Personal and Mobile Communications

Lecture 6

GSM
Global System for Mobile communication

GSM: Overview
GSM - Global System for Mobile

Several first generation analog cellular systems in Europe but incompatible - limited roaming formerly: Groupe Spéciale Mobile (founded 1982) now: Global System for Mobile communication Pan-European standard (ETSI, European Telecommunications Standardisation Institute; 1987-1989) simultaneous introduction of essential services in three phases (1991, 1994, 1996) by the European telecommunication administrations seamless roaming within Europe possible today many providers all over the world use GSM (more than 184 countries in Asia, Africa, Europe, Australia, America) more than 2000 million subscribers more than 80% of all digital mobile phones use GSM
Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM

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cars. portable handsets) Digital signaling and transmission Low cost infrastructure and terminal equipment ❍ ❍ 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-4 . eg.GSM: Overview Objectives: ❍ ❍ ❍ ❍ ❍ Broad offering of speech and data services Compatible with wireline networks.04. ISDN Automatic roaming and handoff Highly efficient use of frequency spectrum Support for different types of mobile terminal equipment (eg.

the network handles localization High capacity ❍ better frequency efficiency.Performance characteristics of GSM Communication ❍ mobile. trains) Security functions ❍ access control.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-5 . support for voice and data services Total mobility ❍ international access. authentication via chip-card and PIN 07. chip-card enables use of access points of different providers Worldwide connectivity ❍ one number. uninterrupted phone calls at higher speeds (e. from cars. more customers per cell High transmission quality ❍ high audio quality and reliability for wireless.. wireless communication.04. smaller cells.g.

S. data connections. S MT Um GSM-PLMN transit network (PSTN.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-6 source/ destination network TE (U. R) . short message service ❍ multi-service options (combination of basic services) Three service domains ❍ Bearer Services ❍ Telematic Services ❍ Supplementary Services bearer services MS TE R. ISDN) tele services 07.GSM: Mobile Services GSM offers ❍ several types of connections voice connections.04.

4.4.4.8 or 9.1200 bit/s ❍ data service (packet switched) synchronous: 2.Bearer Services Telecommunication services to transfer data between access points Specification of services up to the terminal interface (OSI layers 1-3) Traditionally it includes data access to PSTN/ISDN and packet switched data network Different data rates for voice and data (original standard) ❍ data service (circuit switched) synchronous: 2.04.8 or 9. 4.6 kbit/s asynchronous: 300 .9600 bit/s 07.6 kbit/s asynchronous: 300 .2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-7 .

mandatory for all service providers.04. Offered services ❍ mobile telephony primary goal of GSM was to enable mobile telephony offering the traditional bandwidth of 3.1 kHz ❍ Emergency number common number throughout Europe (112).2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-8 .Tele Services I Telecommunication services that enable voice communication via mobile phones All these basic services have to obey cellular functions. connection with the highest priority (preemption of other connections possible) ❍ Multinumbering several ISDN phone numbers per user possible 07. free of charge. security measurements etc.

implemented in the fixed network) ❍ Short Message Service (SMS) alphanumeric data transmission to/from the mobile terminal using the signaling channel. thus allowing simultaneous use of basic services and SMS 07.Tele Services II Additional services ❍ Non-Voice-Teleservices group 3 fax voice mailbox (implemented in the fixed network supporting the mobile terminals) electronic mail (MHS.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-9 . Message Handling System.

04. countries and protocol versions Important services ❍ identification: forwarding of caller number ❍ suppression of number forwarding ❍ automatic call-back ❍ conferencing with up to 7 participants ❍ locking of the mobile terminal (incoming or outgoing calls) 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-10 .Supplementary services Services in addition to the basic services. cannot be offered stand-alone Similar to ISDN services besides lower bandwidth due to the radio link May differ between different service providers.

04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-11 . handover.Architecture of the GSM system GSM is a PLMN (Public Land Mobile Network) ❍ several providers setup mobile networks following the GSM standard within each country components MS (mobile station) BS (base station) MSC (mobile switching center) LR (location register) ❍ ❍ subsystems RSS (radio subsystem): covers all radio aspects NSS (network and switching subsystem): call forwarding. switching OSS (operation subsystem): management of the network 07.

AUC NSS with OSS VLR MSC HLR GMSC fixed network VLR MSC BSC BSC RSS 07. EIR.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-12 .GSM: Architecture OMC.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-13 .GSM: Architecture 07.04.

PSTN PDN OSS EIR AUC OMC 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-14 .GSM: elements and interfaces radio cell MS MS BSS radio cell Um RSS BTS MS BTS Abis BSC BSC A MSC MSC VLR HLR O GMSC IWF NSS VLR signaling ISDN.04.

GSM: system architecture radio subsystem MS MS network and switching subsystem fixed partner networks ISDN PSTN Um BTS BTS Abis BSC MSC EIR SS7 HLR BTS BTS BSS BSC A MSC IWF VLR ISDN PSTN PSPDN CSPDN Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM .

open interface with 64 kbit/s user channels Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM .System architecture: radio subsystem radio subsystem MS MS network and Switching subsystem Components ❍ MS (Mobile Station) ❍ BSS (Base Station Subsystem): consisting of BTS (Base Transceiver Um BTS BTS Abis BSC MSC Station): sender and receiver BSC (Base Station Controller): controlling several transceivers BTS BTS BSS BSC A MSC Interfaces ❍ Um : radio interface ❍ Abis : standardized. open interface with 16 kbit/s user channels ❍ A: standardized.

managing of network resources.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-17 .Radio subsystem The Radio Subsystem (RSS) comprises the cellular mobile network up to the switching centers Components ❍ Base Station Subsystem (BSS): Base Transceiver Station (BTS): radio components including sender. receiver. mapping of radio channels (Um) onto terrestrial channels (A interface) BSS = BSC + sum(BTS) + interconnection ❍ Mobile Stations (MS) 07.if directed antennas are used one BTS can cover several cells Base Station Controller (BSC): switching between BTSs. controlling BTSs. antenna .

Radio subsystem .2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-18 . ❍ Signaling The multi-tone frequency signaling is used in POTS in the wired backbone. whereas GSM performs several packet exchange to establish a call. bandwidth limited. supports mobility ❍ ❍ Speech Conversion The MS generates radio-efficient 13 kbps digitized voice packets using speech coder. The BSS converts 13 to 64 kbps code. The backbone PSTN requires 64 kbps PCM digitized voice. The signaling conversion takes place at the BSS 07.04.BSS Base Station Subsystem ❍ ❍ ❍ It is the wireless point of contact of the network with users It forms Radio Access Network (RAN) It translates between the air interface and the wired infrastructure protocols The two network segments need different protocols because the difference of the nature of wireless links Unreliable.

The base station subsystem (BSS) An MS communicates with a base transceiver station (BTS) via the radio interface. A BTS performs all the transmission and reception functions relating to the GSM radio interface along with a degree of signal processing. Um.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-19 . 07. The BTSs are used to form the coverage cells in GSM and it is their position that determines the network’s coverage and capacity.. BTS can be considered to be a complex radio modem that takes the up-link radio signal from an MS and converts it into data for transmission within the GSM network.04. and accepts data from the GSM network and converts it into a radio signal that can be transmitted to the MS.

The base station subsystem (BSS) Although a BTS is concerned with transmission and reception over the radio interface. BSCs vary from manufacturer to manufacturer. it plays only a minor role in the way the radio resources are allocated to the different MSs. determining when a handover is required and identifying a suitable target BTS and controlling the transmitted power of an MS to ensure that it is just sufficient to reach its serving BTS. Instead.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-20 .04. The management functions include the allocation of radio channels to MSs on call set-up. but a BSC might typically control up to 40 BTSs. the management of the radio interface is performed by a base station controller (BSC). 07.

This allows a network operator the freedom to procure their BSCs and BTSs from different equipment manufacturers.The base station subsystem (BSS) In addition to its processing capacity. a BSC will also have a limited switching capability.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-21 . The BTS and BSC are collectively known as the base station subsystem (BSS). enabling it to route calls between the different BTSs under its control.04. specification. The interface between a BSC and an associated BTS is known as the A-bis interface and it is fully defined by an open. or public. 07.

lo c a tio n u p d a te H andover m anagem ent BTS X X X X X X BSC X X X X X X X X X X 07.BSS Tasks of a BSS are distributed over BSC and BTS BTS comprises radio specific functions BSC is the switching center for radio channels F u n c tio n s M a n a g e m e n t o f ra d io c h a n n e ls F re q u e n c y h o p p in g (F H ) M a n a g e m e n t o f te rre s tria l c h a n n e ls M a p p in g o f te rre s tria l o n to ra d io c h a n n e ls C h a n n e l c o d in g a n d d e c o d in g R a te a d a p ta tio n E n c ry p tio n a n d d e c ry p tio n P a g in g U p lin k s ig n a l m e a s u re m e n ts T ra ffic m e a s u re m e n t A u th e n tic a tio n L o c a tio n re g is try .2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-22 .04.Radio subsystem .

A mobile equipment (ME) comprises several functional groups. which is essentially the mobile phone itself without the SIM.04. the subscriber identity module (SIM). ❍ MT (Mobile Terminal) ❍ TA (Terminal Adapter) ❍ TE (Terminal Equipment) TE R TA S MT Um 07. and the mobile equipment (ME). as shown below. which is a removable smart card containing information that is specific to a particular subscriber.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-23 .Radio subsystem – The Mobile station Terminal for the use of GSM services The MS is composed of two distinct functional entities.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-24 . For example. The second is the terminal equipment (TE) and this performs functions that are specific to a particular service. The TE does not handle any functions that are specific to the GSM system. which is used to ensure compatibility between the MT and the TE. a TA would be required to interface between an ISDN-compatible MT and a TE with a modem interface. 07.04. MT offers common functions used by all services the MS offers. TA hides radio specific characteristics. MT is the end-point of the radio interface (Um). The third functional block is the terminal adapter (TA). for example a fax machine.The Mobile Equipment (ME) The first functional block is the mobile termination (MT) and this carries out all the functions relating to the transmission of information over the GSM radio interface.

04. This number is used to identify each individual subscriber within the GSM network and it consists of not more than 15 decimal digits. the term MS refers to the combination of a SIM and an ME. 07.The Subscriber Identity Module (SIM) SIM (Subscriber Identity Module) is a smart card (‘credit-card’ sized or smaller in the case of some handheld units) which can be used by a subscriber to personalize an ME. In GSM terminology. The SIM has an area of non-volatile memory which is used to store information specific to a particular subscriber and this includes the subscriber’s unique international mobile subscriber identity (IMSI) number.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-25 .

The subscriber will always be billed through her home network. IMSI is unique to each individual subscriber and it may also be used to determine the subscriber’s home network. The next two digits of the IMSI form the mobile network code (MNC) and this identifies the subscriber’s home PLMN within the country indicated by the MCC. The MNCs are allocated by a relevant authority within each country. the network with which the subscriber is registered. 07. even when she incurs call charges on other networks.e.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-26 . i.The mobile station (MS) The first three digits of the IMSI form the mobile country code (MCC) and this is used to identify the country of the particular subscriber’s home network. The remaining digits of the IMSI are the mobile subscriber identification number (MSIN) which is used to uniquely identify each subscriber within the context of their home PLMN.04.

They are used to implement the security features of GSM and they are stored in the SIM under heavy protection. the authentication algorithm. 07.04. Any incoming calls for the subscriber will be routed to the ME and any charges incurred using the ME will be billed to the subscriber’s account. This ensures compatibility between the SIMs and MEs of different manufacturers. The interface between the SIM and the ME is fully defined in the specifications and is referred to as the SIM–ME interface.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-27 . The use of the SIM card allows the subscriber complete freedom to switch between different networks without the need to exchange or reprogram the ME itself.The mobile station (MS) The SIM will also contain the subscriber’s secret authentication key. and the cipher key generation algorithm. A8. Inserting a SIM card into an ME effectively personalizes the equipment to the particular subscriber. A3. Ki..

Network and Switching Subsystem network subsystem fixed partner networks ISDN PSTN Components MSC (Mobile Services Switching Center): IWF (Interworking Functions) ISDN (Integrated Services Digital Network) PSTN (Public Switched Telephone Network) PSPDN (Packet Switched Public Data Net.) CSPDN (Circuit Switched Public Data Net.) MSC EIR SS7 HLR Databases VLR MSC IWF ISDN PSTN PSPDN CSPDN HLR (Home Location Register) VLR (Visitor Location Register) EIR (Equipment Identity Register) Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM .

system control Components ❍ Mobile Services Switching Center (MSC) controls all connections via a separated network to/from a mobile terminal within the domain of the MSC . interconnection to other networks. including data about all user currently in the domain of the VLR 07. permanent and semi-permanent data of all subscribers assigned to the HLR (one provider can have several HLRs) Visitor Location Register (VLR) local database for a subset of user data. high capacity.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-29 .several BSC can belong to a MSC ❍ Databases (important: scalability.04.Network and Switching Subsystem NSS is the main component of the public mobile network GSM ❍ switching. mobility management. low delay) Home Location Register (HLR) central master database containing user data.

04.Mobile Services Switching Center The MSC (mobile switching center) plays a central role in GSM ❍ ❍ ❍ ❍ ❍ Functions of a MSC ❍ ❍ ❍ ❍ ❍ ❍ ❍ switching functions additional functions for mobility support management of network resources interworking functions via Gateway MSC (GMSC) integration of several databases specific functions for paging and call forwarding termination of SS7 (signaling system no. data calls) support of short message service (SMS) generation and forwarding of accounting and billing information Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-30 07. 7) mobility specific signaling location registration and forwarding of location information provision of new services (fax.2007 .

g. 07.04. e.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-31 . functions to cope with location registration and handover. The MSC is similar to the switching exchange in a fixed network.The mobile services switching centre (MSC) The MSC is concerned with the routing of calls to and from the mobile users. However. The GSM specifications use the term MSC area to describe the part of a network that is covered by a particular MSC and its associated BSCs and BTSs. it must include additional functions to cope with the mobility of the subscribers. It possesses a large switching capability that varies between manufacturers. but a typical MSC will control a few tens of BSCs and it will have a capacity of several tens of thousands of subscribers.

the GMSC communicates with the relevant network databases to ensure that the call is routed to the appropriate MS. The network operator may also select one or a number of MSCs to act as gateway MSCs (GMSC).04. In the event of an incoming call from another network. giving the network operator the freedom to choose their MSCs and BSCs from different manufacturers. the GMSC provides the interface between the PLMN and external networks.The mobile services switching centre (MSC) The interface between the MSC and BSS is known as the A interface and it is fully defined in the specifications. The interface between different MSCs is called the E interface. As its name would suggest. 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-32 .

g. In a cellular network where subscribers are free to roam throughout the coverage area.g. 07. means are required for charging and billing subscribers. It will contain details of a particular user’s subscription. the services to which they have access. and some information relating to the location of each subscriber. e. e. The home location register (HLR) is used to store information that is specific to each subscriber.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-33 . the details of the MSC area within which the subscriber is currently registered.The GSM network databases In a commercial network. like GSM. maintaining accurate subscription records and preventing fraudulent network access. the network must also possess some way to track MSs so that it is able successfully to route incoming calls to them. All of these functions are supported using a combination of databases or location registers.04.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-34 .The GSM network databases The information contained within the HLR may be accessed using either the subscriber’s IMSI or mobile station international ISDN (MSISDN) number. Every GSM subscriber will have an entry in the HLR of their home network.04.e. user authentication and radio path encryption. The interface between an HLR and an MSC is called the C interface. The AuC will only ever communicate with the HLR and it does this using the H interface. It will contain the subscriber’s secret Ki key and the A3 and A8 security algorithms. 07. Another GSM database that is very closely associated with the HLR is the authentication centre (AuC). i. which is essentially the subscriber’s telephone number. The AuC is used to store information that is concerned with GSM’s security features.

The area that is served by a particular VLR is termed the VLR area. The main function of the VLR is to provide a local copy of the subscriber’s information for the purposes of call handling and it removes the need to continually access the HLR to retrieve information about a particular subscriber.The GSM network databases Another important database used in the GSM system is the visitor location register (VLR). This becomes important in a system such as GSM where subscribers may use networks in countries other than the country of their home network.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-35 . A VLR is associated with one or a number of MSCs and it contains information relating to those subscribers that are currently registered within the MSC area(s) of its associated MSC(s). 07.04.

The VLR will contain the details of the location area in which each subscriber is registered. an MS will be paged in each of the cells within its location area and this means that the MS may move freely between the cells of a location area without having to inform the network. 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-36 . In the event of an incoming call. each consisting of one or a number of cells or sectors. it must register in the new area using the location updating procedure.The GSM network databases The VLR also contains information that enables the network to ‘find’ a particular subscriber in the event of an incoming call. However. when an MS moves between cells belonging to different location areas.04. The process of locating a subscriber is facilitated by subdividing the network’s coverage area into a number of location areas (LAs).

The HLR will also ensure that the subscriber’s details are removed from the old VLR.The GSM network databases Where a subscriber moves between location areas controlled by different VLRs. its details are copied from the HLR to the new VLR. Each ME is assigned a unique 15-digit international mobile equipment identity (IMEI) at the point of manufacture. and vice versa. The interface between the HLR and the VLR is called the D interface and the interface between an MSC and its associated VLR is called the B interface. 07. The introduction of the SIM card in GSM means that tracking a subscriber no longer implies the tracking of a piece of equipment.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-37 . An interface also exists between different VLRs and this is termed the G interface. For this reason the equipment identity register (EIR) has been introduced to allow the network operator to track stolen and malfunctioning MEs.04.

07. This will contain the IMEIs of stolen and malfunctioning MEs.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-38 . The white list contains the series of IMEIs that have been allocated to MEs that may be used on the GSM network.The GSM network databases The EIR is used to store three different lists of IMEIs. the network has the ability to command an MS to supply its IMEI at any time. The black list contains the IMEIs of all MEs that must be barred from using the GSM network. During an access attempt or during a call. the network could terminate the call or access attempt and the subscriber will be sent an ‘illegal ME’ message. Finally. If the IMEI is on the black list or it is not on the white list. the network operator may also use a grey list to hold the IMEIs of MEs that must be tracked by the network for evaluation purposes.

The results of the IMEI check are then returned by the EIR to the relevant MSC.The GSM network databases Once an MS has failed an IMEI check it will be prevented from making any further access attempts. The interface between the EIR and the MSC is termed the F interface. 07. location updates or paging call responses.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-39 . this MS may still be used to make emergency calls. However. The IMEI check is performed within the EIR and the IMEI is passed to the EIR by the MSC that is currently serving the MS.

and maintenance of all GSM subsystems Operation subsystem (OSS) contains: operations and maintenance center (OMC). and manage the network.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-40 .04. management. an effective network management system is an important part of any telecommunications network. control. maintain. 07. It is also important for the network operator to be able to make changes to the network configuration with a minimum of effort and without affecting the service provided to its subscribers. network management center (NMC). These network elements work together to monitor.The management of GSM networks From an operator’s viewpoint. It is essential for the network operator to be able to identify problems in the network at an early stage and correct them quickly and efficiently. The OSS (Operation Subsystem) enables centralized operation. and administration center (ADC) .

) The NMC is concerned with the management of the entire network and it generally has a wider operational role than an OMC. with the administrative functions required within the network.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-41 .g. etc. OMC enables different control capabilities for the radio subsystem and the network subsystem ❍ Each OMC will typically be in charge of a subsystem.04.e. as its name would suggest. 07. The ADC is concerned.The management of GSM networks Operation and Maintenance Center (OMC) ❍ The OMC provides the means by which the operator manages the network. the MSC. e. NSS (i. HLR. the BSS or the Network Switching Subsystem. VLR.

the construction of the TDMA bursts. acutely affects the overall capacity of a cellular system. The performance of the radio interface.The GSM Radio Interface The radio interface provides the means by which an MS communicates with the BTSs of a GSM network whilst it moves within the coverage area. 07. and particularly its ability to provide acceptable speech links in the face of cochannel interference from other users within the system.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-42 .04. or packets. The main features of the GSM radio interface include the modulation scheme and the carrier frequencies used in GSM. and the way in which these may be demodulated in the presence of inter-symbol interference (ISI) caused by the radio channel and the modulation process itself.

Further. interleaving and ciphering processes that occur before transmission of user information.g. possibly with a certain number of errors. fax transmissions) and signaling information. GSM radio interface defines the different channels that are available in GSM and the manner in which the radio resources are allocated to each of the channels. user data (e.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-43 .04. These processes are different for speech information. are recovered at the receiver. These various function and processes enable to effectively build up the radio interface as a ‘bit pipe’ where data are applied to the transmitter and the same data. 07.The GSM Radio Interface The GSM radio interface also specifies the coding.

GSM Operation for Speech 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-44 .04.

The GSM modulation scheme The modulation scheme used in GSM is Gaussian minimum shift keying (GMSK) with a normalized bandwidth product. according to the input data and. 07.04. of 0. f1 and f2. . MSK is a special case of Binary FSK modulation. therefore.3 and the modulation symbol rate is around 271 kb/s.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-45 . This phase change is produced by instantaneously switching the carrier frequency between two different values. A logical ‘1’ will cause the carrier phase to increase by 90o over a bit period and a logical ‘0’ will cause the carrier phase to decrease by the same amount. The GMSK is based on a simpler modulation scheme known as minimum shift keying (MSK) in which the carrier amplitude remains constant and the information is carried in the form of phase/frequency variations. BT.

the modulated spectrum is. In MSK. is never transmitted. f2 = fc . in theory. MSK requires instantaneous changes in the carrier frequency and. consequently.2007 .Rb/4 where Rb is the modulation symbol rate (≈ 271 kb/s in GSM) and fc is the nominal carrier frequency. the carrier frequency. fc.04. infinitely wide. thereby compressing the bandwidth of the modulated signal. Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-46 07. The type of filter used has a Gaussian impulse response and the resulting modulation scheme is called Gaussian MSK or GMSK.The GSM modulation scheme The frequencies f1 and f2 are given by f1 = fc + Rb/4. The spectrum of an MSK modulated signal may be compressed by filtering the modulating baseband pulses to produce much smoother changes in frequency.

04. i.The GSM modulation scheme The relative bandwidth of the Gaussian filter defines the spectrum compression that is achieved. Unfortunately. a smaller filter bandwidth results in a narrower modulated spectrum. 07.3. This effectively means that each bit is spread over (or has an effect on) three modulation symbols. The BT product (T is the bit period and B is the 3 dB filter bandwidth) is the relative bandwidth of the baseband Gaussian filter and in GSM it is set to 0. GMSK is most attractive for its excellent power efficiency.e. The resulting ISI must be removed at the receiver using an equalizer. the Gaussian filter also introduces ISI whereby each modulation symbol spreads into adjacent symbols.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-47 .

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-48 .04. 07. The typical handheld units are Class 4 for GSM900 and Class 1 for DCS1800 and the typical GSM900 vehicular unit is Class 2. This process is used to conserve MS battery power and also reduce the up-link interference throughout the system. This facility is used to implement up-link power control. Each MS has the ability to reduce its output power in steps of 2 dB from its maximum down to a minimum of 5 dBm (3. whereby an MS’s transmitted power is adjusted to ensure that it is just sufficient to provide a satisfactory up-link quality.2 mW) for a GSM900MS and 0 dBm (1 mW) for a DCS1800MS in response to commands from a BTS.The GSM power classes The specifications define five classes of MS for GSM900 and two classes for DCS1800 based on their output power capabilities.1. These classes are shown in Table-6.

1: Mobile Station Power Classes Power Class 1 2 3 4 5 Maximum Output Power GSM900 20 W (43 dBm) 8 W (39 dBm) 5 W (37 dBm) 2 W (33 dBm) 0.8 W (29 dBm) Maximum Output Power DCS1800 1 W (30 dBm) 0.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-49 .The GSM power classes Table-6.25 W (24 dBm) 07.04.

eight classes of GSM900 BTS were defined. e. Three low power BTS classes were included in Phase 2 for each system and these are termed micro-BTSs. The actual output power of the BTS may be adjusted in at least six steps of around 2 dB to allow a fine adjustment of the coverage by the network operator.04. to allow power control to be implemented on the down-link. as they are intended for use in smaller cells.The GSM power classes In Phase 1 of the GSM specifications. micro-cells. The BTS classes defined in Phase 2 of the specifications are summarized in Table-6.5Wup to 20W. with maximum output powers ranging from 2.g.2. The BTS output power may also be adjusted by up to 15 steps.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-50 . and four classes of DCS1800 BTS were defined with maximum output powers ranging from 2. each of 2 dB. 07.5 W up to 320 W.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM .16 W 6-51 07.08)—0.00)—0.6 W (>0.The GSM power classes Table-6.03)—0.2: BTS Power Classes BTS Power Class 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Micro-BTS 1 Micro-BTS 2 Micro-BTS 3 Maximum Output Power GSM900 320—(<640) W 160—(<320) W 80—(<160) W 40—(<80) W 20—(<40) W 10—(<20) W 5—(<10) W 2.5—(<5) W (>0.05)—0.04.08 W (>0.5—(<5) W (>0.25 W (>0.16)—0.5)—1.5 W (>0.03 W Maximum Output Power DCS1800 20—(<40) W 10—(<20) W 5—(<10) W 2.

each 200 kHz wide (known as an RF carriers). MS to BTS) and 935MHz to 960MHz for the down-link (i. The available spectrum is partitioned into a number of bands.e. full duplex (Frequency Division Duplex –FDD).e. i. The GSM900 frequency bands defined in Phase 1 of the specifications are 890 MHz to 915 MHz for the up-link (i. respectively. 07.The GSM radio carriers GSM uses a combined time division multiple access (TDMA) and frequency division multiple access (FDMA) scheme. In Phase 2 of the specifications an extension frequency band has been added to allow GSM900 operators to provide more capacity in urban areas. Each of these bands may be occupied by a GMSK modulated RF carrier supporting a number of TDMA time slots. The RF carriers are paired to allow a simultaneous data flow in both directions.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-52 . BTS to MS).04.e.

04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-53 .2 MHz 915 MHz 1 20 MHz 124 200 kHz 890.2 MHz 1 t 07.GSM FDD/FDMA f 960 MHz 124 935.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-54 .04. each of which uses an eight-slot TDM system 07.The GSM radio carriers GSM uses 124 frequency channels.

GSM FDMA 1 2 3 4 … 124 200 KHz Carrier Spacing 100 KHz guard band BW = 25 MHz Downlink Frequency Band: 890-915 MHz Downlink Frequency Band: 935-960 MHz Bc = 200 KHz Bg = 100 KHz Number of Channels = 124 Data rate for each carrier = 270.25 bits Burst Types: 1.2007 . Synchronization burst 4. Random Access Burst (RAB) Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-55 07. Frequency Correction Burst 3.04.69 µs Slot time (or burst time) = 577 µs Number of bits/slot = 156.833 kbps Bit time = 3. Normal Burst (NB) 2.

07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-56 .The GSM radio carriers For this reason. respectively. In the case of the DCS1800 system. the frequency bands described above are sometimes called the primary GSM900 bands (P-GSM900).04. Each RF carrier frequency pair is assigned an absolute radio frequency channel number (ARFCN). There is a guard band of 200 kHz at the lower end of each frequency band and it is likely that the RF channels at either end of the allocations will not be used. The extended GSM900 bands (E-GSM900) are 880 MHz to 890 MHz and 925 MHz to 935 MHz for the up-link and down-link. the Phase 2 specifications define the 1710 MHz to 1785 MHz frequency band for the up-link transmissions and the 1805MHz to 1880 MHz frequency band for the down-link transmissions.

The GSM radio carriers
In addition to the frequency separation between the duplex carriers, which is 45 MHz for GSM900 and 95 MHz for DCS1800, the down-link and up-link bursts of a duplex link are separated by three timeslots. This removes the necessity for the MS to transmit and receive simultaneously. Where the propagation delay between the MS and BTS is very small, the MS will receive a down-link burst from the BTS, retune to the up-link frequency and transmit an up-link burst three timeslots later. Each duplex carrier supports a number of timeslots that are 15/26 ms (≈577 µs) in duration. These are arranged into TDMA frames consisting of eight time slots with a duration of 60/13 ms (≈4.615 ms).
07.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-57

GSM TDMA
TDMA frame = 4.615 ms Timeslot 0 Frequency 1 Frequency 2 : : Frequency 124 1 2 3 4 5 6 7

Ch 1 Ch 2 Ch 3 Ch 4 Ch 5 Ch 6 Ch 7 Ch 8 Ch 1 Ch 2 Ch 3 Ch 4 Ch 5 Ch 6 Ch 7 Ch 8

: :
Ch 1 Ch 2 Ch 3 Ch 4 Ch 5 Ch 6 Ch 7 Ch 8

ARFCN – Absolute Radio Frequency Channel Number
07.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-58

Radio interface - physical channels
TS0 Carrier 0 Carrier 0 T S S Typically used for signaling T T T T T T S TS1 S T

Carrier 1 Carrier 1

T

T

T

T TS2

T

T

T

T

T

T

T

T

Physical channel = time slot TS2 T T T T T T T T

Carrier 2 Carrier 2

T

T

T

T

Carrier 3 Carrier 3

T

T

T

T

T

T

T

T

T

T

T

T

Frame of length 8 time slots

Time Slot

07.04.2007

Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM

6-59

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-60 .04.The GSM radio carriers Each timeslot within a TDMA frame is numbered from zero to seven and these numbers repeat for each consecutive frame. The TDMA frame duration is 120/26 ms or 60/13 ms and the timeslot duration is 120/26x8 ms 0r 15/26 ms. 07. The time slot and frame durations are derived from the fact that 26 TDMA frames are transmitted in 120 ms.

FDMA/TDMA 935-960 MHz 124 channels (200 kHz) downlink fre qu e nc y 890-915 MHz 124 channels (200 kHz) uplink higher GSM frame structures time GSM TDMA frame 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 4.GSM FDD .5 µs 577 µs Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM .615 ms GSM time-slot (normal burst) guard space tail user data S Training S user data guard tail space 3 bits 57 bits 1 26 bits 1 57 bits 3 546.

04.FDMA/TDMA 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-62 .GSM FDD .

Each 200-kHz frequency band is divided into 8 channels defined by repetitive time slots. A time slot is at the lowest level and contains the following fields: ❍ Tail bits - allow synchronization of transmissions from mobile units ❍ Encrypted bits – 114 plaintext bits are encrypted into 114 encrypted bits, which are then placed into two 57-bit fields ❍ Stealing bit – indicates whether block contains data or is “stolen” for urgent control signaling

The GSM TDMA Slot Format

Training sequence

Guard bits – used to avoid overlapping with other bursts
Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM

Used to adapt parameters of receiver to the current path propagation characteristics and to select the strongest signal in case of multipath propagation A known bit pattern that differs for different adjacent cells Enables the mobile units and base stations to determine that the received signal is from the correct transmitter instead of a interfering transmitter
6-63

07.04.2007

GSM Air Interface

07.04.2007

Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM

6-64

The GSM bursts
Each GSM RF carrier supports eight timeslots and the data are transmitted in the form of bursts that are designed to fit within these slots. The GSM specifications define five different bursts as shown in Figure. The normal burst (NB) is the most commonly used burst in GSM. It consists of a 26-bit training sequence surrounded by two 58-bit information blocks. Three tail bits are added at the beginning and the end of the burst. The total duration of the burst is 148 bits leaving a guard period equivalent in duration to 8.25 bits. The training sequence is used to ‘sound’ the radio channel and produce an estimate of its impulse response at the receiver. This estimate is used in the demodulation process to equalize the effects of multi-path propagation.
07.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-65

GSM Data Bursts 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-66 .04.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-67 . This carrier is called the broadcast control channel (BCCH) carrier and it acts as a form of beacon and MSs will search for BCCH carriers to detect the presence of a GSM network.04. 07. this results in a pure sine wave at a frequency around 68 kHz (1625/24 kHz) higher than the RF carrier centre frequency. The frequency correction burst is also used by MSs as a frequency reference for their internal time bases. Every bit in the frequency correction burst (including the tail bits) is set to zero and. after GMSK modulation.The GSM bursts The frequency correction burst (FB) is used by the MS to detect a special carrier which is transmitted by every BTS in a GSM network.

for this reason. As its name suggests. The synchronization burst is the first burst that the MS has to demodulate and. It also allows larger multi-path delay spreads to be resolved.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-68 . the training sequence is extended to 64 bits. All synchronization bursts use the same training sequence for bit number 42 to bit number 105 in the burst.The GSM bursts The synchronization burst (SB) carries 78 bits of coded data formed into two blocks of 39 bits on either side of a 64-bit training sequence. This extended sequence provides a larger autocorrelation peak than the 26-bit sequence of the normal burst. 07. this burst carries details of the GSM frame structure and allows an MS to fully synchronize with the BTS. An MS can use this training sequence to synchronize to the BTS transmissions to within a quarter-bit accuracy. The arrangement of the training sequence is as shown below.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-69 .25 bit periods. The number of tail bits at the beginning of the burst is increased to eight. 07. the training sequence is extended to ease the demodulation process.The GSM bursts The fourth GSM burst is the access burst (AB). The tail bits at the end of the burst are all set to zero. As with the synchronization burst. The AB is much shorter than the other bursts and this results in a large guard period of 68. The access burst is used by the MS to access the network initially and it is the first up-link burst that a BTS will have to demodulate from a particular MS.04. This consists of a 41-bit training sequence followed by 36 information bits.

As a result of its small size. Accordingly.25 bit periods.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-70 . the AB carries relatively little information and this has an impact on the access procedure. equivalent to 252 µs. However. 07.The GSM bursts This guard period is included to compensate for the propagation delay between the MS and BTS. allows the MS to be up to 38 km from the BTS before its up-link bursts will spill into the next time slot. a guard period of 68.04. this is not possible on the AB. a closed loop timing advance mechanism is activated to ensure that the MS uplink bursts arrive at the BTS within the correct time slots. Once a duplex link has been established.

The GSM bursts The fifth type of burst is the dummy burst (DB) and is similar to the NB in that it has the same structure and uses the same training sequences. The RF output spectrum of the transmitted signals in a TDMA system is not only determined by the modulation process. which must be transmitted continuously and at a constant power. The switching transients tend to widen the spectrum of the transmitted signal. but also by the switching transients that occur when the bursts of RF energy are transmitted. instead of just keying the transmitter on and off.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-71 . The main difference between the DB and the NB is that the information bits on either side of the training sequence are set to a predefined sequence in the DB. 07. although this effect can be reduced by ramping the output power up and down when transmitting a burst. The DB is used to fill inactive time slots on the BCCH carrier.04.

the active part of an NB is 148 bit periods in duration. namely the variation in transmitted power with time is used for the GSM bursts. As already mentioned. During that part of the burst when information is transmitted. The power ramping mask. The useful part of a burst in all cases is one bit period shorter than the active part and it begins halfway through the first bit period.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-72 .04. which is performed at the beginning and end of the time slot. the amplitude of the modulated RF signal must stay approximately constant. 07.The GSM bursts The information transmitted in the burst must not be affected by the process of power ramping.

The GSM receiver Although the GSM specifications do not define the manner in which the transmitted information should be recovered at the BTS or MS receiver. At the receiver the burst is demultiplexed to give the training sequence and the data bits. The performance of each GSM receiver is tested such that a minimum performance standard may be maintained across all GSM type-approved equipment.04.2007 . Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-73 07. the bursts have been specifically designed with the Viterbi equalizer in mind. The received waveform will contain ISI caused by the radio transmission channel and the GMSK modulation process. The training sequence is used to estimate the impulse response of the radio channel in the channel estimator. The Viterbi equalizer is used to recover the information from each GSM burst in the presence of the ISI caused by the radio channel and the GMSK modulation process.

from rural to dense urban.04. Each channel model consists of a number of independently fading impulses. To this end.The GSM receiver performance The performances of the MS and BTS receivers are specified by defining a maximum allowable BER for each of the different GSM channels for a given set of radio channel conditions. at different time delays.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-74 . As the GSM system has been designed to operate in many different environments. or paths. the GSM specifications define four different channel models and these are used to specify the performances of the MS and BTS receivers. however. it is important that the specifications reflect this by specifying the performance of the MS and BTS receivers over a wide range of different operational environments. the mobile radio channel cannot be separated into its different paths. the channel models have been defined in this manner so that they may be easily implemented in wideband channel simulators for equipment testing. 07. In practice.

04. whether user traffic or signaling information. The data. one for the up-link and the other for the down-link transmissions.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-75 GSM Physical and logical channels . Um interface: various logical channels are mapped to physical channels 07. This combination of time slot and carrier frequency forms what is termed a physical channel. are mapped on to the physical channels by defining a number of logical channels.When an MS and a BTS communicate. One RF channel will support eight physical channels in time slots zero through to seven. A logical channel will carry information of a specific type and a number of these channels may be combined before being mapped onto the same physical channel. they do so on a specific pair of radio frequency (RF) carriers. and within a given time slot in each consecutive TDMA frame.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-76 .used to carry voice or data traffic CCH – Control Channel .6 kb/s 07.4 kb/s Physical channel = full rate traffic channel (1 timeslot) or 2 half rate traffic channels (1 timeslot in alternating frames) Full rate channel may carry 13 kb/s speech or data at 12. TCH. 6.6 kb/s Half rate channel may carry 6. CCH and CBCH TCH – Traffic Channel . or 3.5 kb/s speech or data at 6 or 3.8 kb/s or half rate (TCH/H) at 11.used for control functions CBCH – Call Broadcast Channel .used for broadcast functions Logical traffic channels = full rate (TCH/F) at 22.GSM Logical Channels 3 groups of logical channels.04.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM .GSM Logical Channel Structure TCH TCH/F BCH TCH/H CCCH DCCH CCH CBCH FCCH SCH BCCH PCH AGCH RACH SACCH ACCH SDCCH FACCH 6-77 07.04.

04.GSM Radio interface .logical channels Traffic channels Traffic channels TCH/F TCH/F TCH/H TCH/H Control channels (for signaling) Control channels (for signaling) Broadcast Broadcast SCH SCH FCCH FCCH BCCH BCCH Common control Common control PCH PCH AGCH AGCH Dedicated Dedicated SDCCH SDCCH SACCH SACCH FACCH FACCH bidirectional downlink uplink RACH RACH 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-78 .

referred to as TCH/F9.6. respectively. 07.Traffic channels GSM defines two types of traffic channel (TCH). i. The full-rate TCH allows speech transmission at 13 kb/s and in the specifications it is termed a TCH/FS channel to show that it is a full-rate TCH carrying speech information.6. The full-rate TCH also allows user data transmission at the primary user rates of 9.04. A full-rate TCH will occupy a complete physical channel.e.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-79 . TCH/F4. 4.8 and TCH/F2.8 and 2.4. one timeslot in each TDMA frame and on each up.4 kb/s.and downlink carrier.

The half-rate channel uses one timeslot in every other TDMA frame. on average. respectively. and this means that each physical channel can support two half-rate TCHs. called TCH/H4.8 and TCH/H2. The TCHs always use the normal burst.8 and 2.4 kb/s.4.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-80 . 07.Traffic channels The half-rate TCH allows speech transmission at around 7 kb/s (TCH/HS) and data at primary user rates of 4.04. The half-rate channel is primarily intended to support the GSM half-rate speech coder.

07. the common control channels are used by an MS during the paging and access procedures. Signaling information is carried between an MS and a BTS using associated control channels during a call. and they can generally be divided into four categories according to the manner in which they are supported on the radio interface and the type of signaling information they carry. Finally.Control channels Control channels carry signaling information between an MS and a BTS.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-81 . The broadcast channels are used to broadcast synchronization and general network information to all the MSs within a cell. There are several forms of control channels in GSM. . while standalone dedicated control channels are employed outside of a call.04.

these bursts produce a pure sine wave at a frequency of around 68 kHz (1625/24 kHz) above the carrier frequency.e. 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-82 . The FCCH consists solely of frequency correction bursts which consist of an all-zero bit pattern. i.Broadcast channels Broadcast channels are transmitted in the down-link direction only.04. After GMSK modulation. they are only transmitted by the BTS. The frequency correction channel (FCCH) is the simplest GSM logical channel because all its information bits are set to zero. The FCCH is used by the MS in the initial stages of BTS acquisition to correct its internal frequency sources and recover the carrier phase of the BTS transmissions.

the SCH also contains a six-bit base station identity code (BSIC). In addition to the frame synchronization information. 07. termed the BCCH carrier. We will examine this framing structure in the next section.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-83 . an MS can fully synchronize its frame counters with those of a BTS. An MS is required to measure the received signal strength of a special beacon carrier. Using the information supplied on the SCH.04.Broadcast channels The synchronization channel (SCH) contains full details of its own position within the GSM framing structure. The SCH information is transmitted using synchronization bursts. This information is reported to the network where it is used to determine whether the MS is connected to the most appropriate BTS or whether it should be switched to a more suitable BTS. This carrier is transmitted at a constant power by each of the MS’s neighboring BTSs.

Broadcast channels The broadcast control channel (BCCH) is used to broadcast control information to every MS within a cell. The cell broadcast channel (CBCH) is used to transmit short alpha numeric text messages to all the MSs within a particular cell. These messages appear on the MS’s display and a subscriber may choose to receive different messages by selecting different pages. a list of the BCCH carrier frequencies used at the neighboring BTSs and a number of parameters that are used by the MS when accessing the BTS. Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-84 07. similar to the way the teletext system works on broadcast television.2007 . The BCCH and the CBCH both use the normal burst. This information includes details of the control channel configuration used at the BTS.04.

e. For example. measurement data. This type of signaling is supported using logical control channels which occupy the same physical channel as the traffic data. 07. i. a certain amount of signaling information must flow across the radio interface in order to maintain the call. This channel is always present when a dedicated link is active between the MS and BTS.04. SACCH messages may be sent once every 480 ms. Non-urgent information.Associated control channels When an MS is engaged in a call. and it occupies one timeslot in every 26.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-85 . an MS will continually report the received level of the BCCH carriers of its neighboring BTSs. e. is transmitted using the slow associated control channel (SACCH).g. approximately every 2 s.

This channel is known as the fast associated control channel (FACCH) because of its ability to transfer information between the BTS and MS more quickly than the SACCH. e. A FACCH signaling block is used to exactly replace a single (20 ms) speech block and a complete FACCH message may be sent once every 20 ms.g.Associated control channels More urgent information. a handover command.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-86 . 07.04. Both the SACCH and FACCH use the normal burst and they are both up-link and down-link channels. is sent using time slots that are ‘stolen’ from the traffic channel.

however.Stand-alone dedicated control channel In some situations. 07. This channel is known as a stand-alone dedicated control channel (SDCCH). This could be accommodated by allocating either a full-rate or halfrate TCH and by using either the SACCH or FACCH to carry the information. signaling information must flow between a network and an MS when a call is not in progress. i.g. The channel is termed ‘stand-alone’ because it may exist independently of any TCH.e. dedicated to a particular MS. during a location update.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-87 . a lower data rate channel has been defined which has around one-eighth of the capacity of a full-rate TCH. be a waste of the limited radio resources since the data transfer requirements of a process such as location updating are far less than those of speech transmissions.04. For this reason. e. and it is termed ‘dedicated’ because it is only used by one particular MS. This would.

04.Stand-alone dedicated control channel In some ways the SDCCH is similar to a TCH since they are both used to provide a dedicated connection between a BTS and an MS. Alternatively. The SDCCH also has an associated SACCH. Since the SDCCH always carries signaling traffic there is no frame stealing and consequently it does not need an FACCH.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-88 . one could argue that the SDCCH is constantly in the FACCH mode. . 07. The SDCCH operates on both the up-link and down-link and the normal burst is always used.

or deny.g. to be used for subsequent communications. though not simultaneously. The normal burst is always used on the PCH.04. i. The paging channel (PCH) is a down-link only channel that is used by the system to page individual MSs. There are two different PCHs. The AGCH is used by the network to grant.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-89 . The AGCH is a down-link only channel and it uses the normal burst. i. in the event of an incoming call.Common control channels The common control channels may be used by any MS within a cell. for use in cells with a limited capacity. 07. a particular time slot may be used by either channel. a full-rate PCH and a reduced rate PCH. an MS access to the network by supplying it with details of a dedicated channel.e. TCH or SDCCH. e. The access grant channel (AGCH) shares the same physical resources as the PCH.e.

it will attempt to access the BTS again after waiting a certain period of time. e. it will continue to occur for every subsequent access attempt. This could result in neither access attempt being successful as the two signals collide at the BTS.04.g. Therefore the delay between access attempts is randomized to reduce the likelihood of collisions at the BTS. then once a collision occurs between two MSs. at call set-up or prior to a location update.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-90 . The MS will always transmit access bursts on the RACH. If an MS receives no response from the BTS. If this period of time was the same for every MS.Common control channels The random access channel (RACH) is an up-link only channel that is used by an MS to initially access the network. It is termed ‘random’ because there is no mechanism to ensure that no more than one MS transmits in each RACH time slot and there is a finite probability that two mobiles could attempt to access the same RACH at the same time. 07.

NO Is FCCH detected? YES Scan channel for SCH NO Is SCH detected? YES Read data from BCCH and determine is it BCCH? From the channel data update the control channel list NO Is the current BCCH channel included? Camp on BCCH and start decoding 07.Power On Scan Channels. monitor RF levels Select the channel with highest RF level among the control channels Scan the channel for the FCCH Select the channel with next highest Rf level from the control list.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-91 YES .04.

Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-92 07. A single physical channel will also support two half-rate traffic channels (TCH/H) and their SACCHs or eight SDCCHs and their associated SACCHs. When combined these channels fit exactly into a single physical channel.04. Note that the mapping between the TCH and the physical channel is the same regardless of whether the TCH is used to carry speech or user data.2007 .Mapping logical channels onto physical channels The various logical channels may be combined in one of six different ways. before being mapped onto a single physical channel. The simplest mapping is the full-rate traffic channel (TCH/F) and its SACCH.

04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-93 .Mapping logical channels onto physical channels 07.

e. AGCH and RACH may not be justified. cells with a smaller number of RF carriers. AGCH and RACH channel is justified. i. each BTS will only have one BCCH carrier. In smaller capacity cells.Mapping logical channels onto physical channels The basic broadcast and common control channel combination consists of a single FCCH.04. the capacity of the full-rate PCH. This type of channel configuration is generally used in medium capacity or large capacity cells where the access capacity of a fullrate PCH. This control channel combination may only occur on time slot zero of a carrier. SCH and BCCH on the down-link. i.e. The up-link is entirely dedicated to the RACH. 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-94 . and for this reason we shall term this a full-rate RACH. or sector. along with a full-rate PCH and a full-rate AGCH. The carrier that supports these channels at a BTS is called the BCCH carrier and it will be unique within each cell.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-95 .Mapping logical channels onto physical channels 07.04.

however. the rate of the down-link PCH and AGCH is reduced to around one-third of their full rate. The down-link continues to support an FCCH.Mapping logical channels onto physical channels For this reason. 07. The extra slots that have been created as a result of this rate reduction on the down-link are used to support four SDCCHs and their associated SACCHs. a second combination of the access channels is employed. Again.04. The SDCCHs will also occupy a number of up-link slots and the number of timeslots allocated to the RACH on the up-link is reduced accordingly. This will effectively halve the number of time slots allocated to the RACH.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-96 . this control channel combination may only occur on time slot zero of the BCCH carrier. SCH and BCCH.

04. Note that each BTS must only transmit a single FCCH and SCH and.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-97 . these channels are not included in the extension channel set. four and six of the BCCH carrier. Firstly. 07. and secondly.Mapping logical channels onto physical channels The final control channel combination is defined for use in large capacity cells where the access capacity of a single PCH. Each extension set contains its own BCCH for two reasons. This channel combination may only occur on slot two. consequently. the BCCH contains information that applies only to the RACH occupying the same time slot within the TDMA frame. This combination consists of a BCCH and a full-rate PCH and AGCH on the down-link and a full-rate RACH on the up-link. or slots two. or slots two and four. it is easier for the MS to monitor bursts occurring on the same physical channel. AGCH and RACH is insufficient.

The GSM frame structure The basic TDMA frame structure employed in GSM specifies that each carrier supports eight timeslots. and a physical channel occupies one timeslot in each frame. is the multiframe which consists of 26 TDMA frames in the case of the full-rate and half-rate traffic channels. The TDMA frame represents the lowest layer in a complex hierarchical frame structure. or 51 frames for all of the other logical channels.04. 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-98 . above the TDMA frame. The next level in the GSM frame structure.

2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-99 .25 traffic or signaling info in burst? TDMA frame (4.25 8.04.615 ms): TS7 TS0 TS1 TS2 TS3 TS4 TS5 TS6 TS7 TS0 TS1 TS7 TS0 TS1 TS2 TS3 TS4 TS5 TS6 TS7 TS0 TS1 TDMA multiframe: 11 22 33 44 55 66 77 88 SACCH 99 10 11 12 13 14 15 10 11 12 13 14 15 Idle = 26 TDMA frames (in case of TCH) 23 24 25 26 23 24 25 26 07.The GSM frame structure GSM normal burst: 156.25 bits (0.577 ms) 33 57 encrypted bits 57 encrypted bits 11 26 training bits 26 training bits 11 57 encrypted bits 57 encrypted bits 33 8.

and the remaining timeslot in TDMA frame 26 not used for transmission.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-100 . and for this reason it is termed an ‘idle’ time slot. This may be applied to both the up-link and down-link by noting that there is an offset of three burst periods between the frame timing on the up-link and down-link. 1 TDMA frame = 120 ms/26 ≈ 4. The next 12 timeslots in each TDMA frame of the multiframe are used by the TCH/F.04.g. The traffic multiframe is exactly 120 ms in duration and this defines many of the time periods that are used in GSM. are used by the TCH/F itself.e. .The GSM frame structure The frame structure for a full-rate traffic channel (TCH/F) occupying time slot one in each TDMA frame is shown in Figure. e.615 ms. zero to 11. The first 12 time slots in each TDMA frame of the multiframe. The next time slot is used by the SACCH. i. 07.

Traffic multiframe structure 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-101 .04.

Traffic Channel Structure for Full Rate Coding Slots 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 1 2 Bursts for Users allocated in Slot 1 2 T T 3 T 4 T 5 T 6 T 7 8 T T 9T 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 T T T T S T T T T 26 I T = Traffic S = Signal( contains information about the signal strength in neighboring cells) 07.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-102 .

04.Traffic Channel Structure for Half Rate Coding Slots 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 1 2 Burst for one users 1 2 T 3 T 4 5 T 6 7 T 8 9 10 T T 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 T S T T 26 Bursts for another users allocated in alternate Slots 1 2 3 4 5 6 T 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16 17 T T T T 26 S = T T T T T 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-103 .

The GSM frame structure The organization of the half-rate traffic channel (TCH/H) is a little more complicated than the TCH/F. two TCH/H can be accommodated within the one TCH/F.5 h. and in the case of the TCH/F and the TCH/H consists of 51 multiframes. The duration of a superframe is 6.04.12 s. The half-rate traffic channel (TCH/H) uses alternate slots in a multiframe. The final level in the frame structure is the hyperframe and this consists of 2048 superframes and has duration of around 3.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-104 . Figures on next slides show that the next level in the frame structure above the multiframe is the superframe. this way. 07.

615 ms) 156.4 ms) 8 slots: Frame (4.577 ms) 07.GSM Frame Hierarchy 2048 super frames: Hyper frame (3 hr 28 min 53.76 s) 51 traffic or 26 control multi frames: Super frame (6.04.12 s) 26 traffic frames: Multi frame (120 ms) 51control frames: Multi frame (235.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-105 .25 bits: Burst (0.

. 25 48 49 50 120 ms 235. 6 7 4. 48 24 49 50 25 6.4 ms ...... . superframe 0 0 1 1 multiframe 0 1 0 1 . 2 frame 0 1 slot burst 07.615 ms 577 µs 6-106 ..GSM hierarchy of frames hyperframe 0 1 2 .04...12 s 24 .76 s 2 ...2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 2045 2046 2047 3 h 28 min 53..

Figure shows the basic control channel arrangement that would be present on time slot zero of the BCCH carrier. the second time slot of the group is assigned to the SCH and contains a synchronization burst. There are four different control channel combinations and each of these uses the 51-frame multiframe. 07. The down-link multiframe is subdivided into five groups of 10 time slots with a single idle slot at the end.04. use the 51-frame multiframe. The first timeslot of each of the groups is assigned to the FCCH and contains the frequency correction burst. except the TCH/F and TCH/H.The GSM frame structure The frame structure for a control channel set on timeslot zero is shown in Figure on next slide. Similarly. In this case the multiframe consists of 51 TDMA frames and lasts around 235 ms.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-107 . All channels.

04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-108 .Traffic multiframe structure 07.

The PCH/AGCH timeslots may be assigned to either channel on a block-by-block basis.04. In this case these four slots will be assigned to either the BCCH.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-109 . all timeslots are assigned to the RACH. except the idle burst at the end of the multiframe.e. PCH or AGCH on a blockby-block basis. the four timeslots following the FCCH and SCH slots are assigned to the BCCH. where a block consists of four timeslots (defined by the interleaving block size).The GSM frame structure In the first group. i. On the up-link. 07. PCH or AGCH. We note that the four timeslots following the BCCH slots shown in Figure may also be assigned to the BCCH. are assigned to the PCH and AGCH. The remaining down-link timeslots. Each block will contain sufficient information for the MS to identify the channel.

12 s in duration.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-110 .04.The GSM frame structure The control channel superframe consists of 26 multiframes and is 6.5 h.16 show that the hyperframe provides the final level in the GSM frame structure for both the traffic and control channels. and for this reason the multiframe structure in use on each physical channel may only change at superframe boundaries. This is exactly the same length as the traffic channel superframe. 07. Figures 2. It consists of 2048 superframes and lasts for around 3. The superframe represents the smallest time cycle for which the traffic channel and control channel relationships are repeated. Each of the 2715648 timeslots in the hyperframe has a unique number and this is used in the ciphering and frequency hopping algorithms.14 and 2.

Registration MS 1. Authentication Request 7. Authentication Response 8. Activation Response 3. Location Update Request 6. Channel Request 2. ACK for TMSI 11. Assigning TMSI 10.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-111 BTS BSC MSC VLR HLR .04. Channel Assigned 5. Activation ACK 4. Authentication Check 9. Channel Release 07. Entry for VLR and HLR 12.

2: connection request 3.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-112 . 4: security check 5-8: check resources (free circuit) 9-10: set up call PSTN VLR 3 4 6 GMSC 5 MSC 7 8 2 9 MS 1 10 BSS 07.Mobile Originated Call 1.04.

Mobile Terminated Call 1: calling a GSM subscriber 2: forwarding call to GMSC 3: signal call setup to HLR 4.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-113 . 5: request MSRN from VLR 6: forward responsible calling station 1 MSC to GMSC 7: forward call to current MSC 8. 13: MS answers 14. 15: security checks 16.04. 9: get current status of MS 10. 17: set up connection HLR 4 5 7 VLR 3 6 PSTN 8 9 14 15 MSC 2 GMSC 10 BSS 10 13 16 BSS 10 BSS 11 11 11 12 17 MS 11 07. 11: paging of MS 12.

04.MTC/MOC MS MTC paging request channel request immediate assignment paging response authentication request BTS MS MOC channel request immediate assignment service request authentication request BTS authentication response ciphering command ciphering complete setup call confirmed assignment command assignment complete alerting connect connect acknowledge data/speech exchange authentication response ciphering command ciphering complete setup call confirmed assignment command assignment complete alerting connect connect acknowledge data/speech exchange 07.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-114 .

Send Destination Address (SDCCH) 9. Channel Assigned (AGCH) 3. Channel Request (RACH) 2. Connection Established (FACCH) 15. Call Establishment Request (SDCCH) 4. Ciphering Ready (SDCCH) 8. Authentication Response (SDCCH) 6. Information Exchange (TCH) 07. Ciphering Command (SDCCH) 7. Authentication Request (SDCCH) 5. Traffic Channel Established (FACCH) 12.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-115 BTS BSC MSC . Call Accepted (FACCH) 14. Assign Traffic Channel (SDCCH) 11. Available/Busy Signal (FACCH) 13.04.GSM Channel Use Example MS 1. Routing Response (SDCCH) 10.

Example: Incoming Call Setup MS ↓ BSS/MSC MS ↑ BSS/MSC MS ↓ BSS/MSC MS ↑ BSS/MSC MS ↓ BSS/MSC MS ↑ BSS/MSC MS ↓ BSS/MSC MS ↑ BSS/MSC MS ↓ BSS/MSC MS ↑ BSS/MSC MS ↓ BSS/MSC MS ↑ BSS/MSC MS ↑ BSS/MSC MS ↑ BSS/MSC MS ↓ BSS/MSC MS ⌦BSS/MSC --------------------------------------------------------------------------------Paging request Channel request Immediate Assignment Paging Response Authentication Request Authentication Response Cipher Mode Command Cipher Mode Compl.04.2007 Personal and Mobile Communications – GSM 6-116 . Alert Connect Connect Acknowledge Data (PCH) (RACH) (AGCH) (SDCCH) (SDCCH) (SDCCH) (SDCCH) (SDCCH) (SDCCH) (SDCCH) (SDCCH) (FACCH) (FACCH) (FACCH) (FACCH) (TCH) 07. Setup Call Confirmation Assignment Command Assignment Compl.

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