The Implications of RAN Architecture Evolution for Transport Networks


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Presented by Andy Sutton, Principal Network Architect, Network Strategy, EE on 25th June 2014 in LTE World Summit 2014

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The Implications of RAN Architecture Evolution for Transport Networks

  1. 1. Andy Sutton Principal Network Architect Network Strategy 25th June 2014 The Implications of RAN Architecture Evolution for Transport Networks
  2. 2. Contents • Review current RAN architecture evolution trends • Specify backhaul requirements to support LTE-A • Consider the transport requirements for evolved D-RAN and new C-RAN solutions • Present EE mobile backhaul strategy and target architecture for a future proof Het-Net 2
  3. 3. RAN and backhaul evolution 1. GSM to GSM/UMTS to GSM/UMTS/LTE 2. Multiple base stations to multi-RAT platforms 3. TDM, ATM and IP Transport Network Layers to all-IP TNL 4. Underlying transmission changes from TDM (PDH/SDH) to Carrier Ethernet 5. Transmission migration supported by PWE3 solutions 6. Denser networks with different site types – macro – micro – pico 7. VoIP and QoS differentiation 3
  4. 4. Current multi-RAT mobile backhaul network architecture 4
  5. 5. RAN architecture evolution trends 1. Increased peak and average speeds 2. Increased capacity 3. Reduced latency 4. Differentiated quality of service 5. Multiple radio access technologies 6. Multi-band operation 7. Increased coordination – scheduling 8. Distributed and/or Cloud RAN 9. Denser networks 10. Heterogeneous networks 11. Self organising/optimising networks 12. Time/phase alignment between cells 5
  6. 6. LTE-Advanced • Carrier Aggregation - n x Component Carriers (CC) - 20+20MHz deployed • Capacity and performance • Heterogeneous Networks (Het-Nets) • Public access small cells - radio functionality, fixed and wireless backhaul • Coordinated Multi-Point Transmission and Reception (CoMP) • Different techniques place different demands on backhaul • Some techniques probably require C-RAN for effective implementation (fronthaul) 6
  7. 7. LTE-Advanced backhaul • Capacity upgrades • Dark fibre, Ethernet Leased Lines, Microwave radio etc. • Enhancing performance - flatten the protocol stack… • Minimising latency and frame/packet delay variation • Minimising frame/packet error loss rates • Flexible QoS to support multi-service • VoLTE timeline aligns with new LTE-A features • New connectivity to support advanced RAN features • Coordinated scheduling - centralised management function • Small cell backhaul - connectivity, performance and integration • Flexibility to optimise traffic flows to support CoMP techniques • Time and timing • Frequency and phase (time of day) sync 7
  8. 8. D-RAN and C-RAN… 8 • Distributed RAN is an evolution of today’s base station architecture with improved coordination and scheduling capabilities • Centralised scheduling • Cloud RAN is a new functional split with centralised baseband (digital unit) coordinating across multiple remote radio units (radio unit) • Introduction of fronthaul segment • Benefits of C-RAN over D-RAN appear to be limited at the moment and therefore don’t justify significant investment in fronthaul • Consider TCO based on circumstances
  9. 9. Target architecture and evolution strategy 9 • Focus on capacity and performance • Short-medium term scalability of Ethernet leased lines and microwave radio systems • Development of Super Macro sites in support of 2G, 3G and 4G national coverage and capacity • Includes CA on macro’s, moving from 2 to 3 CC • Introduction of optimised Het-Nets to enhance capacity and quality of experience • Longer term partnerships with fixed providers who can offer fibre-like performance rather than complex Ethernet leased line products • Introduction of innovative wireless backhaul technologies, new techniques, new bands etc.
  10. 10. Summary 10 • Mobile backhaul evolution is essential to support RAN and product evolution • Higher throughput with improved performance is an enabler for new services • We must decouple any relationship between capacity, cost and performance
  11. 11. THANKYOU
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