This blog is dedicated to describing the main components of the 5G Core Network as defined by the ongoing efforts at 3GPP SA .
The 5G system is being designed to support data connectivity and services which would enable deployment, by the industry, using new techniques such as Network Function Virtualization and Software Defined Networking.
The need for these new techniques rises due to the various different profiles of data services that need to be supported by the 5G network. So far mobile networks had been designed keeping the average smartphone user in the center but with 5G this is changing as with the boom of data connectivity various use cases having completely different data requirements have come up and the network operator needs to satisfy all these requirements as efficiently as possible.
Having such requirements in mind the 3GPP has kept the basic idea of having a flat architecture where the Control Plane (CP) functions are separated from the User Plane (UP) in order to make them scaling independent allowing operators to use this functional split for dimensioning, deploying and adapting the network to their needs easily. Another central idea in the design of 5G has been to minimize dependencies between the Access Network (AN) and the Core Network (CN) with a converged access-agnostic core network with a common AN – CN interface which integrates different 3GPP and non-3GPP access types.
In order to facilitate the enablement of different data services and requirements the elements of the 5GC, also called Network Functions, have been further simplified with most of them being software based so that they could be adapted according to need. The 5G System architecture consists of the following network functions (NF) majority of which constitute the 5GC:
– Authentication Server Function (AUSF)
– Core Access and Mobility Management Function (AMF)
– Data network (DN), e.g. operator services, Internet access or 3rd party services
– Structured Data Storage network function (SDSF)
– Unstructured Data Storage network function (UDSF)
– Network Exposure Function (NEF)
– NF Repository Function (NRF)
– Policy Control function (PCF)
– Session Management Function (SMF)
– Unified Data Management (UDM)
– User plane Function (UPF)
– Application Function (AF)
– User Equipment (UE)
– (Radio) Access Network ((R)AN)
The modularity of the network functions also opens up the possibility to enable another new and efficient feature i.e. Network Slicing.
For more insight go to source HERE.
Marcin Dryjanski received his M.Sc. degree in telecommunications from the Poznan University of Technology in Poland in June 2008. During the past 8 years, Marcin has served as R&D Engineer, Lead Researcher, R&D Consultant, Technical Trainer and Technical Leader. He has been providing expert level courses in the area of LTE/LTE-Advanced for leading mobile operators and vendors. Marcin provides consulting services to business projects in the area of 5G related topics. In addition to that, Marcin was a workpackage leader in EU-funded research projects aiming at radio interface design for 5G including FP-7 5GNOW and FP-7 SOLDER. He co-authored a number of research papers targeting 5G radio interface design. To contact Marcin please write to: firstname.lastname@example.org