4G LTE Backhaul Planning

Course Description:

This course provides a detailed overview of the backhaul environment encountered in modern 4G LTE mobile networks. It offers a view of some of the basic building blocks of backhaul network service and design, including a discussion of backhaul functionality and architecture, as well as a view of the emerging ‘next generation’ technologies being deployed to support data-hungry mobile networks. The various technological options that exist at Layer 1, Layer 2 and Layer 3 of the backhaul protocol stack are examined, including discussions of options such as Optical Fibre and Gigabit Microwave (Layer 1), Carrier Ethernet and MPLS (Layer 2) and IP, NTPv4, IEEE 1588v2 and Sync-E (Layer 3).

Who will Benefit:

Technical personnel responsible for the planning, operation and maintenance of microwave radio systems Engineering and technical management staff who are involved in the design, deployment or operation of mobile back-haul networks.


A working knowledge of mobile network architecture and procedures would be an advantage as would a basic understanding of IP.

Technical Level:



Mode of Delivery:

Consultant led classes with exercises, videos and demonstration applets.

• describe the functionality of MPLS (Multi-Protocol Label Service)
• describe the generic requirements related to IP RANs
• outline the need for robust synchronisation in a backhaul network and describe some of the packet-based synchronisation options that exist
• outline the need for connection redundancy and service resilience in backhaul networks and describe some of the packet-based options that exist
• describe some of the QoS options that exist for packet-based backhaul
• describe the use and configuration of VLANs in IP-based backhaul networks
• outline the set of backhaul architectures and options that have been developed by the NGMN (Next Generation Mobile Network) Alliance
On completion of this course the delegate will be able to:
• describe the layout of a backhaul network including the access, aggregation and core sections
• provide an overview of the types of Layer 1 systems that have been and are employed by backhaul networks
• outline some of the generic backhaul architecture options describe the types and capacities of optical fibre
• describe the functionality of microwave transmission systems
• describe the functionality of Packet-based microwave systems that employ protocols such as Gigabit Ethernet
• describe the set of generic Layer 2 options commonly employed by backhaul systems
• describe the functionality and structure of Ethernet.
• describe Carrier Ethernet and outline the set of services it offers

Mobile Backhaul Requirements
• Defining Backhaul
• Access Network Backhaul
• Traditional Backhaul Requirements
• Radio Network Evolution and IP Convergence
• Evolved Network Backhaul Requirements
• Motivation for Packet Transport
• 4G LTE Protocol Stacks
• 4G RAN Example
• Small Cell Backhaul Examples
• 3GPP Transport Network Definitions
• Transport Network Layered Architecture
• HSPA/LTE Cell Throughput Expectations
• Industry Initiatives and Forums

Layer 1 Options
• Evolving Backhaul Transmission Options
• Backhaul Architectures
• Broadband-based Backhaul
• Optical Fibre
• Types of Optical Fibre
• Capacities and Distance Limitations
• Microwave
• Types of Modulation
• Dual Ethernet/TDM Radio
• Gigabit Ethernet Microwave
• NLOS Wireless Backhaul

Layer 2 Options
• Generic Layer 2 Options
• Ethernet (1)
• Ethernet (2)
• Ethernet Physical Layer Family
• Ethernet Frame Structure
• VLANs and 802.1q
• Q-in-Q VLAN Stacking
• VLAN Stacking Implementations
• VLANs for Radio Access Networks
• Ethernet Line Services – EVPL
• Ethernet Label Switching (ELS)
• Carrier Ethernet Summary
• The MPLS Architecture
• MPLS Shim Header
• MPLS Packet Forwarding
• Architecture of MPLS-based IP-VPNs
• VPLS (Virtual Private LAN Service)
• VPLS Services Layer 3 Options
• Access Networks and the eNB (E-UTRAN Node B)
• S1 Interface
• X2 Interface
• X2 Deployment and Routing
• Switching vs Routing
• LTE S1/X2 Interface Options
• IP RAN Backhaul Requirements
• Synchronisation Options
• Legacy TDM Synchronisation
• Packet Network-based Synchronisation
• NTPv4
• IEEE 1588v2/PTP
• Sync-E
• Redundancy and Protection
• G.8031/G.8032 Protection
• RAN QoS Requirements
• DiffServ
• Carrier Ethernet CoS
• RAN Security Requirements
• IPsec Modes and Services
• IPsec Access Architecture
• SeGW (Security Gateway)

Typical Backhaul Solutions
• Access Network VLANs
• Single-Operator, Single-RAT VLANs
• Single Operator, Multi-RAT VLANs
• NGMN Backhaul Models
• NGMN Backhaul Scenarios
• NGMN Scenario 1: Carrier Ethernet Backhaul
• Scenario 1 Protocol Stack – End-End Carrier Ethernet
• NGMN Scenario 2: Carrier Ethernet + L2/L3 VP
• Scenario 2a Protocol Stack – L2 VP
• Scenario 2b Protocol Stack – L3 VP
• Backhaul Example – Virgin Media
• Protocol Stack – via operator-owned microwave
• Protocol Stack – via VM-supplied GigE Tail Circuit
• Sync Distribution