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Creating Next-Generation Signaling Gateways With ATCA

Creating Next-Generation Signaling Gateways With ATCA

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Published by: artsan3 on Jun 16, 2013
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White Paper
Executive Summary
 Advanced Telecom Computing Architecture (AdvancedTCA*) has already been adopted by majortelecom equipment manufacturers (TEMs) as an open, standards-based modular communicationsplatform (MCP) of choice for next-generation telecom infrastructures (see Appendix A). A modularand standards-based approach leads to interoperable and readily available commercial-off-the-shelf(COTS) solutions from multiple vendors, and allows the telecom industry to realize dramatic price andperformance benefits as well as the ability to deploy innovative applications faster. As AdvancedTCA-based MCP adoption grows, standards compliance and interoperability amongnumerous modular building blocks are becoming focal points for network equipment providers.This white paper presents examples of AdvancedTCA-based building blocks for SS7 infrastructuresolutions such as signaling gateways. Examples are based on COTS PMC and AdvancedMC*modules from Interphase Corporation, and AdvancedTCA blades from Intel.
Creating Next-Generation Signaling Gateways UsingAdvancedTCA* and AdvancedMC* Technology
Interoperable and Industry Standards-Based Modular Building BlocksEnable Price and Performance Benefits
 
Table of Contents
Introduction to SS7 Infrastructure and Signaling .............................................................................................................................3Signaling Protocol Stacks ...................................................................................................................................................3Signaling in the IMS Network ........................................................................................................................................................4Signaling Gateway Requirements...................................................................................................................................................4Signaling Gateway Implementations within the Network ........................................................................................................4Roles of Signaling Gateways in the Network .........................................................................................................................5Critical Features of a Signaling Gateway ...............................................................................................................................6Building a Signaling Gateway using AdvancedTCA* Modular Building Blocks ....................................................................................7Key Engineering Parameters ..............................................................................................................................................7Configuration Options and Considerations ............................................................................................................................8Option 1: AdvancedTCA Blade with I/O AdvancedMC* ..........................................................................................................8Option : SBC and Carrier with I/O AdvancedMC .................................................................................................................8System Architecture Description and Software Offering Description .......................................................................................9Providing High Availability via Geographic Redundancy..........................................................................................................9Conclusion: Benefits of a Modular Building-Block Approach ..........................................................................................................10 Appendix A: Key Findings from IDC 006 Survey .........................................................................................................................11
 
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Introduction to SS7 Infrastructureand Signaling
Because the primary application of signaling gateways is to allowTDM networks to interconnect with emerging IP-based IMS networks,the demand for signaling gateways will grow until IMS networksachieve the same subscriber capacity as TDM networks. At thisinflection point, demand for signaling gateways will be driven bythe need to provide carrier-to-carrier signaling demarcation (orfirewall). A number of factors have energized SS7 signaling growthbeyond simple “call control” to provision enhanced services forTDM and IP domains. These factors include new subscribergrowth rates in emerging markets, steady growth in SMS messaging,VoIP-enhanced services, and interoperability between the legacypublic switched telephone network (PSTN) and next-generationnetworks. The market for network elements using SS7-basedsignaling (MSCs, SSPs, STPs, HLRs, SMSSs, and SS7 gateways)remains strong and is expected to grow to $8 billion by 008.
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 A signaling gateway transports application signaling between theSS7 network and the IP network, serving to bridge legacy PSTNwith the packet-switched, next-generation network. When used inconjunction with softswitches, media gateways, application servers,and media servers, a signaling gateway provides the call controlfunctionality and service processing capabilities of traditional PSTNswitches. Signaling gateways implement SS7 protocol stack andrelated SS7-over-IP SIGTRAN subcomponents.Signaling Transport (SIGTRAN) addresses issues of transport, includingsignaling performance within IP networks, and interworking withthe PSTN. It also addresses SIP/MEGACO/ISUP interworking suchas translating the MTP-based SS7 message (such as IAM) to anIP-based message (such as IP IAM), and translation from pointcode to IP address.
Signaling Protocol Stacks
Figure 1 shows the signaling protocol layers for SIGTRAN and SS7in the boxes on the left and right, respectively. The center box showsthe protocol layers that are the focus of a signaling gateway.There are many different SS7 application protocols specific tovarious SS7 network elements in both wireline and wirelessnetworks. ISUP and TCAP, shown in Figure 1, are only two ofthese protocols. It is important to note that the signaling gatewaydoes not need to be aware of the protocols used above the Layer 4signaling connection control part (SCCP).Figure  shows the relationship between the SS7 (blue) and SIGTRAN(gray) protocol layers. The signaling gateway maps the SS7 protocolsto the equivalent SIGTRAN protocol (and vice versa) at the same layerwhen SS7 messages need to be sent between TDM networks and IMSnetworks. As the diagram shows, there are typically different optionsfor protocols in each of the layers. The signaling gateway needs tosupport all these options.
Signaling Gateway IP SignalingEnd PointSS7 Node
NIFApplicationISUPTCAPSCCPM3UAMTP3MTP2MTP1SCTPIPSCCPM3UA MTP3ATMMTP2MTP1SSCFSSCOPSCTPIPIP SS7ApplicationISUPTCAPSCCP
Figure 1:
SIGTRAN and SS7 protocol stacks

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