TRAFFIC CASES Introduction In this chapter a number of traffic cases will be described.

We will follow the mobile station in different situations. Normal calls (speech) as well as data calls and sending of short messages (textual messages) will be described. We will also look at what happens while the mobile is roaming (moving around, but no traffic going on), and when the mobile changes cell during a call. Before looking at the different cases some definitions have to be clarified. MS turned off The mobile station does not answer paging messages, therefore there is no contact between the MS and the network. The network does not get any information on where the MS is. This state is considered as MS detached. MS turned on When the MS is turned on – or MS attached – it can be in two states: MS idle While moving around - roaming - the mobile listens to the ”best” cell for paging messages. The MS decides by itself which cell is the best one. This is done by comparing own cell to neighboring cells. If a neighboring cell is considered better the MS will change cells and, if necessary, inform the system about the new Location Area. This is called location updating. In idle state the MS can receive short messages or cell broadcast messages. MS active MS is considered active (or busy) when there is a call (speech, fax or data), or a call set up procedure, going on. In this state the MS does not decide by itself if it is necessary to change cell. Based on measurements provided by the MS and the BTS, the BSC makes the decision on change of cell. The decision making is considered as locating, while the actual change of cells is considered as handover. In active state the MS can at the same time receive short messages, but not cell broadcast messages. MS in idle mode

In Figure 86 we can see what different cases can occur while the MS is turned on and roaming, listening for paging messages, measuring in order to be connected to the best cell etc. We will describe the different traffic cases in more detail in the following sections. (See also chapter Digital radio - air interface). Roaming The ability to move around, changing cells and connections over the air interface for quality reasons is called roaming. As long as the mobile changes cells belonging to the same Location Area (LA), as in case 1 in Figure 86, the network will not be informed. The most accurate location which is stored in the VLR is the Location Area. If the mobile changes cells belonging to different Location Areas the network has to be informed. This is done via the procedure Location updating type normal. But how does the MS know that the ”new” cell belongs to a different LA? When MS is roaming it listens to the BCCH–carrier (the frequency on which Broadcast Control information is sent (see chapter “Digital radio – air interface”). Among other things the current LAI, Location Area Identity, is broadcasted. MS compares the last LAI received and stored in MS, with the LAI just being received. If they remain the same, no

action will be taken by the MS. If they differ we have the case of Location updating type normal. Location updating type normal The mobile will only notice the change of Location Areas. It will have no idea if the LAs in turn belongs to a different MSC/VLR or the same MSC/VLR. When the mobile sends the Location updating message the MSC/VLR will realize whether this is a known MS, already registered, or if it is a new visitor. Let us look at the signalling for Location updating.

1. MS listens to BCCH in the new cell to find out the Location Area Identity, LAI. The new LAI is compared to the old one. If they differ an update of the location needs to take place. 2. MS establishes a connection with the GSM/PLMN via SDCCH. Authentication is then performed (with the help of HLR if the MS is unknown in the MSC/VLR). 3. MS sends a Location Updating Request to the system, if the authentication was successful. If the new LA belongs to a new MSC/VLR the HLR will also be updated. 4. Location Updating is acknowledged by the system, and BTS and MS are requested to release the signalling channel. IMSI detach The IMSI detach procedure enables the mobile station to indicate to the network that the mobile subscriber will switch off the phone. After this no paging is done in order to find this mobile subscriber.

As mentioned earlier, a mobile in active state is marked attached (IMSI flag). At “Power off”, the MS sends a last message to the network, containing a request for the detach procedure. On reception of the IMSI detach message, the MSC/VLR marks the corresponding IMSI flag detached. As shown in Figure 88, HLR is not informed. Only the VLR is updated with the IMSI detach information. Note: No acknowledgment is transmitted to the MS.

Location updating type IMSI attach The IMSI attach procedure is performed only when the MS is turned on in the same LA as it was when it sent the detach message. Otherwise the location updating procedure must be performed. (See Figure 87). Location updating type periodic registration If the MS sends an “IMSI detach” to the system, and the radio link quality is too bad, the system might not be able to decode the information. Since no acknowledgment is sent to the MS, no further attempt is made. This means that the system still will regard the MS as attached. Therefore, the MS is forced to register for example every 30 minutes. This is called periodic registration. Periodic registration has an acknowledgment message, so that the MS will try to register until it receives this message. The MS will be informed on the BCCH how often periodic registration must be performed. Implicit detach What happens if the system does not receive the detach message, for example if the MS is turned off outside the radio coverage area or while in radio shadow, case 6 in Figure 86. Since the system will wait for the Location updating type periodic registration, and it does not receive it within a certain time, the MS will be marked as detached in the VLR. This case is known as Implicit detach. MS in busy mode

In Figure 89 we can see some of the cases when MS is put in busy mode and cases when MS is in busy mode. The different cases will be described in more detail in the following sections. In all cases described we assume that the MS is attached and roaming. Call from MS This section describes what happens when a mobile subscriber wants to set up a voice call. Data call and sending of a short message will be described separately, since they involve other elements in the network. Let us look at the signalling used for setting up the voice call.

1. MS uses RACH (Random Access channel) to ask for a signalling channel, SDCCH (Stand alone Dedicated Control channel). 2. BSC allocates a signalling channel, using AGCH (Access Grant channel). 3. MS sends a call set up request via SDCCH to the MSC/VLR. Over SDCCH all signalling preceding a call takes place. This includes marking the MS ”busy” in MSC/VLR, authentication procedure, start ciphering equipment identification, sending the B–number (the number to the called subscriber, in this case a PSTN subscriber) and checking if the subscriber has the service ”Barring of outgoing calls” activated. 4. MSC/VLR asks the BSC to allocate a free TCH (traffic channel). This is forwarded to the BTS and MS, which are told to activate the TCH. 5. MSC/VLR forwards the B–number to an exchange in the PSTN, which establishes a connection in PSTN to the B–subscriber. B answers (hopefully), and the connection will be established. Call to MS The big difference between making a call to a mobile subscriber and making a call to subscriber in PSTN is that we do not know the location of the mobile subscriber. Therefore we must locate and page the MS before we can set up a connection. Let us take a look at the call setup procedure from a PSTN–subscriber to a mobile subscriber.

1. PSTN subscriber keys the MSISDN, (MS telephone number). MSISDN is analyzed in the local exchange in PSTN, which realizes that this is a call to a subscriber in a GSM network. A connection is set up to the GMSC (Gateway MSC). 2. GMSC analyses MSISDN to find out in which HLR the MS is registered, and interrogates the HLR for information about how to route the call to the serving MSC/VLR. 3. HLR translates MSISDN into IMSI, and finds out which MSC/VLR is currently serving the MS. HLR also checks the service, ”Call forwarding to C–number”. If the service is active the call is rerouted by the GMSC to that number, probably via PSTN. 4. HLR requests a roaming number, MSRN (Mobile Station Roaming Number), from the serving MSC/VLR. MSRN identifies the MSC/VLR. 5. MSC/VLR returns the MSRN via HLR to the GMSC. 6. GMSC reroutes the call to the MSC/VLR, directly or via the PSTN. 7. The MSC/VLR knows in which Location area, LA, the MS is. A Paging message is sent to the BSCs controlling the LA. (The information on which cells belong to which LA is stored in the BSC, but according to the GSM specification it can as well be stored in the MSC).

8. The BSCs distribute the Paging message to the BTSs in the wanted LA. The BTSs transmit the message over the air interface using PCH (Paging channel). To page the MS, IMSI (International Mobile Subscriber Identity) or TMSI (Temporary Mobile Subscriber Identity, valid only in the current MSC/VLR service area) is used. 9. When the MS detects the paging message it sends a request for a signalling channel, SDCCH. 10. BSC provides a SDCCH, using AGCH. 11. SDCCH is used for the call set up procedures, as in the case for ”Call from MS”, and then a TCH is allocated. SDCCH is released. The mobile phone rings, and when the subscriber answers the connection is completed. See Figure 91. Handover The process of changing cells during a call is in GSM terms referred to as Handover. To be able to choose the best target cell measurements are performed by the MS and the BTS. The fact that MS contributes to the handover decision is called MAHO, Mobile Assisted Handover. The measurements from the MS and the BTS are processed in the BSC. This evaluation process is called Locating. Before we look at the different handover cases we will describe briefly what locating is. Locating From chapter Digital radio – problems and solutions we know that the MS continuously measures signal strength and quality (Bit Error Rate, BER) on own cell, and signal strength on the BCCH–carriers of the neighboring cells. This is made on the downlink while MS is in busy mode. The measurement results are sent to the BTS on SACCH (Slow Associated Control Channel) every 480 ms (see also Figure 92).

The serving BTS measures signal strength and quality on the uplink. The measurements from the BTS and the ones from MS are sent to the BSC as measurements reports. On the basis of these reports the BSC decides if a handover is necessary and also to which cell. This is known as locating. (See also chapter Base Station System). As soon as one of the neighboring cells is considered better than the serving cell, a handover is attempted. Another reason for attempting a handover, besides signal strength and quality reasons, is if the TA (Timing Advance) used by MS exceeds a threshold value set by the operator. This is the case when the MS is moving over the cell border to another cell. When the MS has changed cells the new BTS informs the MS on the new neighboring BCCH–carriers, so the measurements can take place again. If the MS also has changed Location Areas, a Location updating type normal will take place after the call has been finished. Handover between cells controlled by the same BSC This is case 3 in Figure 89. When performing a handover between two cells controlled by the same BSC the MSC/VLR is not involved. MSC/VLR will be informed though that a handover has been performed. If the handover was performed between cells belonging to different LAs the Location updating type normal procedure will take place, but not until the call has been finished.

Based on the measurements received from BTS and MS, the BSC decides that a handover is necessary and to which cell. 1. BSC orders the new BTS to activate a TCH. 2. BSC sends a message to the MS via the old BTS containing information about the frequency and time slot to change to, and also what output power to use. This information is sent over FACCH (Fast Associated Control Channel). 3. MS tunes to the new frequency, and transmits Handover (HO) access bursts in the correct time slot. Since MS has no information yet on the Timing Advance, the HO bursts are very short (only 8 bits of information). The HO bursts are transmitted on FACCH. 4. When the new BTS detects the HO bursts it sends information about timing advance. This is sent on FACCH. 5. MS sends a Handover Complete message to BSC via new BTS. 6. BSC tells the old BTS to release the old TCH. See Figure 93. Handover between cells: different BSCs but the same MSC/VLR When we involve another BSC in the handover we have to involve the MSC/VLR for the connection between the two BSCs. This is case 4 in Figure 89.

1. The serving (old) BSC sends a Handover required message to the MSC together with the identity of the target cell. 2. MSC knows which BSC that controls this BTS and sends a Handover request to this BSC. 3. New BSC orders target BTS to activate a TCH. 4. New BSC sends a message to the MS via MSC, old BSC and old BTS containing information about the frequency and time slot to change to, and what output power to use. This information is sent over FACCH (Fast Associated Control Channel). 5. MS tunes to the new frequency, and transmits Handover (HO) access bursts in the correct time slot. Since MS has no information yet on the Timing Advance, the HO bursts are very short (only 8 bits of information). The HO bursts are transmitted on FACCH. 6. When the new BTS detects the HO bursts it sends information about timing advance. This is sent on FACCH. 7. MS sends Handover Complete message to MSC via new BSC. 8. The MSC sends an order to old BSC previously to release the old TCH. 9. The old BSC tells the old BTS to release the previously used TCH. Handover between cells controlled by different MSC/VLRs

Handover between cells controlled by different MSC/VLR can only be performed within a country and within one PLMN (network controlled by one operator). Cells controlled by different MSC/VLRs also means that they are controlled by different BSCs. This handover case is case 5 in Figure 89.

1. The serving (old) BSC sends a Handover required message to the serving MSC, MSC–A, together with the identity of the target cell. 2. MSC–A realizes that this cell belongs to another MSC, MSC–B, and asks for help. 3. MSC–B allocates a handover number in order to reroute the call. A Handover request is then sent to the new BSC. 4. New BSC orders target BTS to activate a TCH. 5. MSC–B receives the information, and passes it on to MSC–A together with the handover number. 6. A link is set up to MSC–B, possibly via PSTN. 7. MSC–A sends a HO command to MS, via old BSC containing information on which frequency and time slot to use, and what output power to use. This information is sent over FACCH (Fast Associated Control Channel). 8. MS tunes to the new frequency, and transmits Handover (HO) access bursts in the correct time slot. The HO bursts are transmitted on FACCH. 9. When the new BTS detects the HO bursts it sends information about timing advance. This is sent on FACCH.

10. MS sends Handover Complete message to old MSC via new BSC and new MSC/VLR. 11. A new path in the group switch in MSC–A is established, and the call is switched through. The old TCH is deactivated (not shown in the picture). The old MSC, MSC–A, will retain the main control of the call until the call is cleared. After call release the MS must perform a location updating, since a Location Area never belongs to more than one MSC/VLR Service Area. The HLR will be updated by the VLR–B, and will in turn tell VLR–A to delete all information about the MS. Short Message Service, SMS, point–to–point The Short Message Service, SMS, provides a means of sending text messages, containing up to 160 alpha numerical characters, to and from GSM mobile stations. SMS makes use of a Service Centre, which acts a store and forward centre for short messages. SMS comprises two basic services: • Mobile terminated (from a SMS–C to a mobile station) SMS. • Mobile originated (from a mobile station to a SMS–C) SMS. In the two cases below, Mobile terminated and Mobile originated SMS, we assume that the MS is in idle mode . If the MS is in busy mode the short message will be transmitted on the SACCH (Slow Associated Control channel). No paging , call setup, authentication etc. has to be performed in that case. Mobile terminated SMS The mobile terminated SMS has the capability to transfer a short message from the SMS–C to a mobile station. It also provides information about the delivery of the short message. This information is either a delivery report, which confirms the delivery of the message to a recipient, or a failure report, which informs the originator that the short message was not delivered and the reason why. There is also the possibility to order retransmission later.

1. A user sends a message to a SMS–C 2. SMS–C sends the message to the SMS–GMSC. 3. SMS–GMSC interrogates the HLR for routing information 4. The HLR returns routing information to the SMS-GMSC. 5. SMS-GMSC reroutes the message to the MSC/VLR. 6. MS is paged and a connection is set up between the MS and the network, as in the normal call setup case. (This step is not performed if the MS is in busy mode. Then we know where the MS is, and that it is allowed in the network). 7. If authentication was successful the MSC/VLR delivers the message to the MS. Short messages are transmitted on the allocated signalling channel, SDCCH. 8. If the delivery was successful a delivery report is sent from MSC/VLR to the SMS–C. If not, the HLR is informed by the MSC/VLR, and a failure report is sent to SMS–C. In the case of an unsuccessful delivery the service Messages waiting will provide the HLR and VLR with the information that there is a message in the originating SMS–C waiting to be delivered to the MS. The information in HLR contains a list of SMS–C addresses which have made unsuccessful delivery attempts. In VLR a flag indicates whether the list is empty or not. HLR informs the SMS–C when the MS is available. The mobile terminated SMS may be input to the SMS–C by a variety of sources, e.g. speech, telex or facsimile. Mobile originated SMS

Mobile originated SMS will transfer a short message submitted by the MS to a service centre. It will also provide information about the delivery of the short message, either by a delivery report or a failure report.

1. MS establishes a connection to the network, as in the case of a normal call setup. (This step is not performed if the MS is in busy mode, since there already exists a connection). 2. If the authentication was successful MS sends the short message to the SMS–C via MSC/VLR. The SMS–C in turn forwards the short message to its destination. This could be a MS or a terminal in the fixed network. Data call With a bearer service the GSM network provides a transmission path between two access points and also a user–network interface. The network will be responsible to deliver in one network what was received in the other. Interworking attributes may be defined for the support of bearer services over transit networks. We know that each MSC must have a dedicated GSM Interworking Unit, GIWU, in order to handle a data call. The MSC is always in control of the data call and can execute changes in the resources despite the MS mobility. This is also because no centralized interworking function, IWF, exists in the GSM specification. Let us take a look at how a data call is performed.

1. MS initiates a data call. In the call setup message the Bearer Capability, BC, is included. The BC tells us which type of bearer service (fax, data) and the transmission rate that is requested. 2. A connection between the MS and the network is set up, as in a normal call, and authentication is performed. 3. MSC analyses the BC, and the B–number and the BC are transferred to the GIWU. 4. GIWU is configured to perform the required service, i.e. rate adaptation Fax or Modem service. 5. GIWU reroutes the call to MSC. 6. MSC routes the call to PSTN or ISDN. Within the GSM network all connections are circuit switched. This does not, however, prohibit packet services. In order to access a packet switched public data network, PSPDN, a connection to PAD, Packet Assembly Disassembly, is needed. The PAD transforms the bit stream from an asynchronous terminal to data packages.

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