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LTE End to End System Part 2

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LTE End to End System Part 2
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LTE End to End System Part 2
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Table of Contents:

1 LTE / SAE Architecture ...................................................................................... 5


1.1 Main Benefits of LTE (1) ............................................................................ 6
1.2 Main Benefits of LTE (2) ............................................................................ 7
1.3 LTE End-to-End Technology and Procedures ............................................ 8
1.4 NSN LTE Release 50 Benefits ................................................................. 10
2 Voice Evolution ................................................................................................ 12
2.1 Voice Evolution ........................................................................................ 12
2.2 IMS emergency sessions ......................................................................... 13
3 Interoperability between LTE and 2G/3G/3GPP2............................................. 14
3.1 Interoperability – Introduction ................................................................... 14
3.2 Interworking with 2G/3G Networks ........................................................... 15
3.3 Common Core Concept ........................................................................... 16
3.4 CS Fallback to UTRAN ............................................................................ 17
3.5 Single Radio Voice Call Continuity ........................................................... 19
3.6 SRVCC to WCDMA ................................................................................. 20
3.7 SRVCC to GSM ....................................................................................... 22
3.8 Emergency Call Handling......................................................................... 23
3.9 Exercise ................................................................................................... 24
4 Transport Solutions ......................................................................................... 25
4.1 Transport Solutions - Introduction ............................................................ 25
4.2 Evolution towards Flat Network Architecture ............................................ 25
4.3 Transport Network for S1-U Interface....................................................... 26
4.4 Carrier Ethernet Transport ....................................................................... 27
4.5 IP Transport Network Measurement ........................................................ 29
4.6 Pseudo Wire Solutions ............................................................................. 29
4.7 Flexi Transport Sub-module FTIB ............................................................ 30
4.8 Flexi Transport Sub-module FTIF ............................................................ 31
4.9 Traffic Differentiation ................................................................................ 32
4.10 Synchronisation over Packet Networks .................................................... 35
4.11 Synchronisation Hub ................................................................................ 36
4.12 IP Layer Addressing................................................................................. 37
4.13 Ethernet OAM .......................................................................................... 38
4.14 QoS-aware Ethernet Switching ................................................................ 39
4.15 Ethernet Jumbo Frames........................................................................... 40
4.16 Multi-Operator Core Network ................................................................... 41
4.17 FlexiPacket Radio Connectivity ................................................................ 43
4.18 Exercise ................................................................................................... 44
5 Security Solutions ............................................................................................ 45
5.1 Introduction .............................................................................................. 45
5.2 EPS AKA Key Hierarchy .......................................................................... 45
5.3 Key Management during Inter-eNB Handover.......................................... 46
5.4 EPS AKA Signalling ................................................................................. 48
5.5 Confidentiality and Integrity Protection ..................................................... 49
5.6 Exercise ................................................................................................... 52
5.7 Lawful Interception ................................................................................... 53
5.8 LTE Firewall Support ............................................................................... 53
5.9 LTE Certificate Management ................................................................... 54
5.10 LTE User Account Management .............................................................. 55
5.11 LTE User Event Log Management ........................................................... 56
5.12 LTE IPsec Support ................................................................................... 57

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5.13 LTE O&M Transport Security ................................................................... 58


5.14 Certificate Management for iOMS ............................................................ 60
5.15 Crypto Agent ............................................................................................ 62
5.16 SW Verification Agent .............................................................................. 64
5.17 Local Link Layer Security ......................................................................... 65
5.18 Hierarchical Certificate Management ....................................................... 66
6 QoS Solutions ................................................................................................. 68
6.1 Introduction .............................................................................................. 68
6.2 EPS Bearer Concept................................................................................ 69
6.3 EPS QoS Profile Structure ....................................................................... 70
6.4 QoS Control in the EPS ........................................................................... 71
6.5 Rate Capping in UL and DL ..................................................................... 72
6.6 Support of UE-AMBR Modification ........................................................... 73
6.7 Support of Multiple EPS Bearers.............................................................. 74
6.8 Multiple GBR EPS Bearers per UE .......................................................... 75
6.9 EPS Bearers for Conversational Voice..................................................... 76
6.10 Service Differentiation for Non-GBR EPS Bearer ..................................... 77
6.11 Operator specific QCI .............................................................................. 78
6.12 Support of QCI 2, 3 and 4 ........................................................................ 79
6.13 Smart Admission Control ......................................................................... 81
6.14 ARP Based Admission Control for E-RABs .............................................. 82
6.15 E-RAB Modification .................................................................................. 83
6.16 Policy and Charging Control .................................................................... 84
6.17 PCC Signalling during LTE Attach ........................................................... 86
6.18 QoS Management Example 1 .................................................................. 87
6.19 QoS Management Example 2 .................................................................. 90
6.20 Exercise ................................................................................................... 91
6.21 Commercial Mobile Alert System ............................................................. 92
6.22 ETWS Broadcast ..................................................................................... 93
7 LTE Charging Architecture .............................................................................. 95
7.1 Offline Charging ....................................................................................... 95
7.2 Online Charging ....................................................................................... 97
8 Location Solutions ........................................................................................... 99
8.1 Support of Cell Based Location Service ................................................... 99
8.2 OTDOA .................................................................................................. 100
9 Subscriber Data Management ....................................................................... 102
9.1 Subscriber Data Management ............................................................... 102
10 Network Management.................................................................................... 103
10.1 Overview ................................................................................................ 103
10.2 Self-Organising Network (SON) Solutions .............................................. 104
10.3 Hybrid SON Concept ............................................................................. 105
10.4 PRACH management ............................................................................ 106
10.5 Automatic interface alarm correlation ..................................................... 107
10.6 LTE Timing Advance Evaluation ............................................................ 108
10.7 Configurable cell trace content ............................................................... 109
11 Configuration Management............................................................................ 111
11.1 System Upgrade with Backward Compatibility ....................................... 111

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1 LTE / SAE Architecture


UTRAN Long Term Evolution (LTE) refers to the long term evolution of the 3GPP
radio access technology and is considered the successor of the current UMTS
system.

The LTE work in 3GPP is closely aligned to the 3GPP system architecture evolution
(SAE) framework which is concerned with the evolved core network architecture. The
LTE/SAE framework defines the flat, scalable, IP-based architecture of the Evolved
Packet System (EPS) consisting of a radio access network part (Evolved UTRAN)
and the Evolved Packet Core (EPC).

Note that the Evolved Packet System is purely packet based. Voice transport is thus
based on Voice over IP (VoIP) technology. Circuit-switched (CS) voice traffic is
supported by using the CS fallback (CSFB) solution. Voice call continuity between
the packet-switched and circuit-switched domain is enabled by the single radio voice
call continuity (SR-VCC) interworking solution.

Move your mouse pointer over the items in the architecture figure for a short
introduction to each item.

The LTE radio interface (air interface, LTE-Uu) is between the user equipment (UE)
and the eNodeB.

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The evolved Node B (eNodeB) supports the LTE radio interface and provides similar
packet-switched functionality as a traditional radio network controller (RNC). As a
result, the Evolved UTRAN does not require a separate RNC network element, in
other words the architecture is “flat” (architecture contains fewer types of network
entities and interfaces).

The X2 interface between two eNodeB network elements carries signalling and user
plane traffic during an inter-eNodeB handover.

The S1-MME interface carries control plane signalling information between the
eNodeB and Mobility Management Entity.

The S1-U interface between the eNodeB and Serving Gateway carries the user plane
data over a so-called GTP tunnel.

The S4 interface between the S-GW and SGSN provides a GTP tunnel for the user
plane during inter-system mobility.

The S3 interface carries signalling between the MME and Serving GPRS Support
Node (SGSN) located in a 2G/3G packet-switched core network. In the case of a pre-
3GPP Rel-8 SGSN, the Gn interface is used instead.

The S11 interface carries signalling messages between the Serving Gateway and the
Mobility Management Entity.

The S6a interface is used for transferring subscription and authentication data
between the Home Subscriber Server (HSS) and MME.

The SGi interface is between the PDN Gateway and the packet data network (PDN).
The packet data network may be an operator-external public or private IP network, or
an IP network belonging to the operator, for instance providing IP Multimedia
Subsystem (IMS) services.

The Serving Gateway (S-GW) and PDN Gateway (P-GW) provide the user plane
connectivity between the access network and the external packet data network
(PDN). The P-GW also includes GGSN functionality. In the NSN LTE solution, it is
possible to implement these functional entities either within a single node or as
separate nodes.

The Mobility Management Entity (MME) provides the basic control plane functionality
in the Evolved Packet Core network. Note that user plane traffic does not go through
the MME.

Legacy Gn/Gp interface connectivity to the EPS is also supported.

1.1 Main Benefits of LTE (1)

LTE technology offers the following benefits:

• LTE offers peak data rates of 150 Mbit/s in downlink (assuming 2 x 2 MIMO spatial
multiplexing and 20 MHz channel bandwidth) and 50 Mbit/s in uplink, thus supporting
UE category 4 devices as defined in 3GPP TS 36.306.

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• LTE enables round trip times (RTT) of less than 10 ms. The round trip time or user
plane latency is the time it takes for information to travel from the mobile terminal to
the server in the network and back to the terminal.

• Also the control plane latency - the time needed to allocate transport resources - is
important. The requirement for the control plane latency in LTE is less than 100 ms.

• Contrary to HSPA, LTE offers packet scheduling in the frequency domain in


addition to packet scheduling in the time domain. This feature greatly increases the
spectrum efficiency of LTE.

• The LTE capacity or spectrum efficiency is two to four times higher than that of a
3GPP Release 6 HSPA
system.

1.2 Main Benefits of LTE (2)

A major advantage of LTE over WCDMA or HSPA is the possibility of allocating


spectrum bandwidths of varying size to the mobile users.

LTE offers several channel bandwidth values between 1.4 and 20 MHz. By contrast,
the channel bandwidth in WCDMA or HSPA is always fixed at 5 MHz.

A small channel bandwidth allows easier spectrum re-farming and is beneficial for
mobile operators short on spectrum.

On the other hand, a large channel bandwidth is required if large peak data rates are
to be supported.

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NSN LTE release 50 introduces a carrier aggregation technology feature. This


feature allows further flexibility in spectrum allocation by providing the UE with the
ability to extend transmission bandwidth by grouping multiple component carriers
(CC).

Therefore, the operators with fragmented 10 + 10 MHz spectrum allocations can use
carrier aggregation technology to offer the same downlink peak rates as the
operators with a single 20 MHz band.

1.3 LTE End-to-End Technology and Procedures

In LTE End to End System Part 1, we looked into LTE procedures such as mobility
management procedures in the ECM-IDLE state, connection management
procedures, and mobility management procedures in the ECM-CONNECTED state,
also known as handovers.

In this course, LTE End to End System Part 2, we will turn our attention to various
supporting technologies and solutions needed for achieving a complete functioning
end-to-end system. Topics in the course include:

 User plane transport, including the new Carrier Ethernet Transport options and
synchronisation

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 Security solutions such as authentication and encryption of user and control


data

 Quality of Service (QoS) solutions

 A new concept called policy and charging control (PCC)

 Charging solutions

 Interoperability between LTE and 2G/3G or 3GPP2 systems, including


concepts such as CS fallback and SRVCC

 Network management

 Radio network planning

 Subscriber data management.

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1.4 NSN LTE Release 50 Benefits

The NSN LTE release 50 introduces many features that bring the following benefits:

 A range of new RF modules and Remote Radio Heads has been introduced to
ensure better peak data rates.

 Release 50 allows 3MHz and 1.4 MHz cell bandwidth deployment.

 A short DRX (Discontinuous Reception) is introduced in addition to long DRX.


This adds more flexibility to the DRX inactivity timer. Hence, improved power
savings at the mobile terminals can be promised.

 An enhanced balanced resource usage in LTE RAN is introduced. In RRC-idle


mode, the “Idle mode load balancing” feature can be used. On the other
hand, in RRC-connected mode, the “inter-eNodeB inter-frequency load
balancing” feature can be used.

 A quality-based inter-frequency and inter-radio access technology idle-mode


mobility cell re-selection is introduced by the use of Referenced Signal
Received Quality (RSRQ). Meanwhile, in RRC-connected mode, RSRQ is
added to RSRP measurements to allow a more accurate decision on
handover to another radio technology.

 An increased cell-edge uplink performance and reduced PDCCH signaling load


can be achieved with the use of the TTI bundling feature. TTI bundling allows
allocating one transport block in uplink to four TTIs and up to three PRBs,
which leads to an improved uplink link budget.

 The connection reliability between the eNodeB and the network can be
improved by the use of the RL50 feature Intra Cell handover, because it
allows security keys refreshment and RRC-synchronization. It is also used to
activate/deactivate TTI bundling for the UE.

 A handover between TDD LTE and FDD LTE is enabled. Therefore, the
operator can offer service continuity between FDD and TDD. This feature
enables complete LTE global roaming.

 The IP backhaul networks of shared RAN can be separately managed by the


use of separate user and control planes for each operator at the eNodeB.

 ZUC algorithms EEA3 and EIA3 are supported by the Flexi Multiradio BTS.
This provides improved confidentiality and integrity protection.

 A hierarchical certificate authority is implemented in release 50 to make the


certificate management of the Flexi Multi Radio BTS more efficient and
secure.

 NSN LTE release 50 introduces a carrier aggregation technology feature.


Therefore, the operators with fragmented 10 + 10 MHz spectrum allocations

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can offer the same downlink peak rates as the operators with a single 20 MHz
band by using carrier aggregation technology.

 An adaptive closed loop 4x2 MIMO is supported in release 50 in addition to the


2x2 MIMO. 4x2 MIMO uses four transmit antennas and two receiving
antennas. It offers additional cell coverage and small capacity gain.

 The LTE release RL50 Flexi Multiradio BTS supports 2RX and 4RX diversity for
uplink. The 4RX diversity provides up to 3dB uplink gain compared to 2RX
diversity reception as the average received power is doubled because of four
antenna reception. 4RX diversity offers higher uplink data throughput and
enables fewer BTS sites for coverage.

 The inter-cell interference in dense network deployments can be further


reduced by the use of the FDD Super-cell feature which allows the combining
of two 'normal' overlapping cells to one super-cell.

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2 Voice Evolution

2.1 Voice Evolution

An important consideration when deploying LTE networks is the fact that operators
have already heavily invested in circuit-switched (CS) networks - primarily for offering
CS voice services - and do not want to totally abandon this technology, at least in the
short term.

As a viable interworking solution, NSN offers the possibility to add VoIP application
server functionality to the MSC Server in a 3GPP Release 4 network. This solution is
called NSN Mobile VoIP Server (NVS).

The NVS primarily functions as a VoIP application server connected to an IP


Multimedia Subsystem (IMS) network via the standard 3GPP IMS Service Control
(ISC) interface. This allows the operator to offer existing 2G or 3G services to VoIP
clients behind the IMS. Such services are, for instance, 2G or 3G supplementary
services, Intelligent Network (IN) services, mobile IN services (also known as CAMEL
services), and emergency services.

Also LTE users can access these CS services via the IMS and NVS.

In the user plane, interworking is provided by the Mobile Media Gateway (MGW). The
voice call is packet-switched towards the VoIP terminal and circuit-switched towards
the terminal behind the CS network.

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2.2 IMS emergency sessions

The LTE release RL30 enables the Flexi Multiradio BTS to support emergency
sessions via IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS). Support for an emergency session is a
regulatory requirement for voice service over an LTE network.

IMS emergency sessions are identified by a cause value at the establishment of an


RRC connection, and by an ARP value in the EPS bearer.

The Flexi Multiradio BTS allows all IMS emergency sessions until the operator-
configured thresholds are reached. Emergency sessions will be rejected by the
eNode B if:

 the admission control threshold has been reached

 the related QCI is not enabled

 the related EPS bearer combination is not enabled

Handovers can be handled differently for emergency sessions. First, handover


restriction lists are ignored. And second, separate neighbor cell lists are applied for
intra- and inter-frequency, and inter-RAT handover cases.

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3 Interoperability between LTE and 2G/3G/3GPP2

3.1 Interoperability – Introduction

Seamless interworking between LTE and non-LTE 3GPP and 3GPP2 networks will
be ensured by various means.

The interworking support will include seamless cell reselection in idle mode as well
as during packet transport sessions. As a result, subscribers will not notice possible
discontinuities in LTE coverage.

NSN load- and service-based handover features today allow the network operator to
balance the system load between 2G and 3G networks in an optimal fashion. It is
possible to direct voice traffic and data-centric services towards specific networks or
frequency layers. Similar functionality will also enable load sharing between 2G/3G
and LTE networks.

Initial LTE implementations will be focusing on offering high-speed mobile broadband


services. In this context the possibility of providing a common packet core for LTE
and 2G/3G systems will be an important issue.

Regarding voice services, it should be noted that the Evolved Packet Core cannot
handle circuit-switched voice traffic. However, solutions such as CS fallback and
single radio voice call continuity (SRVCC) will ensure seamless interworking also in
the case of circuit-switched voice services.

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3.2 Interworking with 2G/3G Networks

LTE interworking with 2G/3G networks is required for instance during 3GPP inter
radio access technology (inter-RAT) handovers.

On the 2G/3G side, the Serving GPRS Support Node (SGSN) is responsible for the
transfer of packet data between the Evolved Packet Core and the legacy 2G/3G
radio access network (RAN). It should be noted that the functionality of the SGSN
differs depending on whether it is a 3GPP release 8 node or not and whether a direct
tunnel is used between the Serving Gateway and 3G RAN or not.

In the case of a 3GPP release 8 SGSN, the interworking always requires the S3
signalling interface between the MME and SGSN. Obviously, there is no user data
traffic over this interface.

The GTP tunnel for the user data can be established either via the SGSN or directly
between the Serving Gateway and 3G RAN. In the former case, the S4 interface is
necessary for handling both the GTP-related signalling and the user plane traffic. In
the latter case, the S12 interface provides the direct GTP tunnel, whereas the SGSN
is still needed for establishing this tunnel.

If the SGSN is not 3GPP release 8 compatible, interworking can be supported by


providing the Gn interface between the SGSN and the MME (instead of the S3
interface) and between the SGSN and the PDN Gateway (instead of the Serving
Gateway).

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3.3 Common Core Concept

As far as mobile broadband services are concerned, it is possible to implement a


common packet core, provided there exists the S4 interface between SGSN and
Serving Gateway network entities.

The common core offers optimised interworking between LTE and non-LTE 3GPP
access networks. This concept provides similar handling for LTE and 2G/3G bearers,
as well as a common interface towards the Home Subscriber Server (HSS).

Moreover, the common core enables a common QoS solution for LTE and non-LTE
systems, for instance employing the Policy and Charging Rules Function (PCRF)
which will be introduced later in this course.

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3.4 CS Fallback to UTRAN

From LTE release RL40 onwards the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports circuit-switched
(CS) fallback to UTRAN – for multimode devices with according UE capabilities –
using the packet switched (PS) handover mechanism. Previously, CS fallback to
UTRAN was supported using the RRC connection release with redirection
mechanism.

A major benefit of CS fallback is that the CS core network investments can be reused
during the initial phase of LTE. As far as packet switched handover based CS
fallback is concerned, this mechanism shows better performance than redirection
based CS fallback.

The following CS fallback scenarios are supported:

• Mobile originated CS fallback where the UE is in RRC IDLE mode

• Mobile originated CS fallback where the UE is in RRC CONNECTED mode

• Mobile terminated CS fallback where the UE is in RRC IDLE mode

• Mobile terminated CS fallback where the UE is in RRC CONNECTED mode.

Note that the operator can configure neighbor cells to be considered for inter radio
access technology (IRAT) measurements to support either “normal” CS fallback or
“emergency” CS fallback.

The operator can enable or disable CS fallback to UTRAN on a per-cell basis via
O&M means.

Use your pointer to see the related performance counters provided by the Flexi
Multiradio BTS.

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3.5 Single Radio Voice Call Continuity

If the user terminal supports VoIP over LTE, a solution called single radio voice call
continuity (SRVCC) is available for performing a handover from the LTE radio
network to the 2G/3G radio network without interrupting the call. Such a handover is
necessary when the terminal enters an area without LTE coverage.

SRVCC requires modifications to the Evolved Packet Core and the 2G/3G circuit-
switched core network in order to support the handover signalling over the new Sv
interface between the MME and MSC Server.

Note also the fact that VoIP session control requires interfacing towards a VoIP
Application Server in the IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS). NSN also offers solutions
where the VoIP Application Server is integrated in the MSC Server.

At a later point in time, when LTE coverage becomes more widespread, the need for
SRVCC will gradually disappear.

The SRVCC procedure is being standardised in 3GPP Release 8 in Technical


Specification 23.216.

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3.6 SRVCC to WCDMA

The LTE-to-WCDMA Single Radio Voice Call Continuity (SRVCC) functionality of the
Flexi Multiradio BTS provides seamless service continuity for voice services when
performing a handover from an LTE cell to a WCDMA cell. All non-voice services will
be handed over to the packet switched (PS) domain of the UMTS network.

The functionality is only applicable to SRVCC capable multimode devices supporting


both LTE and WCDMA in the corresponding frequency band.

The handover procedure itself is identical to a conventional LTE-to-WCDMA


handover; in other words the lists, measurements and thresholds of the same
neighbor cells are used.

The eNodeB indicates to the MME with a “Handover Required” message that
SRVCC should be initiated. The eNodeB will trigger SRVCC only if the UE has an
EPS bearer with QCI=1 established and the MME and UE are SRVCC-capable.

The operator can enable or disable the SRVCC functionality on a per-cell basis via
O&M means.

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3.7 SRVCC to GSM

The LTE-to-GSM Single Radio Voice Call Continuity (SRVCC) functionality of the
Flexi Multiradio BTS provides seamless service continuity for voice services when
performing a handover from an LTE cell to a GSM cell.

The SRVCC functionality does not support dual transfer mode (DTM) or packet
switched handovers, in other words existing non-voice bearers are not handed over
to GSM. An operator-configurable switch is supported that determines whether to
suspend the data session or not.

The functionality is only applicable to SRVCC capable multimode devices supporting


both LTE and GSM in the corresponding frequency band.

The eNodeB will trigger SRVCC – by performing inter radio access technology
(IRAT) measurements – only if the UE has an EPS bearer with QCI=1 established
and the MME and UE are SRVCC-capable. The target cells for the IRAT
measurements can be configured by the operator. Furthermore, the measurement
configuration such as source cell thresholds (RSRP), target cell thresholds (RSSI),
hysteresis, time to trigger, and speed dependent scaling can also be configured by
the operator.

The operator can enable or disable the SRVCC functionality on a per-cell basis via
O&M means.

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3.8 Emergency Call Handling

Regarding voice services, it could be that first-generation LTE terminals will support
neither VoIP nor circuit-switched voice, and voice services will continue to be
handled separately by the 2G/3G network.

However, multi-mode LTE terminals will eventually become available. These will
support both LTE packet services and circuit-switched voice, but not necessarily
VoIP. These terminals can be simultaneously attached to LTE and 2G/3G radio
networks.

When the user initiates a voice call, the call is transferred to the 2G/3G network.
When the user receives a voice call, the paging takes place via the LTE network,
after which the terminal is transferred from the LTE to the 2G/3G radio network
before the call is set up. This is called CS fallback.

CS fallback requires modifications to the Evolved Packet Core and the 2G/3G circuit-
switched core network to support the enhanced signalling over the new SGs interface
between the MME and MSC Server.

The CS fallback procedure is being standardised in 3GPP Release 8 in Technical


Specification 23.272.

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3.9 Exercise

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4 Transport Solutions

4.1 Transport Solutions - Introduction

In order to support the increase in data traffic anticipated in an LTE radio network,
the transport network also has to be significantly expanded. NSN provides a
comprehensive portfolio of transport solutions both for existing or new radio access
networks and for existing or new backhaul, aggregation and backbone networks.

Mobile operators can easily transition from a classic backhaul design to a hybrid
backhaul network, by adding Ethernet connectivity to existing nodes already offering
TDM connectivity. The TDM and Ethernet networks extend in parallel from the cell
site to the controller nodes in the 2G or 3G radio access network and the Ethernet
network extends in solitude to the Serving Gateway in the Evolved Packet Core.

New backhaul networks can be deployed using Carrier Ethernet Transport (CET)
technology. Pseudo wire solutions are available for taking care of the native TDM
and ATM traffic, if required.

4.2 Evolution towards Flat Network Architecture

User plane transport solutions are closely interconnected with the evolution towards
a flat network architecture.

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In a traditional 3GPP network both the user plane data and control plane signalling is
carried between the UE and GGSN via the BTS, RNC and SGSN. The high-speed
packet access (HSPA) solution in 3GPP release 6 provides greatly increased radio
access capacity when compared to earlier solutions.

As a next step in the network architecture evolution, 3GPP release 7 offers the
possibility of implementing a direct GTP tunnel for carrying user data between the
RNC and GGSN. The control plane signalling still takes place via the SGSN.

The basic idea of the Internet HSPA (I-HSPA) solution is to integrate the RNC packet
switched functionality into the base stations. At the same time, the GTP tunnel for the
user plane traffic is extended to the I-HSPA adapter in the BTS. The direct tunnel
solution offers high bitrates in a very cost efficient manner and reduces the round trip
time (RTT) in the user plane.

The LTE network architecture is similar to the I-HSPA architecture, although the
functionality and names of the network elements have changed. Also, the LTE radio
interface provides greatly increased radio access capacity when compared to HSPA.

4.3 Transport Network for S1-U Interface

A typical user plane transport network solution between eNodeB entities and the
Serving Gateway consists of access network sections, aggregation networks, and a
Multi-Protocol Label Switching (MPLS) backbone network.

The access network typically consists of FlexiPacket microwave radio links


interconnected via a FlexiPacket radio hub. This solution offers low-delay and high-
capacity interconnection links enabling fast inter-eNodeB handovers over the X2
interface.
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The access network is partitioned into different virtual LANs (VLANs) containing one
or more eNodeB entities each.

The aggregation network typically uses a ring topology and virtual private LAN
service (VPLS) transport which in turn is based on MPLS technology. One Label
Switch Path (LSP) is reserved for each access network VLAN connection as shown
in the figure.

The aggregation network can be connected to the Serving Gateway via a more
“traditional” MPLS backbone network, where the layer 3 routers are interconnected
using a mesh topology, and the IP traffic to/from a certain aggregation network is
directed to/from the Serving Gateway again along a certain Label Switch Path.

4.4 Carrier Ethernet Transport

The ever-increasing popularity of Ethernet technology has resulted in a world-wide


effort to develop standardised carrier-grade Ethernet transport solutions, collectively
known under the name Carrier Ethernet Transport (CET), as a cost-effective
alternative to traditional time division multiplex (TDM) transport solutions such as
SDH.

Carrier Ethernet Transport could be deployed in both access and aggregation


networks. In this case, all LTE, 3G and 2G traffic can be carried over the packet-
based backhaul infrastructure as explained on the next page.

Carrier Ethernet can be characterised by five attributes:

 Standardised services

 Scalability

 Reliability
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 Quality of Service

 Service management

Use your mouse pointer to learn more about these attributes.

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4.5 IP Transport Network Measurement

The LTE release RL30 introduces the feature IP Transport Network Measurement. It
enables active measurements of IP network quality in the mobile backhaul network
between two points – an eNode B and another point. One point performs test traffic
generation and analysis. The other point must be able to send back the test traffic.

With this feature, the operator is able to monitor the network conditions and can react
quickly to potential service degradations. Furthermore, the measurements provide an
indication of possible violations against a Service Level Agreement. The built-in
feature provides savings for the operator because it removes the need for expensive
measurement equipment.

The measured values are: round-trip time - presented as minimum, maximum and
average value - and the number of sent and lost packets. Measurements can be
made separately for each quality of service class.

The measurements are performed using Two-way Active Measurement Protocol


(TWAMP), where one end point is a sender and the other can be either a responder
that generates response messages or an echo server that only returns the messages
that are sent.

The measurements are aggregated into performance measurement counters. Alarms


will be raised if the network condition falls below a configurable threshold.

4.6 Pseudo Wire Solutions

Not only LTE traffic, but also 2G, WCDMA and HSPA traffic can be carried over the
packet-based infrastructure extending towards the BTS site. This is possible using

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Carrier Ethernet Transport as explained on the previous page together with a


concept called pseudo wire transport.

In the case of a 3G radio access network, if the Iub interface is based on ATM
transport the traffic is carried over ATM pseudo wire connections, for instance one
connection for circuit-switched traffic and another for packet-switched traffic.

If the Iub interface is based on IP transport, a pseudo wire solution is naturally not
required.

In a similar fashion, 2G traffic can be carried over a TDM pseudo wire connection
between the BTS and the base station controller (BSC). In this case the time division
multiplex (TDM) signals are carried transparently over the radio access network
without ”noticing” the underlying packet technology.

4.7 Flexi Transport Sub-module FTIB

The LTE release RL10 introduces a new transport sub-module of type FTIB to be
used in a Flexi Multiradio BTS.

This transport sub-module supports WCDMA, I-HSPA and LTE system technology,
enabling seamless migration from WCDMA to LTE via a software update.
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The FTIB sub-module provides the following physical interfaces:

 two electrical Gigabit Ethernet interfaces

 one optical Gigabit Ethernet interface via a small form-factor pluggable (SFP)
module

 four symmetrical E1/T1/JT1 interfaces.

Furthermore, the sub-module hardware supports the Timing over Packet (ToP) and
Synchronous Ethernet synchronisation solutions, as well as IPsec-based security
solutions with 160 Mbit/s downlink-plus-uplink throughput performance.

4.8 Flexi Transport Sub-module FTIF

The LTE release RL40 introduces a new transport sub-module of type FTIF to be
used together with a multiradio system module in a Flexi Multiradio 10 BTS.

This transport sub-module variant provides eight time division multiplex (TDM)
interfaces and two Gigabit Ethernet Combo ports.

Each Gigabit Ethernet Combo port consists of one Gigabit Ethernet electrical
interface and one optical interface based on small form-factor pluggable (SFP)
module interfacing. Note that the interfaces in a Combo port share the same port in
the system module and thus cannot be used at the same time.

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The eight TDM interfaces are accessed via four RJ48 ports. A special cable is
required for providing two TDM interfaces per port.

Note that the Flexi multiradio system module (for instance FSMF) plus the transport
sub-module of type FTIF form a single logical transport entity that provides up to
three Gigabit Ethernet interfaces.

The transport sub-module of type FTIF supports the following functionality:

• Synchronization via the TDM interface

• eNodeB chaining using the two optical or electrical connections

• Synchronization hub functionality if based on Synchronous Ethernet input or


output

• Transport link redundancy using the two optical or electrical connections

• Circuit Emulation Service over Packet Switched Network (CESoPSN)


functionality for legacy BTS co-location.

4.9 Traffic Differentiation

The LTE release RL10 introduces the following traffic differentiation solutions:

 Traffic differentiation in the IP layer (also known as Layer 3)

 Traffic differentiation in the Ethernet layer (also known as Layer 2)

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 VLAN-based traffic differentiation.

Traffic differentiation in the IP layer is based on the Differentiated Services Code


Point (DSCP) - a 6-bit traffic priority indicator in the IP packet header. Traffic end
points set the DSCP values, and the IP routers in the network handle the packets
according to the DSCP value.

Traffic differentiation in the Ethernet layer is based on three Priority Code Point
(PCP) bits, contained in the Ethernet frame header, as defined in the standard IEEE
802.1p. Traffic end points perform the mapping between DSCP values and PCP
values, and the Ethernet switches in the network handle the packets according to the
PCP value.

Traffic differentiation can also be achieved by assigning different virtual LANs


(VLANs) for different types of traffic. In this way, the IP traffic in the control, user,
management and synchronisation plane can be separated, offering benefits both in
terms of QoS and security. VLAN traffic differentiation is based on a 32-bit field
(VLAN tag) inserted in the Ethernet frame header. Each VLAN may also be
associated with a dedicated IP address at the eNodeB side of the connection.

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4.10 Synchronisation over Packet Networks

The eNodeB entities in the E-UTRAN require highly accurate timing information. This
timing information can be extracted directly from the received digital signal if the
transport network is based on time division multiplex (TDM) technology, for instance
a Synchronous Digital Hierarchy (SDH) transmission system.

However, the interfacing towards the Evolved Packet Core is most probably based
on Ethernet transport at the physical layer level. In this case the timing information is
retrieved either using the Timing over Packet (ToP) solution in accordance with the
IEEE 1588 version 2 specification, or using the Synchronous Ethernet timing
solution.

In the ToP timing solution, specific timing packets with time stamps are sent over the
Ethernet transport network from a ToP master clock to timing receivers in the
eNodeB entities, where the timing information is extracted.

The reference clock signal for the ToP master clock is received either from the TDM
network or from the global positioning system (GPS).

The ToP timing solution relies on using protocol layers 2 or 3 for carrying the timing
information through the network. By contrast, in the more advanced Synchronous
Ethernet timing solution (to be used together with a Carrier Ethernet transport
network) the timing information is embedded in the physical layer.

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4.11 Synchronisation Hub

The LTE release RL40 introduces a synchronization hub that allows one of several
synchronization output signals to be derived from a number of synchronization input
sources.

As a benefit, co-located or chained base stations can rely on the synchronization


capabilities of the eNodeB. The synchronization capabilities are aligned between
WCDMA and LTE.

Selectable synchronization input signals are:

• Timing over Packet (ToP) according to the IEEE1588-2008 specification

• “ToP with phase” input signal

• Synchronous Ethernet (SyncE) input signal

• Plesiochronous Digital Hierarchy (PDH) E1/T1 line interface

• 2.048 MHz input signal

• Global Positioning System (GPS) one-pulse-per-second (1PPS) input signal.

The synchronization output signal options are:

• PDH E1/T1 line interface

• 2.048 MHz output signal

• 1PPS output signal (derived from GPS 1PPS input).

Note that the capability to generate Synchronous Ethernet signals is part of the RL40
feature “Synchronous Ethernet Generation”.

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4.12 IP Layer Addressing

LTE technology offers the following IP layer addressing features:

• Separate IP addresses for each VLAN

• SCTP multihoming in the control plane.

When applying traffic differentiation by assigning different virtual LANs for the control,
user, management and synchronisation plane, the eNodeB can be configured with a
separate IP address for each plane.

Address sharing, that is, configuration using the same IP address, is also possible. In
the simplest configuration, the eNodeB provides a single IP address for all four
planes.

Stream Control Transmission Protocol (SCTP) is a transmission layer protocol, like


UDP or TCP, located above IP in the protocol stack. SCTP is often used in the
control plane. SCTP multihoming means that SCTP provides the possibility of
reaching a certain node via several IP addresses - thus increasing the reliability of
the connection.

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4.13 Ethernet OAM

The LTE release RL20 offers a transport solution called Ethernet OAM.

Ethernet OAM means adding OAM (Operations, Administration and Maintenance)


functionality to the Ethernet layer. This is achieved using two Ethernet OAM
protocols: Link Layer OAM and Ethernet Service OAM. Use your mouse pointer to
see the supported functionality in LTE release RL20.

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4.14 QoS-aware Ethernet Switching

The RL20 feature ”QoS-aware Ethernet Switching” means that the integrated
Ethernet switch of the transport sub-module in the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports
blocking-free and Quality-of-Service (QoS)-aware Ethernet switching.

One Gigabit Ethernet interface of the transport sub-module supports the backhaul
connection, while one or two more interfaces may be connected to one or two more
eNodeBs at the same or another site. Thus the need for a separate external switch
device for daisy-chaining at the eNodeB site is avoided.

Four QoS priority levels are supported. The traffic differentiation is based either on
the Differentiated Services Code Point (DSCP) traffic priority indicator contained in
the IP packet header, or the three Priority Code Point (PCP) bits contained in the
VLAN tag in the Ethernet frame header. Also VLAN filtering based on the VLAN ID in
the VLAN tag is supported.

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The feature also includes policing of the traffic, and shaping of the aggregated traffic
in the uplink according to the service level agreement (SLA).

The traffic policing is applied in order to protect the eNodeB from flooding and
interfering with the internal message flows of the eNodeB. It can be configured per
ingress port, or can be switched of - the default option.

4.15 Ethernet Jumbo Frames

In LTE release RL30, the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports Ethernet jumbo frames. The
jumbo frames are Ethernet frames with more than 1500 bytes of payload.

If the user's IP packet is 1500 bytes long, it will cause fragmentation at the Ethernet
transport layer due to additional overhead from enclosing protocol headers such as
GTP, UDP, and IPsec. Thus the resulting packet is larger than the 1500 bytes, which
is the maximum payload size for an Ethernet frame – without the jumbo frame
feature.

The Flexi Multiradio BTS supports Ethernet jumbo frames up to 1644 bytes at the
transport interface. The benefit of this is to avoid IP fragmentation and re-assembly
or the reduction of the user's IP layer maximum transmission unit (MTU) size.

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4.16 Multi-Operator Core Network

This RL20 feature enables a Flexi Multiradio BTS to be connected to the Evolved
Packet Core (EPC) of two different operators.

In this way the operators are able to share:

 spectrum

 BTS sites

 RF lines and equipment

 BTS transport interfaces

 BTS RF capacity

 BTS baseband capacity

 Operations support system (OSS) functions in the BTS.

The assignment of PLMN IDs to the shared cells is done via SIB1 configuration. This
information is necessary for selecting the correct S1 interface during the LTE attach
procedure.

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All enabled BTS features are available for both operators. Furthermore, all O&M
settings, including neighbor cell lists, are common for both operators in the case of
shared cells. Also, the same IPsec transport settings are applied for both operators.

In NSN LTE RL50, the Transport Separation for Radio Access Network (RAN)
sharing feature has been introduced in order to achieve a RAN Sharing scenario
where IP networks for mobile backhaul are separately administered. In here, each
network/operator can be separated by the use of dedicated VLAN.

The eNodeB divides the IP addresses on the operators equally, so each operator will
have one user plane address and one control plane address.

The Management plane (M-plane) and Synchronization-plane (S-plane) are owned


by one of the operators. The eNodeB supports a single M-plane and a single S-plane
application address.

The shared eNodeB must have a different IP address for each operator. Meanwhile,
there is no restriction on SAE-GW and MME IP addresses.

This feature is based on Flexi MR10BTS and FlexiLite hardware.

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4.17 FlexiPacket Radio Connectivity

The LTE release RL20 provides the possibility of managing both near-end and far-
end FlexiPacket Radio equipment by using a local management terminal (LMT)
attached to the local management port of the Flexi Multiradio BTS.

The Flexi Multiradio BTS assigns a separate virtual LAN (VLAN) for the management
traffic. Note that the VLAN ID selected in the Flexi Multiradio BTS has to match the
VLAN ID configured for the management plane in the near-end FlexiPacket Radio
equipment.

As a benefit of using a separate VLAN for the management plane, local


commissioning and management of the FlexiPacket Radio equipment does not
require interrupting the backhaul traffic. Also, the Ethernet cabling between the Flexi
Multiradio BTS and the FlexiPacket Radio near-end equipment need not be modified
in any way.

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4.18 Exercise

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5 Security Solutions

5.1 Introduction

The LTE security architecture is being defined by the 3GPP Services and System
Aspects Working Group on Security, SA3.

The Evolved Packet System (EPS) authentication and key agreement (AKA) is based
on UMTS AKA. Since the AKA framework involves mutual authentication, 2G
subscribers with a GSM Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) will not be allowed to
access an LTE network.

EPS authentication and key agreement is explained on the following pages. First, we
will examine the key management process, and then the actual signalling taking
place during authentication.

Interworking with non-3GPP networks will be based on Extensible Authentication


Protocol (EAP) AKA. For this purpose, the Evolved Packet Core must include a so-
called authentication, authorisation and accounting (AAA) server.

5.2 EPS AKA Key Hierarchy

The EPS authentication and key agreement procedure (EPS AKA) specified in 3GPP
Release 8 in Technical Specification 33.401 is based on the UMTS AKA procedure,
providing mutual authentication between the UE and the network as in UMTS AKA,

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but employing a more elaborate key hierarchy, resulting among others in faster
handovers.

At the top of the hierarchy, a permanent key (K) is safely stored in the Universal
Subscriber Identity Module (USIM) and in the Authentication Center (AuC) in the
home network of the subscriber.

From this key, a pair of keys (CK, IK) are derived and stored in the UE and home
subscriber server (HSS), respectively. Using these keys in combination with the
serving network's identity (SN ID), the Access Security Management Entity (ASME)
key is derived. On the network side, this key is then included in the EPS
authentication vector and is sent to the MME.

From the ASME key, the UE and MME derive three keys: two keys for encryption and
integrity protection of the Non Access Stratum (NAS) signalling, and another key that
on the network side is sent to the eNodeB. This eNodeB key is used in the eNodeB
and UE for generating two more keys for encryption and integrity protection of the
RRC signalling over the radio interface, and one more key for user plane traffic
encryption over the radio interface. Note that there is no integrity protection (and
corresponding key) for the user plane traffic.

5.3 Key Management during Inter-eNB Handover

During an inter-eNodeB handover, the keys for encryption and integrity protection of
the Non Access Stratum signalling need not be changed, unless the handover also
involves the MME relocation procedure.

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However, the eNodeB key must be changed during an inter-eNodeB handover. This
means that the keys derived from the eNodeB key are also automatically changed.

The eNodeB key handling procedure is as follows.

 The source eNodeB generates an interim eNodeB key and sends this key to
the target eNodeB.

 The target eNodeB derives the new eNodeB key using the received interim
eNodeB key.

 The target eNodeB naturally also derives new RRC signalling and user data
protection keys.

On the UE side, the same algorithms are used, resulting in the same new keying
information.

Note that this key management solution is much faster than the alternative of
performing a completely new authentication and key agreement run ”from scratch”
involving the Home Subscriber server (HSS).

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5.4 EPS AKA Signalling

In LTE End to End System Part 1, we investigated several signalling procedures


where authentication was an integral part of the procedure. Now let us examine the
authentication signalling in more detail.

The MME starts the authentication procedure by sending the user’s International
Mobile Subscriber Identity (IMSI) and the serving network's identity (SN ID) to the
HSS in the user’s home network. If the MME does not know the IMSI, this information
must first be retreived from the UE. Since the IMSI is sent over the radio interface in
cleartext, this step should be avoided whenever possible.

The HSS responds to the user authentication request by returning an EPS


authentication vector to the MME, including the information RAND, AUTN, XRES,
and the ASME key.

Next, the MME sends the random challenge (RAND) and authentication token
(AUTN) to the UE. The UE uses this information both to authenticate the network and
to calculate a response (RES) which is returned to the MME.

Using the same algorithm and input parameters as in the UE, the HSS previously
calculated the expected response (XRES) and sent this value to the MME in the
authentication vector. The MME checks that RES = XRES, in which case the UE is
successfully authenticated. As a result, the Non Access Stratum signalling can be
secured, the eNodeB key can be calculated and sent to the eNodeB, and the radio
interface signalling and user data traffic can be secured.

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5.5 Confidentiality and Integrity Protection

LTE provides both confidentiality and integrity protection for the signalling traffic
between the UE and the MME. Confidentiality protection means ciphering or
encrypting the signalling messages. Integrity protection means ensuring that the
content of the signalling messages has not been altered during the transport.

Over the radio interface the traffic is secured using Packet Data Convergence
Protocol (PDCP). In the control plane, PDCP offers both encryption and integrity
protection for the RRC signalling messages carried within the PDCP packet payload.
In the user plane, PDCP only performs encryption of the user data, but not integrity
protection.

As a consequence of the widespread encryption in the control plane, tracing is no


longer possible with an external protocol analyser, if the network entity does not have
a dedicated unciphered trace port.

Protection of the network-internal interfaces, for instance the S1 interface, is optional.

Two sets of security algorithms were developed for LTE networks: one set is based
on Advanced Encryption Standard (AES) and the other set is based on SNOW 3G.
SNOW is a stream cipher developed at Lund University. The principle being adopted
is that the two sets of algorithms are as different from each other as possible, to
prevent attacks from compromising both at the same time. The ETSI Security
Algorithms Group of Experts (SAGE) is responsible for specifying the algorithms. The
foreseen key length is 128 bits, with the possibility to introduce 256-bit keys in the
future if necessary.

In release 50, the ZUC algorithm is added to the previously described security
algorithms. The ZUC algorithm provides a key length of 32-bit words, but it takes a
128-bit key and a 128-bit vector as input.

The Flexi Multiradio BTS uses the 128-EEA3 algorithm to support the ZUC
algorithm. For integrity protection the 128-EIA3 algorithm is used.

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5.6 Exercise

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5.7 Lawful Interception

Closely related to security is a concept called lawful interception (LI), which is a


mandatory regulatory requirement in many countries.

Lawful interception allows the operator to intercept user data flows in the PDN
Gateway and produce interception related information (IRI) and content of
communication (CC) data required by the authorities. It is possible to intercept IRI
and CC data simultaneously on a case-by-case basis, using the international mobile
subscriber identity (IMSI) or the mobile subscriber international ISDN number
(MSISDN) for identifying the user data flow. The NSN PDN Gateway enables the
interception of 1 % of all active user data flows simultaneously.

The lawful interception implementation in the PDN Gateway is based on the NSN
Lawful Interception Gateway (LIG) solution. The local lawful interception extension
(LIE) functionality in the PDN Gateway acts according to LIG instructions, performs
the actual interception, and sends the intercepted data to the Lawful Interception
Gateway.

5.8 LTE Firewall Support

A Flexi Multiradio BTS based eNodeB includes in-host firewall or packet filtering
functionality in order to protect against potential attacks over IP interfaces. The

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firewall examines all packets to see if they meet certain criteria. If they do, the
packets are accepted; otherwise they are discarded.

The firewall filters IP packets based on their source and destination addresses and
port numbers. The firewall blocks network-level attacks such as denial-of-service
(DoS), oversized-packet, SYN flooding and fragmentation attacks. The
implementation is fully software-based. Fixed, non-configurable filtering rules are
applied to the IP traffic. These rules are created automatically, based on the
configuration, and are permanently active.

Furthermore, the rate of Internet Control Message Protocol (ICMP) messages is


limited to protect against denial-of-service attacks using faked ICMP messages.

It is possible, via the BTS Site Manager or via NetAct Configurator, to enable and
disable the Flexi Multiradio BTS to respond to "ping" and "traceroute” requests.

5.9 LTE Certificate Management

LTE release RL10 introduces the support of Flexi Multiradio BTS certificate
management.

Certificate management is part of the NSN Identity Management (IDM) system, or


part of a 3rd party public key infrastructure (PKI) solution, and is required for handling
private and public keys as well as digital certificates in X.509v3 format.

A certificate is basically a document that contains, along with the public key of the
sender, the name of an independent and trusted third party, called certification
authority, as well as the digital signature of this certification authority to ensure the

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validity of the transmitted information. The format of an X.509 certificate is based on


ITU-T recommendation X.509.

Certificates are primarily used for establishing mutual authentication between IPsec
peers as well as between TLS protocol peers.

5.10 LTE User Account Management

The LTE release RL10 introduces centralised user account management for the Flexi
Multiradio BTS, and also enables the mass updating of local user passwords.

Centralised user account management means that the system administrator is able
to manage, via NetAct, user access to any Flexi Multiradio BTS.

In the login phase, the network checks the user’s access rights by querying a
Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) server providing the authentication
and authorisation information. The access rights can be managed separately for
individual users or for user groups. The operator can define different access classes
with specific access rights for different user groups on a per-BTS basis.

Security alarms are raised if a user attempts to access a Flexi Multiradio BTS using
wrong credentials.

Updating the local user account passwords in the network elements is a time-
consuming operation, which needs to be performed frequently. The mass updating
functionality - performed remotely from NetAct - helps keeping the local passwords
up-to-date.

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5.11 LTE User Event Log Management

The LTE release RL10 also enables the auditing of user actions in the Flexi
Multiradio BTS and provides fast means to start corrective actions in order to prevent
possible damages to the configuration. Consequently, the security of the system is
increased.

The operator is able to trace all changes in all eNodeBs in a centralised fashion,
using the NetAct "Audit Trail" tool.

The uploading of the event log files from the Flexi Multiradio BTS is triggered from
NetAct. The event log files are in XML file format and are transmitted over a secure
connection using Secure File Transfer Protocol (SFTP).

NetAct also provides tools for processing the collected log files. The log files can also
be made available for 3rd party applications.

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5.12 LTE IPsec Support

From LTE release RL10 onwards, IPsec security solutions can be utilised for
securing the following types of IP traffic originating or terminating in the Flexi
Multiradio BTS:

•User plane traffic between the eNodeB and the Serving Gateway or another eNodeB

•Control plane traffic between the eNodeB and the Mobility Management Entity or
another eNodeB

•Management traffic between the eNodeB and, for instance, NetAct.

Using IPsec-based Virtual Private Networks (VPNs), the user plane traffic, control
plane traffic and management traffic can be separated from each other, and from any
other operator's IP traffic if part of the transport network is shared. The separation
ensures that denial-of -service attacks in the user plane, for instance, does not affect
the operation in the control plane or management network.

It is possible to configure the security settings for each IPsec connection


independently.

The supported IPsec capabilities follow 3GPP recommendation TS 33.210, TS


33.401 and TR 33.821. Since the IPsec standards include a large number of
selectable security parameter options, 3GPP has recommended to cut down on the
number of these options in order to guarantee interoperability between different
security domains. Use your mouse pointer to see a list of supported IPsec
capabilities.

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5.13 LTE O&M Transport Security

From LTE release RL10 onwards, the O&M data traffic between the Flexi Multiradio
BTS and the BTS Site Manager, NetAct, or a 3rd party network management system
is secured using the Transport Layer Security (TLS) protocol. This results in CAPEX
savings, since there is no need for any external hardware for achieving secure data
transport.

TLS provides server authentication, encryption, and integrity protection, and secures
both HTTP and LDAP traffic.

The Lightweight Directory Access Protocol (LDAP) is primarily employed for


retrieving usernames and passwords from LDAP servers, as part of the remote user
information management (RUIM) functionality. Usernames and passwords should
never be sent in plaintext, so LDAP traffic should be carried over TLS.

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Note that TLS can be used together with IPsec; that is, it is possible to run TLS within
an IPsec tunnel.

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5.14 Certificate Management for iOMS

From LTE release RL40 onwards certificate management is provided for the
Operation and Management Server (OMS) or the more recent integrated Operation
Mediation System (iOMS) solution. This supports the life cycle management of the
operator certificate and trust anchor (that is, the self-signed certificate of the root
certificate authority) included in the OMS/iOMS.

Certificate management is needed during the enrolment of the operator certificate


when a public key infrastructure (PKI) is used for network node authentication.

The operator certificate is used for mutual authentication between the OMS/iOMS
and a Flexi Multiradio BTS or NetAct during the establishment of a Transport Layer
Security (TLS) or HyperText Transfer Protocol Secure (HTTPS) connection.

The iOMS supports certificates in X.509v3 format. The operator certificate is either
derived from a certification authority (CA), or is included in the iOMS set-up
configuration. In the first mentioned case, the operator certificate management is
based on Certificate Management Protocol version 2 (CMPv2).

In release 50, a couple of features were introduced to increase the security in the
network and to make the certificate management process more efficient.

More details on the multi-layered certificate management concept can be found in the
“Hierarchical Certificate Management” lesson.

Use your pointer to investigate the certificate enrolment procedure, as well as some
other certificate management procedures and related issues.

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5.15 Crypto Agent

From LTE release RL40 onwards, the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports the crypto agent
functionality.

This means that each Flexi Multiradio BTS hardware module contains a personal
secure environment (PSE) for storing private keys, passwords, sensitive files, etc.,
and for executing sensitive tasks such as key creation, data encryption and
decryption. Such a personal secure environment is based either on a software
solution or a hardware solution - using a Trusted Platform Module (TPM) security
device.

The corresponding software solution, used in the Flexi Multiradio BTS, involves as
central entity the crypto agent (CRA). The crypto agent makes use of the OpenSSL
suite and provides its services via a common application programming interface to
the applications. This concept ensures that private keys never leave the crypto agent
in unencrypted form. Moreover, all operations involving private keys are performed
by the crypto agent. Let our tutor shortly explain the role of private and public keys.

The crypto agent also provides a secure file storage service, where the file content is
encoded and decoded by the crypto agent, and the files are stored only in encrypted
form within the file system.

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5.16 SW Verification Agent

From LTE release RL40 onwards, Flexi Multiradio 10 BTS modules provide secure
booting. Only integrity checked code is accepted for activation. This significantly
enhances risk management.

The secure boot process enforces verification and execution of trusted software in a
predefined sequential order. It guarantees that a system boots only into a specific
state. Software verification agents ensure that no malicious code can be inserted.

During the production phase of the hardware module, private and public keys are
created and securely stored within read-only memory. Furthermore, boot load
software, boot software, kernel software and application software are initially hashed,
and the hash values are encrypted with the private key and stored in non-volatile
memory.

During the boot process, the verification agent calculates the hash value of the boot
software, and decrypts the stored hash value with the help of the public key of the
module. If the hash pairs match, the boot continues since there was no integrity
violation. In this way the boot software, kernel software and application software are
checked before being taken into use.

Software updates are handled in a similar way. The software updates are
downloaded via a secure channel, and hash values are calculated, encrypted, and
securely stored. During software activation, at a later point in time, the software
verification process takes place as illustrated in the animation.

Failures are logged and if online connectivity is available a security alarm is sent to
the Network Management System.

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5.17 Local Link Layer Security

Starting with LTE release RL40, the serial communication of the RapidIO bus
between Flexi Multiradio 10 BTS modules is authenticated and ciphered. The
improved Flexi Multiradio software and hardware security significantly enhances risk
management.

In the Flexi Multiradio 10 BTS, hardware modules (such as FSMF, FSMG, FBBA and
FBBB) provide serial RapidIO (sRIO) ports on the front panel. These can be used, for
instance, to connect extension sub-modules to the core module.

The sRIO bus ports provide direct access to memory and allow the configuration of
sRIO chips. To protect these interfaces, module authentication and link layer
encryption is provided. The confidentiality of the data sent via the serial RapidIO bus
is protected by a crypto unit that is embedded in the sRIO chip sets.

The link layer security is closely connected to the sRIO transport layer and sRIO
physical layer. First, an sRIO transport header is added to the payload. Then, the
payload and the header are encrypted.

The encryption algorithm, AES128-CTR, is the same as specified by 3GPP for air-
link encryption. This algorithm is hard coded inside the sRIO chips and cannot be
changed. It is only used for BTS-internal transport security purposes.

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5.18 Hierarchical Certificate Management

The multi-layered certificate authorities feature allows better certificate management


of the flexi Multiradio BTS because it permits the operator to integrate NSN identity
management (IDM) system as sub-ordinate certificate authority into its existing public
key infrastructure (PKI).

At first a “Chain of Trust” is formed by validating each element from the flexi
multiradio BTS to the signed root CA certificate.

If a trust chain has been established then “eNodeB Operator certificate and trust
anchor enrolment” occurs by storing trusted anchors delivered via CMP protocol
exchange from the Registration Authority/Certificate Authority or manually via the
BTS Site Manager in a pool of valid certificates.

However, if some remote peers had their certificate cancelled, i.e. not trusted, then a
certificate revocation list (CRL) is produced by the BTS entity certificate. This is
called “Certificate revocation”.

Moreover, the Flexi Multimode BTS renews its operator certificate automatically
before the lifetime expires. This is related to the “Operator certificate and trust anchor
life cycle management” functional property.

Finally, the common rules for managing operator eNodeB certificates follow the
3GPP Release 9 TS 33.310 standard.

Please move your pointer over the following Hierarchical Certificate Authorities main
functional properties boxes to get more details.

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6 QoS Solutions

6.1 Introduction

The class-based Quality of Service (QoS) concept specified for LTE networks in
3GPP Release 8 provides network operators with effective techniques to enable
service or subscriber differentiation at the application level, and to maintain the
required QoS level across the end-to-end system.

We start our QoS investigation by describing some important concepts such as EPS
bearer and packet flow.

On the following pages, the EPS QoS profile structure is explained, and it is shown
what QoS control means in practice at the bearer level, at the transport level and at
the air interface.

Next, a concept called policy and charging control (PCC) will be introduced. The PCC
framework specified in 3GPP Release 7 is closely related to QoS management and
provides operators with advanced tools for service-aware QoS and charging control.

Finally, QoS management as a process is illustrated using a signalling flow chart


example.

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6.2 EPS Bearer Concept

In the Evolved Packet System, basic entities called EPS bearers are employed for
carrying the user data between the UE and the PDN Gateway, or as another option
between the UE and the Serving Gateway.

In the first option, the GTP tunnel associated with the bearer extends between the
eNodeB and the PDN Gateway. In the second option, the GTP tunnel extends to the
Serving Gateway only. Over the S5/S8 interface the IETF Proxy Mobile IP (PMIP)
solution is used instead for carrying the user data traffic.

Each EPS bearer can handle one or more packet flows or, in official terms, service
data flows. A packet flow is defined by the quintuple of source and destination IP
address, source and destination layer 4 port, and the layer 4 protocol used (TCP,
UDP, or SCTP). All packet flows belonging to a certain EPS bearer are associated
with a certain bearer-level Quality of Service (QoS) profile. Thus, packet flows with
different bearer-level QoS requirements must be carried by different EPS bearers.

When a UE connects to a packet data network (PDN), a so-called default bearer is


permanently established for the lifetime of the PDN connection to provide always-on
IP connectivity with that PDN. Additional dedicated EPS bearers may be allocated for
the transport of user data traffic with different bearer-level QoS requirements.

Let us next examine the QoS profile structure in LTE.

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6.3 EPS QoS Profile Structure

In 3G, the QoS profile structure is rather complicated, with a large number of
parameters and possible value combinations.

The Evolved Packet System uses instead a single QoS class identifier (QCI). Nine
QCI values have been defined in 3GPP technical specification 23.203. You can
examine the QoS attributes mapped to these QCI values with your mouse pointer.

The Allocation and Retention Priority (ARP) can be used by the network to decide
whether a certain bearer can be established or must be rejected in case of resource
limitations, or to decide which bearers are dropped in case of exceptional resource
limitations, for instance during a handover. This QoS parameter, however, does not
affect the packet forwarding in the network.

Regarding bit rate limitations, there are two types of bearers: Guaranteed bit rate
(GBR) and non-guaranteed bit rate (non-GBR) bearers.

For GBR bearers, a maximum bit rate and a guaranteed bit rate are defined for both
uplink and downlink traffic. Guaranteed bit rate means that the network makes sure
that congestion-related packet drops will not occur as long as the bit rate remains
below this value. In 3GPP Release 8, the guaranteed bit rate is always equal to the
maximum bit rate.

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For non-GBR bearers, the aggregate maximum bit rate (AMBR) of the aggregate
packet flows is defined instead for the uplink and downlink traffic. Note that the
default EPS bearer is always a non-GBR bearer.

6.4 QoS Control in the EPS

QoS control in the Evolved Packet System can be implemented in various network
nodes at several levels.

At the EPS bearer level, QoS control takes place in the PDN Gateway and the
eNodeB. In the case of non-GBR bearers, separate downlink and uplink aggregate
maximum bit rate values are used for traffic flow enforcement in the PDN Gateway
and in the eNodeB. In other words, the QoS profile includes, in total, four AMBR
values. Since packet flows are identified by their quintuple as mentioned earlier, this
information must also be included in the QoS context in the PDN Gateway and
eNodeB.

At the transport level, QoS control is based on mapping the QCI value associated
with the EPS bearer into the six-bit Differentiated Services Code Point (DSCP)
carried in the IP packet header indicating the priority of the packet. The routers in the
IP network take this information into account when routing the packets to their
destination. Packets with high priority experience less delay in the routers. The QCI-
to-DSCP mapping is performed in the PDN Gateway for downlink traffic and in the
eNodeB for uplink traffic. The mapping tables are installed to these network nodes by
O&M means.

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QoS control can also be applied at the radio interface. This requires some kind of
mapping between the QoS parameters and the scheduling priority in the eNodeB.
Again, the mapping is controlled by O&M means.

6.5 Rate Capping in UL and DL

The LTE release RL20 introduces a feature called rate capping, that is, restricting the
maximum aggregated non guaranteed bit rate (non-GBR) throughput in both uplink
and downlink directions. The Flexi Multiradio BTS uses the QoS attribute UE-
aggregate maximum bit rate (UE-AMBR) for this purpose.

The UE-AMBR values for uplink and downlink are stored in the home subscriber
server (HSS) and are sent to the MME for instance during the attach procedure. The
MME then sends the UE-AMBR values to the eNodeB in the S1-AP message ”initial
context setup request”.

The Flexi Multiradio BTS limits the uplink and downlink bit rate of all non-GBR EPS
bearers allocated to this specific UE according to the UE-AMBR values. The BTS
considers the aggregated throughput as averaged over a period of one second.

The operator can enable or disable this new functionality on a per-cell basis by using
O&M.

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6.6 Support of UE-AMBR Modification

The LTE release RL20 allows the QoS attribute UE-AMBR (aggregate maximum bit
rate) to be modified by the MME.

The initial assigned value of UE-AMBR can be changed, that is, increased or
decreased by the MME. The Flexi Multiradio BTS supports the following S1-AP
messages for this purpose:

 UE context modification request

 UE context modification response

 UE context modification failure.

This new functionality can be enabled or disabled by using O&M.

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6.7 Support of Multiple EPS Bearers

The LTE release RL20 supports up to four EPS bearers per mobile device.
Previously, only a single default EPS bearer was available for data transport.

EPS bearers are associated with a certain bearer-level QoS profile. Thus, all traffic
sent over a certain EPS bearer will receive the same QoS treatment. This is the main
reason why multiple EPS bearers are needed.

In order to be able to benefit from this functionality, mobile devices must also be
capable of supporting multiple bearers.

Regarding the radio bearer part of the EPS bearer, you can use your mouse pointer
to see which radio bearer combinations are supported by the Flexi Multiradio BTS
per mobile device.

The different EPS bearers may or may not have the same QoS class identifier (QCI)
value. The downlink scheduler in the eNodeB provides prioritisation among multiple
non-GBR EPS bearers in order to avoid starvation of the downlink traffic.

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6.8 Multiple GBR EPS Bearers per UE

From LTE release RL40 onwards the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports up to three
guaranteed bit rate (GBR) EPS radio bearers per UE. Up to six data radio bearers
(DRBs) can be established per UE. As a result, operators are able to offer additional
service combinations.

Multiple data radio bearers can be either multiple default EPS bearers or a
combination of default and dedicated EPS bearers. In downlink, the BTS controls the
target delay for the guaranteed bit rate EPS bearers individually. In uplink, the target
delay is controlled per logical channel group to which the guaranteed bit rate EPS
bearer is mapped statically. The Flexi Multiradio BTS provides checks for the total
number of data radio bearers per cell, the maximum number of data radio bearers
per UE and the bearer combination per UE.

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The Flexi Multiradio BTS supports the following scenarios for establishing and
releasing EPS bearers:

 establish individual EPS bearers

 release individual EPS bearers

 add multiple EPS bearers to a set of existing EPS bearers

 release multiple EPS bearers from a set of existing EPS bearers.

The various EPS bearers per UE can have the same or a different QoS class
identifier (QCI). Intra-LTE handovers must include all EPS bearers – otherwise the
handover cannot be performed.

The functionality described above can be enabled or disabled on a per-BTS basis via
O&M means.

6.9 EPS Bearers for Conversational Voice

The LTE release RL20 allows the introduction of high-quality operator-managed


voice services in LTE by introducing guaranteed bit rates (GBR) in LTE. This is
necessary to enable voice call related features such as CS fallback and single radio
voice call continuity (SRVCC).

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The Flexi Multiradio BTS supports EPS bearers with the QoS class identifier (QCI)
equal to one for voice services. Naturally, in order to be able to benefit from this
functionality, mobile devices must also be capable of supporting this QoS class.

The Flexi Multiradio BTS takes the QoS information received from the MME into
account when assigning radio resources. The uplink and downlink schedulers use
the GBR delay budget for their scheduling decisions. The delay budget can be
configured by the operator. Non-GBR data transmission might be reduced in order to
achieve the GBR performance for voice users. Dynamic scheduling is applied to EPS
bearers with QCI equal to one.

The support of EPS bearers with QCI equal to one can be enabled or disabled on a
per-eNodeB basis by means of O&M.

6.10 Service Differentiation for Non-GBR EPS Bearer

The LTE release RL20 also enables service differentiation as applied to non
guaranteed bit rate (non-GBR) EPS bearers. These EPS bearers are covered by the
QoS classes five to nine.

The Flexi Multiradio BTS assigns relative scheduling weights for each non-GBR QCI
class on a per-cell basis. The relative weights are taken into account by the uplink
and downlink scheduler in the BTS when scheduling the traffic over the radio
interface.

Furthermore, the service differentiation functionality allows one to define three


different Radio Link Control (RLC) or Packet Data Convergence Protocol (PDCP)
profiles per BTS. These profiles can be assigned to different QoS classes.

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The operator can enable or disable the support of individual QoS classes.

6.11 Operator specific QCI

In LTE release RL30, the operator can define up to 21 additional QCIs (QoS Class
Identifiers) for EPS bearers that have non-guaranteed bit-rates.

The benefit is that the operator can more easily differentiate users and services in
order to receive different levels of service. One example could be silver, gold, and
platinum service levels.

In a multi-operator use case, the operator-specific QCIs can naturally separate the
traffic of the operators by different QCI values.

The QCI value is configurable in the range from 128 to 254. And each QCI is defined
by various parameters.

The Flexi Multiradio BTS supports up to three QCI groups to combine QCI related
performance counters. Also, standard QCIs can be grouped together with operator-
specific QCIs.

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6.12 Support of QCI 2, 3 and 4

From LTE release RL40 onwards the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports QoS classes two,
three, and four. These QoS classes belong to the guaranteed bit rate (GBR) bearer
type category. Thus, the operator is able to offer GBR services like gaming or
streaming.

The MME decides the GBR values to be used in downlink and uplink, and sends this
information to the Flexi Multiradio BTS, typically in an “E-RAB Setup Request”
message. The BTS takes these values into account when making radio resource
management decisions. The maximum accepted GBR values for each QoS class are
operator configurable, for instance 2 Mbit/s in downlink and 512 kbit/s in uplink.

Note that the same GBR admission control thresholds are applied as for EPS
bearers with QoS class identifier (QCI) = 1.

Dynamic scheduling is applied to EPS bearers with QCI value 2, 3, or 4. The


scheduling priority is used in case of congestion in order to prioritise different EPS
bearers. Non-GBR data transmission might be reduced in order to achieve the
guaranteed bit rate.

The support of individual QoS classes as well as the complete functionality can be
enabled or disabled on a per-BTS basis via O&M means.

The feature is enabled together with the RL40 features “Smart Admission Control”
and “ARP Based Admission Control for E-RABs”.
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Each QoS class is defined by a set of operator configurable parameters.

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6.13 Smart Admission Control

From LTE release RL40 onwards the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports smart admission
control that extends the fixed-threshold-based radio admission control for guaranteed
bit rate (GBR) EPS bearers and introduces a congestion supervision mechanism at
the radio interface.

Smart admission control enhances the resource utilisation of the BTS and keeps the
radio interface in a healthy state during congestion.

The radio admission control entity checks the downlink and uplink resource situation
on the Physical Downlink and Uplink Shared Channels, respectively, before deciding
on the admission of new GBR bearers.

The transport admission control entity estimates the transmission rates of new QoS
class 2, 3 or 4 bearers to be admitted to the network.

During congestion the BTS triggers the release of GBR bearers, taking into account
the allocation and retention priority (ARP) of each bearer.

The ARP value together with the QCI priority might also be used for scheduling GBR
bearers in order to align the scheduling and bearer drop behavior during congestion.

Smart admission control can be enabled or disabled on a per-BTS basis via O&M
means.

This feature is enabled together with the RL40 features “Support of QCI 2, 3 and 4”
and “ARP Based Admission Control for E-RABs”.

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6.14 ARP Based Admission Control for E-RABs

Starting from LTE release RL40, the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports allocation and
retention priority (ARP) handling during the admission control of guaranteed bit rate
(GBR) and non-GBR EPS bearers.

When performing admission control during bearer establishment or handover


operations, the following ARP parameters are considered:

 priority level

 pre-emption capability

 pre-emption vulnerability.

During admission control the BTS first checks the radio resources. If admission of the
new resource is not possible without pre-empting existing resources, and the pre-
emption capability of the new resource has the value “may trigger pre-emption”, the
BTS automatically triggers the release of existing lower-priority pre-emptable
resources.

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EPS bearers of emergency sessions are usually handled in a similar way, that is,
they are prioritised according to their ARP parameter values.

ARP based admission control can be enabled or disabled on a per-BTS basis via
O&M means.

Note that this feature is enabled together with the RL40 features “Support of QCI 2, 3
and 4” and “Smart Admission Control”.

6.15 E-RAB Modification

From LTE release RL40 onwards the operator can change the following parameters
of EPS bearers:

 QoS class identifier (QCI) value of a non-guaranteed bit rate EPS bearer

 Allocation and retention priority (ARP) value

 Aggregate maximum bit rate (AMBR) of the UE.

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In other words, the operator has the possibility to change the QoS profile of EPS
bearers dynamically.

The QCI of EPS bearers with QCI value equal to five cannot be changed if this
bearer is used for signalling. Furthermore, ARP changes to emergency calls are
rejected.

6.16 Policy and Charging Control

Closely related to QoS control is a concept called policy and charging control (PCC).
The PCC framework provides operators with advanced tools for service-aware or
dynamic QoS and charging control. The basic policy and charging control structure of
the 3GPP packet-switched domain is defined in 3GPP Release 7 TS 23.203. LTE-
specific enhancements were added in TS 23.401 and TS 23.402 in 3GPP Release 8.

In the PCC context, “policy” means making real-time decisions regarding access to
services or allocation and use of network resources.

The PCC concept is based on PCC rules. Using relevant information received from
the application function and the subscription profile repository, the Policy and
Charging Rules Function (PCRF) generates or selects dynamic PCC rules on a per-
packet flow and per-session basis.

The PCC rules are then forwarded to the Policy and Charging Enforcement Function
(PCEF) in the PDN Gateway, which ensures that the rules are enforced during the
packet flow. It is also possible to install predefined or static PCC rules directly to the
PCEF by O&M means without involving the PCRF.

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Let our tutor tell you more about the role of policy and charging control. You can also
move your mouse pointer over the items in the figure for a short explanation of each
item.

The subscription profile repository (SPR) is where the subscriber profile (with QoS
and charging-related information) is permanently stored - in a 3GPP network this is
usually the home subscriber server (HSS).

The Policy and Charging Rules Function (PCRF) generates or selects PCC rules on
a per-packet flow and per-session basis.

The application function (AF) interacts with the application that requires dynamic
policy and charging control, and provides relevant information to the PCRF.

The Gx and Gy interfaces are based on the IETF Diameter Credit-Control Application
(DCCA) protocol.

The Policy and Charging Enforcement Function (PCEF) ensures that the PCC rules
received from the PCRF are enforced during the packet flow.

The online charging system enables flow-based charging by providing online credit
control.

The offline charging system collects offline charging information and sends it to the
billing domain.

The Gz interface is based on GPRS Tunnelling Protocol (GTP).

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6.17 PCC Signalling during LTE Attach

We have to remember that there are two EPS bearer connectivity options: the GTP
and the IETF option.

In the GTP option, where the GTP tunnel associated with the EPS bearer extends
between the eNodeB and the PDN Gateway, the PCC-related signalling during LTE
attach is as shown in the figure. The Serving Gateway is not involved in policy and
charging control, since the GTP tunnel extends beyond this gateway.

In the IETF option, however, the GTP tunnel extends to the Serving Gateway only.
Over the S5/S8 interface, IETF Proxy Mobile IP (PMIP) signalling is used instead, as
indicated by the blue callouts. Note that the Serving Gateway needs to receive policy
and charging control information from the PCRF in this case, as indicated by the
green callout.

Use your mouse pointer to compare the different PCC signalling sequences

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6.18 QoS Management Example 1

Let us next see how the QoS-related information is distributed in the Evolved Packet
System when the default EPS bearer is established in connection with the LTE attach
procedure.

The QoS profile for the default bearer is stored in the Home Subscriber Server
(HSS). During the attach procedure this information is transferred to the MME.

When activating the default EPS bearer, the MME sends relevant QoS-related
information to the PDN Gateway in the “Create Session Request” message and to
the eNodeB in connection with the “Attach Accept” message. The eNodeB forwards
the “Attach Accept” message and relevant QoS information to the UE using RRC
signalling.

You can examine the QoS information distributed to the various network nodes by
using your mouse pointer.

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6.19 QoS Management Example 2

As a second example, let us assume that a dedicated EPS bearer is being


established for the purpose of carrying VoIP traffic.

Now, the Policy and Charging Rules Function (PCRF) network entity retreives the
necessary QoS-related information from the Home Subscriber Server (HSS) and the
VoIP Application Server, creates the PCC rules using this information, and sends the
PCC rules to the PDN Gateway.

Next, the relevant QoS information is forwarded to the UE.

Finally, the eNodeB indicates whether the dedicated bearer could be allocated or not.

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6.20 Exercise

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6.21 Commercial Mobile Alert System

From LTE release RL40 onwards the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports the Commercial
Mobile Alert System (CMAS) – a solution for broadcasting public warning messages.

The MME sends CMAS notifications to the BTS using the S1AP message “Write-
Replace Warning Request”. Mobile terminals in RRC IDLE or RRC CONNECTED
state are informed, via paging, about the presence of CMAS notifications.

The CMAS notifications are broadcast in system information block (SIB) 12. The
segmentation of warning messages into consecutive system information blocks, and
the autonomous adaptation of the scheduling info list in system information block 1
are also supported.

In the case of S1-flex network configurations, where the Flexi Multiradio BTS can be
connected to several MMEs, the BTS may receive the same CMAS notification from
multiple MMEs.

The BTS stops the broadcasting of notifications by using the “Kill Request” message
or after the maximum number of required notifications have been broadcast.

The CMAS functionality can be enabled or disabled on a per-BTS basis via O&M
means.

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6.22 ETWS Broadcast

From LTE release RL40 onwards the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports Earthquake and
Tsunami Warning System (ETWS) warning delivery, under the control of the Mobility
Management Entity (MME).

The following notification actions are supported:

 Broadcasting of a primary notification that alerts communities of an impending


earthquake or tsunami

 Broadcasting of secondary notifications for delivering additional information,


like where to get help

 Stopping the delivery of notifications.

In the case of S1-flex network configurations, where the Flexi Multiradio BTS can be
connected to several MMEs, the BTS may receive each warning message item from
multiple MMEs.

The primary notification is broadcast as soon as possible to all camping and


connected UEs under the coverage of the BTS, by using repeated paging in all
paging groups. The notification is broadcast in system information block (SIB) 10.

The secondary notification is broadcast in a segmented manner in system


information block 11, in line with 3GPP specifications.

Note that the warning delivery is prioritised if there is congestion in the network.

The ETWS broadcast functionality can be enabled or disabled on a per-BTS basis


via O&M means.

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7 LTE Charging Architecture


In a telecommunications network, charging is the function whereby information
related to a chargeable event is collected, formatted, transferred and evaluated in
order to make it possible to bill the charged party at a later time (offline charging) or
to interact with the charged service in real time (online charging).

In offline charging, the charging information does not affect, in real-time, the service
being charged.

In online charging, the charging information can affect, in real-time, the service being
charged. Therefore a direct interaction of the charging mechanism with bearer,
session or service control is required. This is where the Policy and Charging
Enforcement Function (PCEF) plays a certain role.

7.1 Offline Charging

In offline charging, the charging information does not affect, in real-time, the service
being charged. The charging information is transferred from the network to the billing
domain (BD) after the resource usage has occurred. In the billing domain, the
charging information is processed for billing purposes.

In the PDN Gateway, the charging trigger function (CTF) detects chargeable events,
such as bearer resource usage, and transforms each chargeable event into a
charging event.

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From the received charging events, the charging data function (CDF) produces
charging data records (CDRs) with a specified format. The CDRs are transferred to
number of CDRs and forwards the file to the billing domain.

Move your mouse pointer over the charging interfaces (Rf, Ga, Bp) to see where
these interfaces are defined.

The Evolved Packet Core charging architecture is flexible and allows the
implementation of different charging functions (CTF, CDF and CGF) in the same
physical network element.

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7.2 Online Charging

In online charging, the charging information may affect, in real-time, the service being
charged. The charging information is transferred from the PDN Gateway to the online
charging system (OCS) which performs real-time credit control.

In the PDN Gateway, the charging trigger function (CTF) detects chargeable events,
such as bearer resource usage, and transforms each chargeable event into a
charging event.

The charging events are forwarded to the online charging function (OCF) in order to
check whether the network resources can still be used. The online charging function
interacts with the account balance management function (ABMF) that stores and
updates the number of credits on the user account, and the rating function (RF) that
determines the cost of service usage according to tariffs. If the balance goes too low
or the user runs out of credits, the online charging system may interrupt or terminate
the service.

The Gy interface between the Policy and Charging Enforcement Function (PCEF)
and the online charging system is defined in 3GPP Technical Specification 23.203.
The signalling is based on the IETF Diameter Credit Control Application (DCCA)
framework as defined in RFC 4006.

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8 Location Solutions

8.1 Support of Cell Based Location Service

In LTE release RL30, the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports location reporting of a mobile
device to the MME on a cell ID level.

The benefit of being able to locate a mobile device is to support mandatory regulatory
services such as emergency calls and lawful interception requirements.

The location reporting can be triggered either directly or by a change of serving-cell.

Direct location reporting is triggered by a location report request from the MME. The
Flexi Multiradio BTS then returns the global cell ID that the requested mobile device
is in at that moment.

Change of serving-cell based reporting is triggered either by the

 S1AP location report request message from the MME, or

 X2AP handover request message during a handover, or

 S1AP handover request message

Also, each internal cell change in Flexi BTS of a mobile device in the ECM-
CONNECTED state is reported to the MME.

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8.2 OTDOA

Starting from LTE release RL40, the Flexi Multiradio BTS supports the positioning
method Observed Time Difference of Arrival (OTDOA).

This positioning method provides greater location accuracy than cell ID based
positioning. Consequently, the operator is able to provide location services with
better accuracy in those situations where GPS is not working.

In OTDOA the UE performs measurements on the downlink signals received from


several cells, and the evolved Serving Mobile Location Center (eSMLC) calculates
the UE position by using this information. Additional positioning reference symbols
(PRS) are inserted in the downlink signal in order to increase the signal hearability for
the OTDOA measurements. Note that a number of PRS-related parameters are
operator configurable, as shown in the figure. The additional positioning reference
symbols and the muting configuration may lead to decreased downlink performance.

The UE and the eSMLC communicate directly by using the LTE Positioning Protocol
(LPP). This signalling is transparent to the BTS.

OTDOA can be enabled or disabled on a per-BTS basis via O&M means.

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9 Subscriber Data Management

9.1 Subscriber Data Management

In subscriber data management the current trend is towards subscriber-centric


networks and a converged subscription database solution - that is, one common
database instead of separate databases for each type of network.

The subsriber data management solution should also take into account that
subscriber data is increasingly “dynamic”; it is constantly updated as the subscriber
interacts with services, manages subscriptions and changes between environments.

Furthermore, the prediction of customer needs is important. It is necessary to spot,


analyse and act on events as they happen.

Operators also see identity management and the managing of multiple subscriber
identities as a key issue. Network-agnostic identity management is the key
component of tomorrow’s multi-access multi-service network.

As a final observation, operators see access and authentication data as obstacles to


providing seamless services between different access networks.

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10 Network Management

10.1 Overview

NetAct is a network and service management framework that specifically addresses


operators’ challenges in the following way when deploying LTE networks:

The NetAct Operations Support System (OSS) framework provides sophisticated and
field tested applications for LTE management, such as Traffica, Configurator and
Optimizer. As a new approach, key operational processes will be extensively
automated using self-organising network (SON) solutions. This will lead to improved
visibility to network quality and end user behavior.

The high level of automation will also result in OPEX savings since fewer people are
needed for network planning and for operation and maintenance (O&M) activity. Also,
the higher service availability and increased end-user-quality-of experience provides
the potential to increase revenues.

As far as evolution aspects are concerned, NetAct customers can manage LTE
networks from day one using familiar applications. The NetAct framework is field-
proven and supports multi-vendor integration.

Last but not least, NetAct allows network operators to manage multi-technology and
multi-vendor networks seamlessly using a single network management system

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10.2 Self-Organising Network (SON) Solutions

Due to the large number of network parameters and the expanding number of
eNodeB nodes, it is necessary to increase the degree of automation during the roll-
out and operation of LTE networks in order to decrease operational expenditures.
This observation resulted in the following self-organising network solutions:

Self-configuration effectively means “plug and play” behavior when installing network
elements in order to reduce costs and simplify the installation procedure.

Self-optimisation means automatic parameter optimisation based on network


monitoring and measurement data obtained from various network nodes and
terminals.

Self-healing means that the system detects problems itself and mitigates or solves
these problems to avoid unnecessary user participation and to significantly reduce
maintenance costs.

You can learn more details by using your mouse pointer.

Note that regardless the degree of automation, the operator will always be the final
control instance.

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10.3 Hybrid SON Concept

NSN is developing a hybrid solution where some of the self-organising functions and
algorithms are executed at the NetAct application level while others are done in the
eNodeBs. The task division is roughly as follows:

 Simple, short-term optimisation tasks are performed autonomously in the


eNodeBs

 Complex, mid- and long-term optimisation tasks are performed by the network
operator using NetAct Optimizer.

The optimisation framework is flexible; various scenarios will be supported.

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10.4 PRACH management

The LTE release RL30 introduces an automatic configuration of settings of Physical


Random Access Channel (PRACH).

The benefit for the operator is that less effort is required in setting and optimizing
PRACH parameters in the O&M system.

NetAct Optimizer automatically assigns the following PRACH parameters:

 cyclic shift

 configuration index

 frequency offset

 root sequence

The algorithm uses different information as an input.

This feature is embedded in a framework called "self-organizing network (SON) LTE


BTS auto-configuration“. The framework provides automated configuration of Flexi
Multiradio BTSs via NetAct. More information can be found in the course "NetAct for
LTE".

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10.5 Automatic interface alarm correlation

In LTE release RL30, the automatic interface alarm correlation feature minimizes the
number of alarms that are raised in case of a connection loss in a central interface or
node.

Depending on the failed connection or node, a single failure can cause, in a worst
case, 2000, or even more, alarm events which need to be acknowledged by the
operator in NetAct.

In the flat architecture of the LTE, it is more important to aggregate alarms than in
legacy systems, because there are many more common interfaces like S1 and X2
that can cause many alarms.

By using alarm correlation instead of hundreds or thousands of alarms, only one


dedicated alarm is sent to the operator in a case of interface problems.

The solution consists of:

 The Flexi Multiradio BTS providing correlation information in the alarm


message, and

 NetAct providing the basic correlation rules for appropriate LTE alarms.

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Whenever more than a configurable number of alarms with the same correlation
information is received, then NetAct suppresses the original alarms and triggers a
new common alarm for all the failures targeted to this type of object.

10.6 LTE Timing Advance Evaluation

In LTE release RL30, the timing advance measurements can be used by the operator
for network planning and optimization tasks.

With the introduction of timing advance measurements the operator is able:

 to locate areas in the cell with high and low traffic volumes

 to plot a generic geographic user distribution in the cell, and

 to obtain dropped call statistics to find areas with a high drop rate

These are possible within the limited scope and accuracy of timing advance
measurements. Timing advance alone is not accurate enough to provide location-
based services.

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10.7 Configurable cell trace content

In LTE release RL30, the operator is able to filter cell traces on a message level.

The operator can choose which messages will be taken into the trace record. It could
mean that only the handover messages are recorded. The trace depth is based on
the maximum trace depth setting and the trace content can be reduced with this
feature. The feature is a configurable alternative to the standard 3GPP-defined trace
depths.

The configuration of trace content is based on a simple input format with specific
markings of the messages which are collected for the trace record. These settings
will be stored in a file.

For each trace configuration in NetAct Trace Viewer, it is possible to apply selected
trace settings individually. This means that either maximum trace depths or a specific
trace profile can be applied. For operator usage, there are some pre-defined
templates for certain use cases.

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11 Configuration Management

11.1 System Upgrade with Backward Compatibility

In LTE release RL30, the system upgrade with backward compatibility enables a
smooth upgrade from a major software release to the next release in the overall
network. This includes upgrading the following elements:

 Flexi Multiradio BTS

 NetAct with all LTE relevant applications including Optimizer, Trace Viewer, the
Northbound interfaces, and the iOMS

The upgrade is done remotely and requires very little manual intervention. It supports
the following functionalities:

 One-step software upgrade to the next major version, without intermediate


versions.

 All operator-configured data are maintained in the system, including Flexi


Multiradio BTS configuration, operator specific adaptations in NetAct or BTS
system module, and performance management configuration

 System data is stored and a backup is made; the data includes items such as
measurements, user accounts, and certificates

 scripts are also updated

 NetAct and BTS system module support both releases – the old and the new –
to ensure that a mixed configuration works

 The LTE system-wide upgrade is defined as top-down sequence

 The downtime of a network entity during the upgrade is reduced to the


activation of the new software

 Automatic or manual fallback to the original release if the upgrade fails

 A delta-description lists all differences to the old version

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