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TRANSFORMING

MISSION-CRITICAL
NETWORKS
IP/MPLS NETWORK
TRANSFORMATION TO SUPPORT
SCADA APPLICATION MIGRATION
APPLICATION NOTE
ABSTRACT
Our modern society is fully dependent on smooth and safe operations of industries such
as power utilities, oil and gas as well as public transport and safety authorities, whose
operations are usually widespread geographically. To ensure smooth and safe operations,
their mission-critical networks need to collect data from and monitor processes at all
remote stations using supervisory control and data acquisition (SCADA) systems.
As mission-critical networks rapidly adopt IP/MPLS as part of the converged network
transformation program, continued support for the low-speed serial data generated by
widely-deployed SCADA systems is a challenge. Even though IP/MPLS is capable of
carrying TDM data transparently, there is no obvious solution to merge traffc from the
many remote locations at the control center. Merging traffc requires an advanced TDM
data bridging capability called Multi-Drop Data Bridge (MDDB) to be available on an
IP/MPLS platform.
Rising to this challenge, Alcatel-Lucent delivers a converged IP/MPLS-based com-
munications solution with an integrated MDDB that enables an IP/MPLS network
to be compatible with legacy TDM applications. This paper describes how this solution
can be deployed to carry legacy SCADA application traffc in an IP/MPLS network.
TABLE OF CONTENTS
Introduction / 1
Challenges for mission-critical networks / 1
SCADA overview / 1
Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS Network Solution / 2
Many VPNS, one network / 3
Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS solution components overview / 4
Alcatel-Lucent MDDB Solution for
SCADA Application Migration to IP/MPLS / 4
Communication between master and slave equipment / 4
Solution architecture and overview / 5
Master equipment redundancy protection / 7
Branch squelching / 9
Conclusion / 10
Acronyms / 10
Transforming Mission-Critical Networks
ALCATEL-LUCENT APPLICATION NOTE
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INTRODUCTION
Challenges for mission-critical networks
Our modern society is fully dependent on smooth and safe operations of industries such
as power utilities, oil and gas as well as public transport and safety authorities, whose
operations are usually widespread geographically and at times extend even to uninhabit-
able terrain. To ensure smooth and safe operations, their mission-critical networks need
to collect data from and monitor industrial processes at all remote stations. SCADA
systems are designed to fulfll this need. SCADA is sometimes called telecontrol equip-
ment in power utilities, as in the IEC 60870 standard suite, as well as interlocking system
by rail operators.
A SCADA system has a master station in a control center and many slave stations in
the feld communicating with each other over a low-speed serial interface. As mission-
critical communications networks are rapidly adopting IP/MPLS as part of the converged
network transformation program, one challenge is continued support of low-speed serial
data generated by widely-deployed SCADA systems. These systems can have a service
life as long as 20 to 25 years, and they use proprietary TDM protocols. Even though IP/
MPLS is capable of carrying TDM data transparently with TDM pseudowire technology,
there is no obvious solution to merge the traffc received from many remote locations
received at the control center. To do this requires an advanced TDM data bridging
capability called MDDB to be available on an IP/MPLS platform.
SCADA overview
By centrally monitoring alarms and processing status data in the feld continually with
SCADA systems, the effciency and uptime of the industrial process can be increased,
resulting in substantial operational savings. Common applications include voltage,
current and frequency reading in power grids, pressure measurement in oil and gas
pipelines, as well as automation of traffc lights and railroad crossing gates.
A typical SCADA system has four components:
Sensors: Devices that monitor the managed process and equipment.
Remote Telemetry Units (RTUs): Devices in the feld that collect information from
sensors and transmit it to a SCADA master. RTUs are commonly called slaves.
SCADA master: The main end equipment at the control center that the user interacts
with, usually through a Human Machine Interface (HMI) that runs on a computer. The
SCADA master controls and communicates with a number of RTUs/slaves periodically.
Communications network: Sits between the central master and remote slaves,
providing reliable and resilient communications between them. Because it carries
information critical to safe and effcient operation of the industrial process, the
communications network is considered to be a mission-critical network.
Transforming Mission-Critical Networks
ALCATEL-LUCENT APPLICATION NOTE
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Figure 1 shows the four SCADA system components.
Figure 1. SCADA system components
REMOTE SITE
CONTROL CENTER
Sensors
RTU/slave
Master
HMI
Sensors
RTU/slave
Mission-critical
communications network
ALCATEL-LUCENT IP/MPLS NETWORK SOLUTION
Many operators of mission-critical networks have started to consider deploying, or
have already deployed, converged next-generation networks to support all their com-
munications needs. However, not all next-generation solutions are appropriate. To
simultaneously support all mission-critical and non-mission-critical traffc, an IP/MPLS-
based communications network is needed.
Non-MPLS-based IP networks have grown signifcantly in recent years, but they often
lack the necessary traffc management capability to support traffc that requires strict
quality of service (QoS) for mission-critical operations. They also lack the fexibility to
optimize the use of network resources and the capability to react to network events fast
enough to guarantee end-to-end QoS per application.
By using an Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS network, operators get the best of both worlds
the versatility of an IP network and the predictability of a circuit-based network along
with high capacity and support for packet-based traffc with high QoS. An IP/MPLS
network enables the deployment of new IP/Ethernet applications and also supports exist-
ing TDM-based applications. Because IP/MPLS networks can continue to carry existing
TDM services, operators can now fexibly choose when to migrate the applications from
TDM to IP.
Transforming Mission-Critical Networks
ALCATEL-LUCENT APPLICATION NOTE
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With an IP/MPLS network, operators have a network with the following features:
High scalability and robustness with full redundancy and rapid recovery mechanism
such as MPLS Fast Reroute (FRR)
A solution that addresses a wide range of QoS and Service Level Agreement (SLA)
requirements, from circuit emulation to best-effort Internet surfng
Optimized bandwidth usage of all links and avoidance of common modes through
traffc engineering
An extensive operations, administration and maintenance (OAM) suite for performance
monitoring, troubleshooting and maintenance at all protocol layers
Advanced network and service management to simplify operations
Each application run on the network has its unique requirements for bandwidth, QoS
and availability. An IP/MPLS network enables operators to confgure service parameters
for each service and traffc type according to operational requirements. This includes
multiple types of voice, video and data traffc. The network can also support low jitter
and delay to handle all traffc types effectively and reliably in real time. In addition, an
Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS network supports advanced capabilities, including non-stop
routing, non-stop services and FRR, to maintain high network resiliency.
Many VPNS, one network
An Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS network provides for the virtual isolation of various traffc
types on a single infrastructure supporting many Virtual Private Networks (VPNs)
simultaneously. As shown in Figure 2, whether the network is a Virtual Leased Line
(VLL) of various types, a Virtual Private LAN Service (VPLS) or a Virtual Private Routed
Network (VPRN), deploying Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS allows full separation of control and
data traffc in each VPN from other applications or operations in the network. The results
are a fully secured environment, effective infrastructure sharing and optimal bandwidth
allocation. With this advanced capability, the same IP/MPLS network infrastructure can
be leveraged to also carry corporate business data.
VPL
service
Virtual bridge
VPLS
Layer 2 bridged multipoint
Ethernet service
IP/MPLS
network
B B
B B
ATM
service
VLL
Point-to-Point pseudowire
(such as TDM or frame relay)
IP/MPLS
network
TDM
service
Ethernet
service
VPRN
Layer 3 IP VPN

Virtual router
R
R
R
R
R
7705 SAR
7705 SAR
R
B
B
B
7705 SAR
Figure 2. Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS-network
Transforming Mission-Critical Networks
ALCATEL-LUCENT APPLICATION NOTE
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Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS solution components overview
The Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS implementation provides a service-oriented approach that
focuses on service scalability and quality as well as per-service OAM. A service-aware
infrastructure enables the operator to tailor services such as mission-critical applications
so that the network has the guaranteed bandwidth to meet peak requirements. The
Alcatel-Lucent service routers support IP routing and switching, which enables the
network to support real-time Layer 2 and Layer 3 applications.
The Alcatel-Lucent converged IP/MPLS network leverages multiple state-of-the-art
technologies. The network extends IP/MPLS capabilities from the core to access and
can include the following main components:
Alcatel-Lucent 7750 Service Router (SR)
Alcatel-Lucent 7705 Service Aggregation Router (SAR)
Alcatel-Lucent 7450 Ethernet Services Switch (ESS)
Alcatel-Lucent 7210 Service Access Switch (SAS)
Alcatel-Lucent 9500 Microwave Packet Radio (MPR) providing packet microwave
link connecting MPLS nodes
Alcatel-Lucent 1830 Photonic Service Switch (PSS) as optical layer underlying the
IP/MPLS network
Alcatel-Lucent 5620 Service Aware Manager (SAM) for service and network
management
ALCATEL-LUCENT MDDB SOLUTION FOR
SCADA APPLICATION MIGRATION TO IP/MPLS
The Alcatel-Lucent MDDB solution for SCADA is supported on the Alcatel-Lucent 7705
SAR product family to help operators migrate traffc from current and legacy SCADA
application on a TDM network to an IP/MPLS network.
Communication between master and slave equipment
In a SCADA system, one master can be responsible for tens or hundreds of slaves. The
interface used to connect to the communications network is usually a serial interface
such as V.24 or X.21 with a bit rate ranging from 300 b/s to 19.2 kb/s. The communica-
tion between the master and slaves is as follows:
1. The master queries the individual slaves sequentially using a broadcast query
message embedded with a unique slave address encoded inside the message.
2. Although the broadcast query message is sent to all the slaves, only the addressed
slave processes the query and responds by sending data back in a reply message.
3. Through another broadcast message encoded with another slave address, the
master then queries another slave. The slave responds as in Step 2.
4. These steps are repeated continuously.
Transforming Mission-Critical Networks
ALCATEL-LUCENT APPLICATION NOTE
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During the idling time, all slaves are transmitting an all ones pattern back to the master.
To flter the response message, a data bridge performing an AND gate logic function
is required.
Figure 3 shows this process with fve slaves being queried sequentially.
Figure 3. SCADA communications between master and slaves
Master polls individual slave
sequentially through broadcast message
Polled slave replies to
master through unicasting
2
1
3
5
4
AND

Unlike some real-time applications, such as voice or teleprotection, SCADA data is not
delay-sensitive.
Solution architecture and overview
Figure 4 shows the architecture of the Alcatel-Lucent 7705 SAR-based MDDB solution.
A 7705 SAR at the control center aggregates traffc from slaves for the master 7705 SARs
at the remote sites that interface with the slaves.

Figure 4. 7705 SAR-based MDDB solution
IP/MPLS
network
REMOTE
SITES
CONTROL CENTER
IP/MPLS router
with MDDB
Serial
interface
1
2
Serial
interface
7705 SAR
Serial
interface
1
C-PIPE C-PIPE
Transforming Mission-Critical Networks
ALCATEL-LUCENT APPLICATION NOTE
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As labeled in the fgure, there are two key functions in the communication between
master and slaves that the MDDB solution provides:
1. Using TDM pseudowires, also called C-pipes, the 7705 SARs at remote sites packetize
and transport traffc generated by the low-speed serial interface of slaves across the
IP/MPLS network towards the control center gateway router.
2. At the control center, a 7705 SAR router acts as the MDDB. The MDDB is
implemented in a dedicated resource card called the Integrated Services Card (ISC).
It receives all traffc from various slaves through individual TDM pseudowires, flters
out the idling traffc and sends a reply message to a particular slave.
The master communicates with the slaves using the same steps in reverse order. The
master sends traffc to the MDDB, then the traffc is broadcast over individual pseudow-
ires to each slave.
The traffc from slaves is transported across the IP/MPLS network using TDM pseudow-
ire technology as described in IETF RFC5086
1
.
Because the interface speed usually ranges from 300 b/s to 19.2 kb/s, the traffc needs
to frst be rate-adapted to 64 kb/s. It is then packetized into an MPLS packet. The packet
is carried over a pseudowire inside a Label Switched Path (LSP) tunnel established by
MPLS signaling.
The ISC is a powerful resource that can be virtualized to support multiple applications
simultaneously. Multiple MDDBs can be supported on the same ISC (see Figure 5).
Figure 5. A two-MDDB deployment scenario
Two
virtual
MDDB
instances
7705
SAR
C-PIPE C-PIPE C-PIPE C-PIPE


1 http://tools.ietf.org/html/rfc5086
Transforming Mission-Critical Networks
ALCATEL-LUCENT APPLICATION NOTE
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MASTER EQUIPMENT REDUNDANCY PROTECTION
Master equipment is critical to SCADA operation. If it becomes faulty, no feld data and
alarms can be recorded and processed. This situation could potentially cause catastrophic
damage if the failure lasts for a long time. Therefore, redundancy protection is required
to maximize uptime.
SCADA solutions support redundant masters with both an active and a standby master
listening to replies from slaves but only the active master transmitting. The Alcatel-
Lucent MDDB solution is designed to work with this master redundancy behavior.
There are various protection models for network operators to choose from. Each model
provides a different level of protection and requires a different amount of resources to
implement. Depending on the networks reliability and robustness requirements as well
as other logistics constraints, an operator can choose accordingly.
Model 1: Active/standby master pair with A/B switch
Model 1 has one control center router with one MDDB and an A/B switch connected
to active and standby SCADA master equipment, to provide redundancy protection. If
the active master fails, the operator intervenes manually to activate the A/B switch to
connect to the standby master.
Model 2: Active/standby master pair with two interfaces over single MDDB
Model 2 is similar to Model 1 except that instead of using an external A/B switch, each
master connects to the MDDB with its own serial interface. The standby masters inter-
face status is confgured to standby. If the active master fails, the operator intervenes to
toggle the standby master status to active using the Command Line Interface (CLI) or the
network manager.
Figure 6 shows Model 1 and Model 2.

Figure 6. Protection models 1 and 2
A/B SWITCH
Serial
interface
Serial
interface
7705 SAR
MODEL 2:
Active/standby master pair with
two interfaces over single MDDB
MODEL 1:
Active/standby master pair with
A/B switch over single MDDB
C-PIPE C-PIPE C-PIPE C-PIPE
Transforming Mission-Critical Networks
ALCATEL-LUCENT APPLICATION NOTE
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Model 3: Active/standby master pair with two MDDBs over one router
In Model 3, in addition to the two masters, there are two MDDB instances running on
two ISCs in the control center router. The router is also typically equipped with redundant
control and fabric complex and dual power feed to eliminate any single point of failure.
Model 4: Active/standby master pair with two MDDBs over two routers
In Model 4, the two MDDB instances run on two control center routers, each connecting
to a different master. The two routers and two masters can be located in different racks
or even on different foors of the control center to provide a limited degree of space
diversity protection (but no geographic diversity protection).
Figure 7 shows Model 3 and Model 4.
Figure 7. Protection models 3 and 4
MODEL 3:
Active/standby master pair
with two MDDBs over one router
7705
SAR
ISC
MODEL 4:
Active/standby pair with
two MDDBs over two routers
C-PIPE C-PIPE C-PIPE C-PIPE
Model 5: Primary/backup control center with active/standby/standby master trio
While Model 4, with two control center routers, can provide router redundancy, when
a disaster such as an earthquake or hurricane strikes, the whole control center building
can be damaged, affecting both routers and master equipment.
Model 5 provides protection in this scenario by placing a complete set of equipment
(SCADA master and router) in a backup control center that can be tens or hundreds
of kilometers away (see Figure 8). In case of active master failure, the standby master
becomes the active master, as in Model 3.If the operating control center is seriously
damaged, staff can quickly move to the backup undamaged control center to
continue operations.
Transforming Mission-Critical Networks
ALCATEL-LUCENT APPLICATION NOTE
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Figure 8. Protection Model 5
MODEL 5:
Active/standby/standby master trio
with primary/backup control center
PRIMARY CONTROL CENTER BACKUP
CONTROL CENTER
ISC
C-PIPE C-PIPE
Table 1 provides a concise comparison of the fve protection models. Each model has its
own merits and associated costs. To choose the model that best suits their needs, opera-
tors should assess their reliability and robustness requirements.
Table 1. Comparison of the ve protection models
MODEL 1 MODEL 2 MODEL 3 MODEL 4 MODEL 5
Required
equipment at
Control Center
2 x Master
1 x A/B Switch
1 x 7705 SAR
1 x ISC Card
(for MDDB)
2 x Master
1 x 7705 SAR
1 x ISC Card
2 x Master
1 x 7705 SAR
2 x ISC Card
2 x Master
2 x 7705 SAR
2 x ISC Card
2 x Master
2 x 7705 SAR
3 x ISC Card
Geographic
diversity
No; All in the
same Control
Center
No; All in the
same Control
Center
No; All in the
same Control
Center
No; All in the
same Control
Center
Yes; located
in two Control
Centers
Protected
element
Master
7705 SAR
Control/fabric/
power
Master
7705 SAR
Control/fabric/
power
Master
7705 SAR
Control/fabric/
power
ISC Card
Master
Whole 7705
SAR node
Master
Whole 7705
SAR node
Control Center
building
Branch squelching
When a slave goes out of order and continues to send data after the allotted response
time, it can lock up the MDDB so that it can no longer properly flter responses from
other slaves. With branch squelching, after a user confgurable period expires, incoming
data from the slave is overridden and replaced by an all ones pattern so that the MDDB
can continue to service other slaves. Meanwhile, an alarm is raised.
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Copyright 2013 Alcatel-Lucent. All rights reserved. NP2013113458EN (December)
CONCLUSION
Since its advent in communications networks, IP/MPLS technology has proven its
ultimate versatility and adaptability to operators of mission-critical networks worldwide.
Network operators can rest assured that both future and legacy applications such
as SCADA are able to run smoothly and seamlessly in an Alcatel-Lucent IP/MPLS
communications network.
ACRONYMS
CLI Command Line Interface
FRR Fast Reroute
HMI Human Machine Interface
IP/MPLS Internet Protocol/Multiprotocol Label Switching
LAN Local Area Network
MDDB Multi-drop Data Bridge
OAM operations, administration and maintenance
QoS Quality of Service
RTU Remote Telemetry Unit
SCADA supervisory control and data acquisition
SLA Service Level Agreement
TDM Time Division Multiplexing
VLL virtual leased line
VPLS Virtual private LAN service
VPN Virtual Private Network
VPRN Virtual Private Routed Network