the own signal increases on average by a factor of
8, relative to that of the user of the other interfering system. This effect termed
"processing gain", is a fundamental aspect of all CDMA systems, and in general of all
spread spectrum systems. Processing gain is what gives CDMA systems the
robustness against self-interference that is necessary in order to re-use the carrier
frequencies available on rather short distances. Let us take the example of real
parameters of the WCDMA: the speech service with a bit rate of 12.2 kbps has a
processing gain of 25dB (=10log10(3.84e6/12.2e3)). After despreading, the signal
power needs to be typically a few decibels above the interference and noise power.
Eb/N0 (density of power per bit / level of noise) is typically 5 dB, and the Signal-to-
Interference Ratio (SIR) necessary is consequently 5 dB less than the processing
gain (= -20 dB). In other words, the signal power can be lower by 20 dB than that of
the thermal noise, and the receiver will still be able to detect the signal. Thanks to the
spreading and despreading operations, the SIR can be weaker in WCDMA than, for
example, in GSM. A good quality speech connection in GSM requires a SIR of 9-12
dB.

Since the wideband signal can be below the thermal noise level, its detection is
difficult if the spreading sequence is not known. For this reason, the spread spectrum
systems have their origin in military applications where the wideband nature of the
signal allows it to be hidden below the omnipresent thermal noise.

It should be noted that for any given bandwidth, the processing gain would be higher
for the lower user data bit rates. Indeed, for a rate of 2 Mbps, the processing gain is
less than 2 (= 3.84 Mcps / 2Mbps=1.92, which corresponds to 2.8 dB) and some of
the robustness of the WCDMA waveform against interference is clearly
compromised.

It is moreover significant to understand that the spreading/despreading operation


does not in itself involve any signal enhancement for the mobile applications. Indeed,
the processing gain comes at the price of an increased transmission bandwidth.
All the WCDMA benefits come rather indirectly by the wideband properties of the
signals when examined at the system level, rather than the level of individual radio
links:

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Figure 139 - CDMA receiver correlation principles

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The processing gain, together with the wideband nature, suggest a frequency reuse
of 1 between different cells, i.e. a frequency is re-used in each cell.

The fact that several users share the same carrier for their communication involves a
diversity of interferences, i.e. the interferences of the various systems are realised,
and this will increase the capacity compared to systems where one has to plan for
the worst-case interference.
However, both the above advantages require the use of an effective Power Control
(PC) and soft handover in order to prevent the signal of one user from blocking
another‘s communication. The PC and the soft handover will be explained hereafter.
With a wideband signal, the different propagation paths of a mobile radio signal could
be treated with better precision than with signals at a lower bandwidth. This results in
a higher diversity content against fading and thus improved performance.

The base stations and WCDMA mobiles primarily use this type of correlation
receiver. However, because of the propagation multipath (and of the possibility of
multiple reception antennas), it is necessary to use multiple correlation receivers, with
the aim of recovering energy coming from all the paths and/or all the antennas. Such
a collection of correlation receivers, called 'fingers', is what constitutes the CDMA
Rake receiver.

Transmission for the UMTS is very different to that of the GSM. The data bits are
initially spread and then modulated in QPSK.

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The improvement of S(f) S(f)

time-domain information
information
information rate means
f0 f f0 f
that the bandwidth of The spectrum before spreading The spectrum after spreading

spectrum-domain
S(f)
S(f)
information
information is spread.
Interference noise
information Interference noise

f0 f0 f
f
The spectrum before despreading The spectrum after despreading

information pulse interference White noise

The Y-coordinate is energy density.


Figure 140 - Spreading and DeSpreading Concept

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4.3.4 Principles of CDMA codes/The Spreading


Factor
CDMA or OVSF (Orthogonal Variable Spreading Factor) codes are used to
differentiate between the channels.
These codes have the characteristic of being a family of orthogonal codes, in the
correlation sense. They are defined by a generating tree.
A root generates 2 branches. The codes carried by these two branches result from
the code of the root. The code of a branch is composed of the code of the root and of
its complementary. This principle thus makes it possible to generate the tree of OVSF
codes used for the UTRA.
The choice of this factor is reflected in two significant points:

 Throughput offered by a physical channel


 Characteristics of the physical channels employed to provide a service to a
user.

In direct sequence spreading, the length of the code is equal to the Spreading Factor,
SF. Moreover, the factor K, which determines the number of bits in the frames of the
DPCH, validates the following relation:

SF=256/2k with k=0...,6

This means that SF (Spreading Factor) can take the values: 4,8,16,128, 256 in FDD
(512 in downlink).
The SF factor determines simultaneously the length of code but also the number of
codes available for a spreading SF.
For the use of the codes, it is necessary to comply with certain rules.
Within the same cell, OVSF codes cannot be used simultaneously because they are
not all orthogonal between themselves.
The code of a branch is strongly related to that of its root, which prevents their
simultaneous use.
When a code is allocated, all the codes resulting from these branches cannot be
used.

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4.3.5 Relation between CDMA codes and Times


Slots
A CDMA code is allocated with each burst of a Timeslot. These codes can be
assigned to one sole user, or various users, according to the capacity needs of the
services employed by each user.

The maximum number of CDMA (k) codes allocated to each slot (which is smaller or
equal to 16) depends:
 On the spreading factors of each code (the length of the codes),
 On the level of interference which exists in the system,
 On the needs of the services transmitted in the Timeslot.

Figure 141 - Relation between CDMA codes and Times Slots

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4.3.6 The allocation of spreading codes


Two types of transmission were defined for TDD mode, which allow the
implementation of the whole range of services from low to high flow:

 The transmission multicode with fixed spreading: all the codes present in the
Timeslot have the same length. The maximum number of codes present in the
Timeslot has the same length. The maximum number of codes per Timeslot
depends on the direction of communication and the number of active users:
In the Uplink direction, if the users are different, they can then support up to 8
codes. However, if a user is allocated in the Timeslot, the maximum number of
codes can reach 10.
In the Downlink direction, the limit is also 10 codes, independently of the number
of active users in the Timeslot.

 The transmission monocode with variable spreading. There are two possibilities
according to the direction of transmission:
In the Uplink direction, a user employs a single code, whose spreading factor can
be adapted according to the flow necessary. The base station can receive several
mobiles of different spreading factors on the same Timeslot, because they will be
differentiated by their code.
In the Downlink direction, a base station can diffuse only one code per Timeslot,
while adapting the spreading factor according to the flow necessary.

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4.3.7 Scrambling and modulation

4.3.7.1 Scrambling
In addition to spreading, explained previously, part of the process in the transmission
is the scrambling, which makes it possible to separate the base stations or the
terminals from each other. Scrambling is used on top of spreading, so that the
bandwidth of the signal remains unchanged. As the chip rate is already achieved in
the spreading, the symbol rate is not affected by the scrambling. The following
diagram shows the relation between spreading and scrambling:

Figure 142 - Scrambling

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4.3.7.2 Processing Gain


Before introducing Processing Gain, it is necessary to describe the operation of
Direct Sequence (DS) CDMA in order to understand why the extension of it,
WCDMA, holds a promise for third generation systems. DS-CDMA is based on the
Spread Spectrum technique, in which the original signal is multiplied (spread) with a
high bit rate binary pseudo-noise (PN) sequence. Since a high bit rate pseudo-noise
sequence is spectrally wide (resembling white noise), the resulting signal after the
multiplication is spectrally wide as well.
At the receiver, the signal is multiplied with the same PN sequence again (de-
spread), at which point the received signal is reduced back to its original bandwidth
and the information is extracted. Therefore, in a multi user environment each user is
assigned a unique PN sequence, with each PN sequence being nearly orthogonal to
one another, so that at the receiver all received signals sharing the same bandwidth
are successfully separated.
The correlator receiver of a CDMA system when receiving signals from two different
users. Signal from user A (at the top part of the figure) is de-spread with its own PN
sequence for a perfect recovery of the original signal. Then, the signal is integrated
over each symbol time frame to get gain equal to the chip rate (in this case equal to
8). The reason for this type of receiver is apparent when looking at the bottom of this
figure where user B‘s signal (that is contained in the same bandwidth as user A) is
multiplied by user A‘s PN sequence and then integrated. The resulting signal is near
noise level and it quite differentiable from the signal received from user A. Therefore,
in the same bandwidth, signals from many users can be resolved allowing for a great
capacity. However, it is important to mention that the more users there are in the
system, the greater the interference, so that at a certain point a limit in the number of
users is reached.
To accomplish the successful separation of the received signals from different
sources, it is also necessary to control the transmitted power of each user quite
carefully. For example, if user A experiences 40 dB loss in its path to the receiver
and user B experiences 80 dB loss, if their transmit powers were the same, user A
would overpower user B at the receiver and B‘s signal would be lost. Therefore, the
base station will instruct user A to lower its power to such a level that it receives
signals from both A and B at approximately the same level and it can successfully
differentiate them.
In addition to providing an interference resistant multi-access environment, CDMA
has two additional benefits that are related to its resilient characteristics in an RF
channel [3]. Firstly, a wide-band signal is minimally affected by narrow-band
interference (which is the most common type of interference in an RF channel). This
is due to the fact that a narrow-band signal impacts a proportionally small part of the
overall wide-band signal (Figure 1). This small loss can be easily overcome with
error correction. Secondly, all signals in an RF channel suffer from multipath fading
[3]. This means that there are multiple paths that a signal takes from the transmitter
to the receiver. The received signals are often different in amplitude and phase. In
the most extreme cases, if a phase difference between the two received signals is an
odd multiple of half a wavelength, signals will add destructively and the resultant
signal will be zero. Therefore, for the successful reception it is necessary to

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distinguish between different multipath signals. Fortunately, CDMA multipath signals


arriving with certain delay related to one another become uncorrelated due to their
PN sequences, so multipath signals can be separated and fading is reduced or
eliminated.

Figure 143 - Processing Gain

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For the developers of the next generation of wireless systems it was important to
recognize the kinds of services future users would require. Even though, it is
impossible to predict all future demands, we are certain that the future user would
need a variety of services like voice, data, streaming video and music, access to
email and web, all in one device on the same wireless link. To accomplish this,
WCDMA is one of the competing multiple access techniques that has greater bit rate,
larger capacity and better spectral efficiency than a second generation system. In
addition, WCDMA can accomplish bandwidth on demand (BoD) and variable quality
of service (QoS). BoD is necessary for efficient web access since majority of
bandwidth is needed on the downlink and little bandwidth is needed on the uplink,
while variable QoS is desired to accommodate, for example, delay sensitive
streaming video on the same link as the loss intolerant data access.

The increased bit rate of 2 Mbps in WCDMA is accomplished by increasing the chip
rate to 3.84 Mcps, which results in a 5 MHz wide channel. This is an increase of four
times in the width of the channel as compared to the narrow-band CDMA.
Fortunately, the wider the channel the more resistant it is to narrow band
interference. The less interference in the system, the greater the possibility for
adding additional users to the system, therefore increasing capacity.

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Further, the power control of CDMA is improved in WCDMA to provide both uplink
and downlink control. In addition, WCDMA provides control more often; CDMA
power controls at 800 Hz, while WCDMA controls at 1500 Hz. These should provide
a reduced interference environment and potential for even further increase in
capacity. Also, as with CDMA, WCDMA‘s wide bandwidth contributes greatly to
combating multipath fading. In the usual suburban and urban environments, the
average delay between multipath signals is between 1 and 2 s and with WCDMA‘s
chip rate of 3.84 Mcps, the time between each chip is 0.27s. This means that the
receiver can easily distinguish between multipath signals coming from the same
source and can combine them in phase, thus avoiding multipath fading all together.

Figure 144 - Spreading

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Bandwidth on Demand is another important feature of WCDMA needed for efficient


bandwidth usage. Firstly, if a user is employing web based applications, the downlink
bandwidth required is much larger than the uplink. Having both links equal would be
very inefficient. Further, a user can have a perfectly clear voice conversation at 12.2
kbps while watching a video at that rate would not be a great experience [1].
Therefore, it is obvious that BoD is necessary for an acceptable service. The way
that WCDMA accomplishes this task is conceptually simple. Each user is assigned a
time frame of 10 ms during which the bit rate is constant. At each following frame,
the user can change the bit rate, thus accomplishing the variability and getting
bandwidth on demand. Along the same lines, each of the applications can have a
difference Quality of Service necessary for successful usage. Therefore, WCDMA,
like other third generation systems, differentiates between four different QoS classes;
conversational, streaming, interacting and background [1]. The conversational class
is strictly delay sensitive (voice, video telephony, video games), i.e. if the delay is not
preserved the quality is unacceptable. The streaming class is delay sensitive, but not
stringent (streaming multimedia). The interacting class is loss intolerant and to the
lesser degree delay sensitive (web browsing). The background class is loss
intolerant and is not delay sensitive (background downloads). The ability to assign
different classes of service required for different applications will ensure that
appropriate level of service is delivered, which is a great step forward for a third
generation system.

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Figure 145 - Detecting Own Signal Correlator

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4.3.7.3 Modulation

Uplink Modulation

In the uplink direction, two criteria must be taken into account in the definition of the
modulation: it must be conceived so that the effectiveness of the final amplifier is
maximized and audible interference is minimized. Discontinuous uplink transmission
can indeed cause audible interference for audio equipment close to the terminal
(hearing aids...).
This is a completely separate issue from the interference in the air interface. The
audible interference is only a nuisance effect for the user and does not affect network
performance such as its capacity. With the GSM, we are familiar with the occasional
audible interference with audio equipment that is not properly protected.
The interference from GSM has a frequency of 217 Hz, which is determined by the
GSM frame frequency, and thus falls into the band that can be heard by the human
ear. With a CDMA system, the same issues arise when discontinuous uplink
transmission is used, for example with a speech service. During the silent periods, no
information bits need to be transmitted, only the information for link maintenance
purposes, such as power control with a 1.5 kHz command rate. With such a rate, the
transmission of the pilot and the power control symbols, with time multiplexing in the
uplink direction, would cause audible interference in the middle of the telephony voice
frequency band.
For this reason, the two dedicated physical channels in uplink are not time
multiplexed, and an I-Q (QPSK) modulation is implemented, followed by scrambling.
The continuous transmission achieved with this modulation is described on the
following diagram:

Figure 146 - Parallel transmission of DPDCH and DPCCH when the data is absent / present (DTX)

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From now on, when the pilot and the power control signal are maintained on a
distinct continuous channel, no transmission impulse occurs. An impulse only
appears when the DPDCH data channel is switched, but such commutations very
seldom occur. The level of interference for the other users remains identical to that of
the time multiplexing.

The UTRA will have to face challenges concerning the effectiveness of the
amplification compared to the GSM. GMSK (Gaussian Minimum Keying Shift)
modulation of the GSM is at a constant envelope and is optimized for amplification.
Moreover, as a narrowband based system, the GSM signal can be spread more
widely in the frequential field, which makes it possible to use a less linear amplifier
with a better conversion gain. However, the WCDMA uses a fast PC in uplink, which
reduces the transmission power required in uplink.
The signal constellation of the I-Q multiplexing before scrambling is the following (G
is the relative power):

Figure 147 - Constellation I-Q before scrambling

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Downlink Modulation

In downlink, a normal QPSK modulation was selected, because time multiplexing is


allowed since there is no discontinuous transmission (no interference problems).
The QPSK is a modulation in 4 states, which makes it possible to code a symbol on
two bits. Its characteristics are to have a spectral effectiveness higher than the
GMSK, however it is more sensitive to jammings and requires the implementation of
linear amplifiers.

In FDD Uplink, the DPDCH and DPCCH channels are each transmitted on one
branch:
 DPDCH on I,
 DPCCH on Q.

In Downlink, the DPCCH and DPCCH channels are time multiplexed, then
transmitted together on I and Q after demultiplexing:
 DPDCH/DPCCH on I and Q.

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4.3.8 Logical Channels


The logical channels are:

 Broadcast Control Channel (BCCH) which supports the system and specific
information on the cells,
 Paging Control Channel (PCH) which is used for the mobile messages to the
paging areas,
 Dedicated Control Channel (DCCH), which ensures a bidirectional point-to-point
connection of information between the UE and the network,
 Common Control Channel (CCCH) which ensures a bidirectional connection
between the network and several UEs,
 Dedicated Traffic Channel (DTCH) which ensures a dedicated point-to-point
connection with an UE,
 Common Traffic Channel (CTCH) which ensures a one-way point to multipoint
connection for the transfer of network information to several UEs.

Figure 148 - Mapping between logical channels and transport channels (UL and DL)

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4.3.9 Transport Channels


The transport channels define how and with which type of characteristics the data will
be transmitted by the physical channels. They are divided into two categories:
dedicated channels and common channels, the latter being able to be shared
between several users. These channels are defined by their transmission
characteristics:

4.3.9.1 Dedicated/common
 Uplink/downlink,
 Use of power control, or not,
 Emission in the whole cell or a part,
 Quality (bit error rate, Frame Erasure Rate, transmission delay),
 Authorized rates.

Dedicated Transport Channels

There is only one type of dedicated channel in the R99 release: the DCH (Dedicated
CHannel). It transports all information coming from the higher layers, for a given
user, including both the data for the service being used (speech frames for example),
and the control information for the higher layers (requests for handover or
measurement reports for example). The contents of the information transported are
not visible from the physical layer. This channel supports the soft handover.
Among its characteristics we find: rapid power control, rapid rate change (frame by
frame), the possibility of transmission on part of the cell or on the whole cell with an
adaptive antenna system…….
In the 2000 release another dedicated channel will appear in FDD: the FAUSCH
(Fast Uplink Signalling CHannel). It will transport control information coming from a
terminal (UE). It will be used to allocate the dedicated channels (in association with
the FACH).

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Figure 149 - Transport Channels

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 The RACH (Random Access CHannel)

This is an uplink transport channel used to transport information from the terminal,
such as, for example, a request to establish a connection. It can also be used to send
small quantities of package data from the terminal to the network. In order to function
correctly, the RACH has to be able to be tapped from any place within the cell, which
means that the real flow throughput must be weak, at least for the initial access to the
system and other control procedures.
This channel is essential in the case of a basic operation on the network level

 The CPCH (Common Packet CHannel)

This common uplink channel is an extension of the RACH to transport user data in
packet mode. The main differences to the RACH are the use of rapid power control,
a mechanism for the detection of collisions based on the physical layer and a
procedure of surveillance of the status of the CPCH.
This is associated with a dedicated downlink channel, which supplies power control
and control commands for the uplink CPCH.
Its use is optional and can be decided upon by the network.

 The DSCH (Downlink Shared CHannel)

This is a transport channel, which allows the transportation of user data and/or
dedicated control information. It can be shared amongst several users. In numerous
ways, it ressembles the FACH, but the DSCH supports the use of rapid power
control, as well as variable flow. It does not need to be received in any point of the
cell (but it can, however, be transmitted on the whole cell) and can use different
methods of transmit diversity, which are used with the associated DCH in downlink.
The DSCH is associated with one (the most frequent) or several DCH.
Its use is optional and can be decided upon by the network.

Contrary to the logical channels, they are not characterized by their contents
(signalling, traffic). The following table describes the various types of channels valid
for the TDD and the FDD.

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Transport channel Type and direction Used for

DCH (Dedicated channel) Dedicated; uplink User or control information to a UE


and downlink (entire cell or part of cell (lobe-
forming))
BCH (Broadcast channel) Common; downlink Broadcast system and cell specific
information
FACH (Forward Access Common; downlink Control information when system knows
channel) UE location or short user packets to
a UE
PCH (Paging channel) Common; downlink Control information to UEs when good
sleep mode properties are needed,
e.g. idle mode operation
RACH (Random Acces Common; uplink Control information or short user packets
channel) from an UE
DSCH (Downlink shared Common; downlink Carries dedicated user data and control
channel) information using a shared channel

DSCH control channel Common; downlink Carries control information when the
DSCH is not associated with DCH

Figure 150 - Various types of transport channels valid for the TDD and the FDD

Figure 151 - Relation between the transport channels and the physical channels

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5 Radio Algorithms in UMTS

The development in 3GPP was rapid following its set up in December 1998. The first
3G set of specifications were completed and approved in early 2000 (known as
Release 99). The next set emerged by early 2001 (known as Release 4) and
subsequent specification releases have followed that have added further capabilities
and features to UMTS. Currently (end 2008), work is starting on Release 9. The first
UMTS networks were deployed in 2001 (the main one in Japan) with many more
following soon after. Some further improvements to the GSM standard have also
been included in these releases.

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5.1 Power Control


Power control is perhaps the most significant aspect of the WCDMA, in particular on
the uplink. Without it, one single overly powerful mobile could block an entire cell.
The following diagram describes the problem and its solution in the form of closed
loop transmission power control.
Mobile stations MS1 and MS2 operate at the same frequency, separable at the base
station only by their respective spreading codes. It is possible for the MS1 at the
edge of the cell to suffer from a loss, due to the 70 dB path, more than the MS2
which is close to the base station BS. If there were no mechanisms allowing the
power of the MS1 and the MS2 to be controlled on the same level as the base
station, the MS2 could cover the MS1 without any problems and thus block most of
the cell. The optimal strategy to maximize capacity is to always equalize the power
received, by bits, of all the mobiles.
If one can design mechanisms of open loop power control which make a rough
estimate of the loss due to the path, by means of a signal of downlink broadcasting,
such a method would be too vague in this case. The first reason for this is that fast
fading is primarily correlated between the uplink and the downlink, because of a
significant separation in frequency between the uplink and the downlink of the FDD
mode of the WCDMA. Open loop power control is, nevertheless, used in WCDMA,
but only to provide a rough initial installation of the mobile station, when the mobile is
switched on.
In closed loop power control in uplink, the base station carries out frequent estimates
of the received SIR and compares it with the SIR target. If the measured SIR is
higher than the SIR target, the base station will command the mobile to decrease its
power; if it is too low, it will command the mobile to increase its power. This cycle of
measurement-command-reaction is carried out at a frequency of 1500 times a
second (1.5 kHz) for each mobile and prevents any imbalance among the uplink
signals received at the base station.

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Figure 152 - Closed loop power control in CDMA

The same closed loop power control is implemented in downlink, although the
motivation is different: on the downlink there is no near-far problem. All the signals
inside a cell originate from one base station. It is, however, desirable to provide a
supplement of power to the mobiles within the limit of the cell, since they undergo the
interferences of other cells.

This is how the closed loop power control in uplink acts on a fading channel at low
speed: the power control gives the mobile the command to use a transmitted power
proportional to the opposite of the received power (SIR). Provided that the mobile has
a sufficient margin to increase the power, there will be very little fading left.

Although this elimination of fading is extremely desirable from the receiver‘s point of
view, the average transmitted power increases at the end of the transmission. This
means that the mobile undergoes significant fading, i.e. the use of a strong
transmission power will cause increased interference to the other cells.

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It is also necessary to mention a related control loop: the outer loop power control.
The Outer loop power control adjusts the SIR target at the base station, according to
the needs of the radio link, and aims to maintain constant quality, commonly defined
as a certain binary target error rate (bit error rate: BER) or error rate per frame (frame
error rate: FER). Why should there be a need to change the SIR target? The
necessary SIR for, for example, an FER of 1% depends on the speed of the mobile
and the multipath profile. If the worst case SIR target were now to be set, i.e. for very
high speed mobiles, an enormous amount of capacity would be lost for the same
connections at low speeds. Thus, the best strategy is to let the SIR target float
around a minimal value, which only just corresponds to the quality necessary. The
SIR target setpoint changes over the course of time, as can be seen on the graph of
the preceding figure, when the speed and the environment of propagation change.

Figure 153 - Outer loop power control

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Outer loop control is implemented in the following way: the base station marks each
frame of uplink user data with an indicator of frame reliability. If the frame quality
indicator announces to the Radio Network Controller (RNC) that the quality of
transmission is decreasing, the RNC will, in return, command the base station to
increase the SIR target. The reason for outer loop control being carried out in the
RNC is that it must be possible for this function to be carried out after a soft
handover.

Figure 154 - Overview of the closed loop power control (UL&DL) with RNC supervision (Outer PC)

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5.2 Details of the connection to the UMTS network


When a mobile has just been switched on, it starts by searching for the network. On
the spectrum accessible to it, it looks for the primary SCH. As the mobile is likely to
receive several of them, it chooses the one that it is receiving the clearest, and this
SCH becomes the principal synchronization channel.
Initially, the mobile uses the primary SCH to acquire synchronization on the layer of
the slots. Indeed, as the primary code of the primary SCH is identical in each slot the
mobile carries out the correlation between the primary synchronization code that it
knows and the signal that it receives. When the product of correlation on a code or
several consecutive codes is sufficient, the mobile considers that it has acquired
synchronization. The major constraint of this detection is the probability of false
detection.

Then, by the secondary code of the secondary SCH, the mobile determines which
group of scrambling codes the cell belongs to. This operation makes it possible to
pass from 512 possible scrambling codes to 16. By correlating with the group‘s
scrambling codes on the BCCH channel, the mobile determines the cell‘s exact
scrambling code.

5.2.1 Random Access


Random access makes it possible for a mobile to request access to the radio
network. This procedure has several stages, first of which is the synchronization of
the mobile to the base station. In order to do this, the mobile takes the following
steps:

 Reading of the BCCH, including detection:


Of OVCF codes and scrambling of the preambles used in the cell,
Of the available signatures,
Of the available access slots,
Of the available spreading factors for the message part,
Of the interference level on the base station layer,

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 The choice of an OVSF code and a scrambling code for the preamble,
The choice of the spreading factor for the message part,
The power control for the RACH channel,
The random choice of an access slot as well as a signature,
The emission of an access burst,

After the emission of this first access burst, the mobile awaits an acknowledgement
of reception from the base station. If, after a determined lapse of time, the mobile
does not receive any acknowledgement of reception, it sends another access burst.
Once the mobile receives a corresponding acknowledgement of reception, the
access procedure finishes and the base station can send the necessary information
to the mobile via the FACH channel.

Power

frequency

4.4-5.0 MHz time

Multiplexed Variable rate users 10 ms frame

Figure 155 - Random Access

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5.3 Handover Principles in the UMTS


In the vocabulary of the UMTS, a handover is the procedure of establishment and
release of one or more units of the radio resources, conceived to maintain radio
connection whilst crossing the border of a cell or a sector. The handover can also be
employed to optimize the traffic load or the quality of the communications in the
network.
A handover can be carried out without being perceived (which is ideal), but this
depends on the serviceable time between the moment when the mobile terminal
becomes accessible by the new cell and the moment when it becomes inaccessible
by the old cell.
Thus, if this time is sufficiently significant, then the transmission with the old cell can
be slackened without any problem. It is assumed that the network has enough time to
commutate from the old to the new cell, without data loss.

If a mobile terminal disappears abruptly from the coverage zone of the old cell, the
data in transit in the previous physical connection can be:
 Either placed in a buffer by the old cell and transferred to the new one. The
transmission can start again from a precise point.
 Or lost. It will have to be retransmitted thereafter. Non real-time services are
referred to here (differed times).

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5.3.1 Handover detection


Supervision of the quality of the link

The following are the stages to be followed before starting a handover execution
procedure:
1. Measurements,
11. Processing of measurements / monitoring of quality,
12. Handover mecanism / release, or not, decision (according to the results of the
associated algorithms, either the execution of a handover, or the execution of a
procedure of Macro diversity is envisaged),
13. Choice of carrier for the handover,
14. 5. Handover execution (according to signalling protocol).
• Soft Handover Measurement and Decision

Eb / N0 t t t

Cell 1

T_DROP

T_DROP
T_ADD

Cell 2

Cell 3

time

Cell 1 Add Cell 2 Drop Cell 1 Drop Cell 3


Connected Add Cell 3

Figure 156 - Handover detection

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5.3.2 Reasons for handover failure


There are several reasons for handover failures
 No channel available in the cell selected.
 Handover refused by the network, either due to a lack of resources, or because
the mobile station has exceeded the number of handovers that it has the right to
carry out during a certain period.
 The execution of handover, after its initialization, is too long for the network.
 Problem encountered with the target link during handover execution.
 Blocking of resources (in the case of systems using the DCA (observed channel
quality), DECT for example).

5.3.3 Performance Indicators


Link quality indicators:
 Average in downlink of Ec/Io for a given load,
 Average in uplink of Ec/Io for a given load.

Indicators of good resource allocation:


 An expected number of the cells taking part in the active set (a measurement of
the use of the system resources),
 An expected number of changes in the active set (a measurement of the
network load)

5.3.4 Teletraffic and measurement of performance


Beyond the parameters already mentioned, which are above all related to soft
handover, the performance metrics for evaluating handover algorithms are, in
general:
 Carried traffic: Number of expected channels which occupy each cell,
 New call blocking probability: probability of a new call being blocked,
 Handover blocking probability: probability of a handover being blocked,
 Handover probability,

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 Call dropping probability: probability of a call being cut-off because of handover


failure; a derivative of the handover blocking probability and handover
probability,
 Probability of an unnecessary handover,
 Rate of handover,
 Delay: Distance covered by the mobile between the moment when the
handover must be carried out and the moment of execution.

Network
Optimization Network
Planning Management
Operator’s Operator’s
Marketing
Optimization
Department Planning
Department Management Marketing

Network Radio . End


Customer
Customer
PM Tool
Operation PM Tool
Commander CareCare
Center

Radio
NEMS
Commander

RNC RNC

Drive Tests Subscriber

Figure 157 - Teletraffic and measurement of performance

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5.3.5 Various types of handover (UMTS)


From the very start of the specifications, the interworking of the UMTS and the GSM
into account was recommended in order to ensure the perennially of strongly
deployed 2G systems. It is thus necessary to consider the possibility of carrying out
intra UMTS handovers and handovers between UMTS and GSM.
In this way, two types of handover are envisaged:
 UTRA/UTRA Handover,
 UTRA/GSM Handover.

Handovers envisaged

For the UTRA, several types of handover exist:

 The Soft Handover (for FDD mode, discussed in the rest of the paragraph),
 Softer Handover (sector hopping inside the same node),
 The Hard Handover (handover used in GSM/GPRS, or for TDD mode).

Note: Alternatives derived from the latter were founded: the Soft-Softer, the Softer-
Soft...

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In general, in mobile communications, the environment‘s characteristics create


conditions for handover execution. IV.5.3.5.2 Hard handover (« GSM like »)
In this case, the physical transmission connections are simply commutated from one
cell to another, which implies a, short, interruption of the connection. At the time of
this interruption, data can be lost, which is where the need to find special techniques,
which make it possible to reduce these losses, comes in.
One technique is to make the network build the "new path" in advance, so that the
interruption is as short as possible. Commutation to the new path and the re-routing
of information are then carried out simultaneously.
Strict conditions of synchronization are necessary for the hard handover to satisfy the
quality of service (QoS) required by the timing aspects, in particular on voice quality
(temporary disturbance). For the data services without time constraints, hard
handover can be applied in combination with retransmissions.
The following diagram shows the difference between the hard handover used in GSM
(dotted lines) and the soft handover (full lines).

Figure 158 - Comparison of the GSM and the UMTS in terms of Macrodiversity

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Softer handover

During a softer handover, the mobile station is in the recovery zone of two adjacent
sectors of the same base station. Communications between the mobile and the base
station take place competitively on two channels of the air interface, for each sector.
This requires the use of two distinct codes in the downlink direction, so that the
mobile can distinguish the signals. The two signals are received by the mobile by
means of a processing Rake, very similar to multipath processing, except for the fact
that the fingers must generate the respective codes of each sector for the suitable
despreading operation.
In the uplink direction a similar process takes place at the base station: the mobile‘s
channel code is received in each sector then routed to the same Rake receiver in a
basic band. During the softer handover only one power control loop is active per
connection. The softer handover occurs in 5 to 15% of connections.

Figure 159 - Soft handover

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Advantages of soft handover

 Contribution to the power control necessary for the CDMA system,


 Elimination of the ―ping pong‖ effect noted in hard handover, which implies:
A reduction in the network load, thanks to the reduction in handover signalling,
The user does not notice the "clicks" which accompany the short interruption in
voice transmission (hard handover).

 The hysteresis margin is not used (whereas it is in the case of hard handover).
Thus, the delay noted with hard handover is decreased and interference,
associated with handovers with hysteresis, is avoided,
 There are less time constraints on the network. There can be larger average
standby times before the allocation of a new target cell channel. Thus the
probability of blocking or lost calls is reduced.

Disadvantages of soft handover

 Utilization of additional radio resources.


 Soft handover is more complex.
 Interference on the downlinks increases during the execution of soft handover
(effect on other users).

The principle of Soft-handover establishes a compromise between two aspects


related to the dimensions of the cells:
 It makes it possible to increase the size of the initial cell because, by combining
two degraded connections, it is able to generate a quality link for the mobile,
 It implies a greater consumption of the capacity of the radio resources available
in each cell involved in the soft-handover procedure, than what would be
necessary for a normal communication.

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5.4 Handover from UTRAN to GSM

In the current specification, the possibility of carrying out handovers between the
UMTS and the GSM is taken into account.
In order to do this it is necessary for the mobile to carry out some measurements on
the GSM band. To allow the mobile to listen to the broadcast channel (BCCH
channel) from the neighboring GSM network, the transmission in the downlink
direction is interrupted for some ms.. This interruption characterizes the slotted mode
of FDD mode (for the TDD mode, it is not necessary due to the discontinuous nature
of the transmission).
In compressed mode, a different format is used for the slots. There are two
possibilities: A and B. The second aids the compressed mode by a reduction of the
Spreading Factor, whereas the first is used for all other methods allowing
transmission time to be reduced.
With reference to transmit diversity, the mode can be used in an open loop (STTD) or
in a closed loop. In the first case, the number of bits for the pilot can take several
values:
 2: the pilot bits are coded by the STTD method, with the last two bits of the
second data field (Data2) of the slot.
 4: the first two pilot bits are coded by the STTD method, with the last two of the
pilot.
 8, 16: the pilot bits are grouped in twos (the first two, then the next….). Each
group forms a symbol. In the first case, there are 4 symbols and in the second
there are 8. The pair symbols are coded with the odd symbols by the STTD
method. These are orthogonal between themselves.

In the second case, the pilot bits are transmitted either following mode 1 (two
different types of pilot bits are used by both antennae), or following mode 2 (the same
pilot bits are transferred by both antennae).

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CS Spreading Factor Reduction (SF/2)

Transmission Transmission Gap (TG) for inter-frequency measurements


Time Interval (TTI)

PS Higher Layer Scheduling (HLS)

Figure 160 - Principle of slotted mode/compressed mode

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5.5 Handover from UMTS to GSM


In the event of an inter-system environment i.e. in the vicinity of GSM cells and cells
of the UTRAN, the UTRAN transmits a list of close GSM cells to the mobile (it is
supposed that the mobile is dual-mode UMTS/GSM). Based on measurements made
by this mobile, the RNC can decide to carry out a handover to a GSM cell.
Once this decision is made, the RNC sends the signal from the target cell, in a
Hard_handover_Required message, to the MSC. The MSC, knowing the complete
configuration of the cells dependent on each BSC connected to it, can transfer, as
with the GSM, the request for handover to the target BSC. This BSC creates a new
channel on the target cell and prepares a handover_Command message, which is
transfered to the UE, in a seamless way, through the RNC. Once the handover
execution is finished, successfully, the resources dependent on the RNC source are
released.

GSM to UMTS Handover

A handover of the GSM system to the UMTS can be necessary for radio coverage
reasons and service reasons (this last point is not yet clarified).
In an inter-system environment, the BSC diffuses a list of neighboring UMTS cells in
the System_Information message. The dual-mode UMTS/GSM mobile thus carries
out measurements on these UMTS cells.
Based on these measurements, the BSC decides whether or not to carry out a
handover to a UMTS cell. In this case the BSC sends a handover_Required message
with a list of cells to the MSC. The MSC cannot determine the site of the required
UMTS cells, by the signalling of the identity of the cells alone. The BSC source must
at least identify a UMTS cell by its RNC identifier and its cell identifier, so that the
MSC knows which RNC to send the Hard_handover_Request message to. Upon
receiving this message, the RNC carries out the activation of a channel on the
required cell and prepares the handover_Command, which is sent in a seamless way
to the mobile by the BSC. After the (successful) handover execution, the resources
on the BSC source are released.

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HO quality measure [dB] Replace hysteresis

Time
Replace A Replace C Replace A
by C by A by B

Figure 161 - Handover

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6 Call Sequences

In the next diagrams will be presented the following sequences:

 Mobile Originated Call (MOC)


 Mobile Terminated Call (MTC)
 Activation of PDP Context
 Location Area (LA) Update
 Routing Area (RA) Update

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6.1 MOC (Mobile Originated Call)


At the start the UE is in RRC Idle mode. No UE location information is stored in
UTRAN. Only the CN (SGSN & MSC Server) contains UE location information. Now
a speech call is initiated by the UE:
 An RRC Connection is established (see RRC Connection Establishment). The
UE changes from RRC Idle to RRC Connected mode.
 NAS Signaling Connection Establishment (see RUP): The RRC & RANAP
procedures ―Initial DT‖ and ―Initial UE message‖ are transmitted in the UL from
UE via RNC to the MSC Server to establish a NAS signaling connection.
 Security Functions (see RUP): Authentication is carried out between the UE
and MSC Server using the RANAP and RRC ―Direct Transfer‖ procedures.
Furthermore, Ciphering and Integrity Check is started using the RANAP
procedures ―Security Mode Command‖ and ―Security Mode Complete‖ and the
RRC procedures ―Cipher Mode Command‖ and ―Cipher Mode Complete‖.
 The Setup message is transparently transmitted from the MSC Server via S-
RNC to the UE using the RANAP / RRC procedures ―DT‖ respectively ―DL
DT‖.
 The MSC server checks the Authorization of the user to perform the requested
service and acknowledges the further proceeding of the requested service to
the UE. Here the RANAP / RRC messages "DT" and "DL DT" are used to
transmit the "Call Proceeding message".
 The MSC server commands the MGW to prepare a bearer towards the S-
RNC. The CBC procedures "ADD.request" and "Add.response" are
exchanged via Mc interface between MSC server and MGW.
 The MSC Server commands the S-RNC to prepare the RAB resources in
UTRAN and towards CN and the Radio bearer resources on the air interface
towards the UE using the RANAP command "RAB Assignment Request". RAB
Assignment Request contains all data necessary to prepare the bearer
towards the MGW.

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 RAB Establishment: The S-RNC prepares the RAB using different NBAB,
RRC, ALCAP and RANAP procedures.
 Part of the RAB Establishment is the synchronization of the Iu(CS) between
the S-RNC and MGW of Iu(CS) using the ALCAP procedures "Establishment
Request" and "Establishment Confirm" .
 The S-RNC informs the MSC server about the RAB Establishment via RANAP
procedure "RAB Assignment Response".
 The MSC Server commands the MGW via Mc interface to prepare a Bearer
towards the next MGW. MSC Server and MGW are exchanging the CBC
procedures "ADD.request" and "ADD.reply".
 Now the MSC Server is able to contact the next MSC Server via Nc interface
sending the BICC procedure "Initial Address Message IAM". This message
contains all necessary information about the bearer to be prepared.
 This triggers the next MSC Server to start the Bearer setup in the backward
direction. It commands the next MGW to prepare a Bearer towards the
initial/serving MGW. The CBC procedures "ADD.request" and "ADD.reply" are
exchanged via Mc interface between MSC Server and MGW.
 The next MGW is establishing / synchronizing the direct link towards the
initial/serving MGW via Nb interface. Therefore, the MGWs are using the
AAL2L3 / ALCAP procedures "Establishment Request" and "Establishment
Confirm". Now the second bearer segment is ready.
 This process has to be continued until End-to-End the Bearer is prepared.
 When the complete transport path is established, the BICC procedure
"Address Complete Message" is sent via Nc interface towards the serving
MSC Server.
 The ACM message is converted into the ALERTING message and transmitted
from the MSC Server via S-RNC to the UE using the RANAP / RRC
procedures "DT" and "DL DT".
 When the call is answered by the B-subscriber the BICC procedure Answer
Message ANM is transmitted form MSC Server to MSC Server via Nc
interface.

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Mobile Originated Call (MOC)


UE NodeB RNC CN

Service Request
Service Request

Authentication Request
Authentication Request

Authentication Response
Authentication Response

Security Mode Command


Security Mode Command

Security Mode Complete


Security Mode Complete

Setup Message
Setup Message

Call Proceeding
Call Proceeding

Continues on next Page

Figure 162 - Mobile Originated Call 1

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Mobile Originated Call (MOC) (cont.)


UE NodeB RNC CN
RAB Assignment Request
Radio Link Reconfig. Prepare

Radio Link Reconfig. Ready

Radio Link Reconfig. Commit

Radio Bearer Setup

Radio Bearer Setup Complete


RAB Assignment Response

Alerting
Alerting
Connect
Connect

Connect Acknowledge
Connect Acknowledge

Figure 163 - Mobile Originated Call 2

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6.2 MTC (Mobile Terminated call)


At the start the UE is in RRC Idle mode. No UE location information is stored in
UTRAN. Only the CN contains UE location information. The MSC has been informed
to set-up a call to the UE.
 ―Paging‖: The RANAP procedure is sent from MSC to RNC for the UE
terminating service request. It contains e.g. the CN Domain Indicator, the IMSI
(for paging co-ordination), TMSI, Paging Area (LAI) and Paging Cause
(transparently transferred to the UE). If the Paging Area is not included, the
UE is paged in the whole RNC area.
 ―Paging‖: The RRC procedure is broadcast in all Paging Area cells to request
the UE to get into contact with the network.
 An RRC Connection is established (see RRC Connection Establishment). The
UE changes from RRC Idle to RRC Connected mode.
 ―Initial DT‖ & ―Initial UE message‖: The RRC & RANAP procedures are
transmitted in the UL to establish a NAS signaling connection as response on
the RANAP Paging.
 Authentication is carried out using RANAP and RRC ―Direct Transfer‖
procedures.
 Ciphering of user data and control information as well as integrity check is
started using the RANAP procedures ―Security Mode Command‖ and ―Security
Mode Complete‖ and RRC procedures ―Cipher Mode Command‖ and ―Cipher
Mode Complete‖.
 ―DT‖ & ―DL DT‖: The Setup information is transparently transmitted from MSC
to UE.
 ―RAB Assignment Request‖: The CN initiates the establishment with this
RANAP message, including the RAB parameters.
 ―RL Reconfiguration Prepare‖: The S-RNC prepares the Node B to reserve
necessary resources for the new configuration of the RLs according to the
parameters given in this NBAP message. The message contains the TFS &
TFCS, Codes & TS (TDD only).
 18) ―RL Reconfiguration Ready‖: The Node B informs the S-RNC with this
NBAP message that it has allocated the necessary resources and that it is
ready for the data transmission.
 The Iub data bearer is set up using the ALCAP protocol and synchronizes S-
RNC and Node B.
 ―RL Reconfiguration Commit‖: The Node B is ordered to switch the new
configuration for the RLs previously prepared.
 ―Radio Bearer Setup Complete‖: The UE acknowledges the Radio Bearer
Setup information with this RRC procedure to the S-RNC.

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 ―RAB Assignment Response‖: The S-RNC now acknowledges topic 16). It


indicates the successful establishment of the requested RAB or indicated the
RAB has been queued. For a queued RAB UTRAN indicates the outcome of
the queuing individually in a subsequent ―RAB Assignment Response‖
message. (Remark: ―RAB Assignment Request is an EP Class 3 message).
 ―UL DT‖ & ―DT‖: RRC and RANAP DT procedures are used to transmit the
NAS message ―Alert‖ from UE to MSC. It indicates that the UMTS phone is
ringing.
 ―UL DT‖ & ―DT‖: RRC and RANAP DT procedures are used to transmit the
NAS message ―Connect‖ from UE to MSC. It indicates that the UE is ready
now for user data transmission.
 ―DT‖ & ― DL DT‖: RANAP and RRC DT procedures are used to transmit the
NAS message ―Connect Ack‖ from MSC to UE. It acknowledges the reception
of the connect message & indicates, that from now on user data are
exchanged.
Mobile Terminated Call (MTC)
UE NodeB RNC CN

Paging
Paging Type 1 [PCCH/PCH/S-CCPCH]

PRACH: Preamble

AICH

Connection Request [CCCH/RACH/PRACH]

Radio Link Setup

Radio Link Setup Response

Connection Setup [S-CCPCH/FACH/CCCH]

Synch Indication

Connection Setup Complete [DCCH/DCH1/UL DPDCH

Initial Direct Transfer [DCCH/DCH1/UL DPDCH


Initial UE Message
NAS PROCEDURES
Continues on next Page

Figure 164 - Mobile Terminated Call 1

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Mobile Terminated Call (MTC) (cont.)


UE NodeB RNC CN

RAB Assignment Request


RL Reconfig. Prepare

RL Reconfig. Ready

RL Reconfig. Commit

Radio Bearer Setup [DCCH/DCH1/DPDCH

Radio Bearer Setup Complete [DCCH/DCH1/DPDCH

RAB Asssignment Response

Connection Established

Figure 165 - Mobile Terminated Call 2

6.3 PDP Context Activation


A Packet Data Protocol (PDP) context offers a packet data connection over which the
UE and the network can exchange IP packets. Usage of these packet data
connections is restricted to specific services. These services can be accessed via so-
called access points.
Packet Data Protocol Context is one of the most important concepts for the UMTS
Packet Data Architecture.
The PDP Context has a record of parameters, which consists of all the required
information for establishing an end-to-end connection:
 PDP Type
 PDP address type
 QoS profile request (QoS parameters requested by user)
 QoS profile negotiated (QoS parameters negotiated by network)
 Authentication type (PAP or CHAP)
 DNS type (Dynamic DNS or Static DNS)
The PDP Context is mainly designed for two purposes for the terminal.

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 Firstly PDP Context is designed to allocate a Packet Data Protocol (PDP)


address, either IP version 4 or IP version 6 type of address, to the mobile
terminal.
 Secondly it is used to make a logical connection with QoS profiles, the set of
QoS attributes negotiated for and utilized by one PDP context, through the
UMTS network.
PDP Context Activation
UE RNC SGSN GGSN

[DCH] Activate PDP Context Request

Security procedures

RAB Assignment Request

RAB Setup

RAB Assignment Complete


Create PDP Context Request

Create PDP Context Response

[DCH] Activate PDP Context Accept

Figure 166 - PDP Context Activation

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6.4 Location Area Update


A GSM or UMTS network, like all cellular networks, is a radio network of individual
cells, known as base stations. Each base station covers a small geographical area
which is part of a uniquely identified location area. By integrating the coverage of
each of these base stations, a cellular network provides a radio coverage over a very
much wider area. A group of base stations is called a location area, or a routing area.
The location update procedure allows a mobile device to inform the cellular network,
whenever it moves from one location area to the next. Mobiles are responsible for
detecting location area codes. When a mobile finds that the location area code is
different from its last update, it performs another update by sending to the network, a
location update request, together with its previous location, and its Temporary Mobile
Subscriber Identity (TMSI).
There are several reasons why a mobile may provide updated location information to
the network. Whenever a mobile is switched on or off, the network may require it to
perform an IMSI attach or IMSI detach location update procedure. Also, each mobile
is required to regularly report its location at a set time interval using a periodic
location update procedure. Whenever a mobile moves from one location area to the
next while not on a call, a random location update is required. This is also required of
a stationary mobile that reselects coverage from a cell in a different location area,
because of signal fade. Thus a subscriber has reliable access to the network and
may be reached with a call, while enjoying the freedom of mobility within the whole
coverage area.
When a subscriber is paged in an attempt to deliver a call or SMS and the subscriber
does not reply to that page then the subscriber is marked as absent in both the
MSC/VLR and the HLR (Mobile not reachable flag MNRF is set). The next time the
mobile performs a location update the HLR is updated and the mobile not reachable
flag is cleared.

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Location Area Update


UE SRNS New VLR HLR Old VLR

RRC Connection establishment

LA Update Request (old LAI, old TMSI)

Send Identification Request (TMSI)

Send Identification Ack. (IMSI, quintiplet)

Security procedures

Update Location
Cancel Location Comm.

Cancel Location Ack


Insert Subscriber Comm.

Insert Subscriber Ack.

Update Location Ack..


Location Update Accept (new LAI new TMSI

TMSI reallocation complete

Release

Figure 167 - Location Area Update

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6.5 Routing Area Update


A "routing area" is a subdivision of a "location area". Routing areas are used by
mobiles which are GPRS-attached. GPRS ("General Packet Radio Services"), GSM‘s
new data transmission technology, is optimized for "bursty" data communication
services, such as wireless internet/intranet, and multimedia services. It is also known
as GSM-IP ("Internet Protocol") because it will connect users directly to Internet
Service Providers (ISP).
The bursty nature of packet traffic means that more paging messages are expected
per mobile, and so it is worth knowing the location of the mobile more accurately than
it would be with traditional circuit-switched traffic. A change from routing area to
routing area (called a "Routing Area Update") is done in an almost identical way to a
change from location area to location area. The main differences are that the
"Serving GPRS Support Node" (SGSN) is the element involved.

Routing Area Update


UE SRNS New SGSN HLR Old SGSN

RRC Connection establishment

RA Update Request (old RAI, old P-TMSI)

SGSN Context Request (old P-TMSI, old RAI)

SGSN Context Response (IMSI, quintiplets

Security Procedures

Update GPRS Location


Cancel Location Comm.

Cancel Location Ack


Insert Subscriber Comm.

Insert Subscriber Ack.

Update GPRS Location Ack..


RA Update Accept (new RAI new P-TMSI

RA update complete

Release

Figure 168 - Routing Area Update

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