The present document specifies the standards for Signalling Transport to be used across the E1 interface. The E1 interface provides means for the interconnection of gNB-CU-CP and gNB-CU-UP within the NG-RAN architecture (TS 38.401), or for the interconnection of ng-eNB-CU-CP and ng-eNB-CU-UP within the NG-RAN architecture (TS 38.401), or for the interconnection of eNB-CP and eNB-UP within the E-UTRAN architecture (TS 36.401).
The following documents contain provisions which, through reference in this text, constitute provisions of the present document.
References are either specific (identified by date of publication, edition number, version number, etc.) or non specific.
For a specific reference, subsequent revisions do not apply.
For a non-specific reference, the latest version applies. In the case of a reference to a 3GPP document (including a GSM document), a non-specific reference implicitly refers to the latest version of that document in the same Release as the present document.
For the purposes of the present document, the terms and definitions given in TR 21.905 and the following apply. A term defined in the present document takes precedence over the definition of the same term, if any, in TR 21.905.
interface between a gNB-CU-CP and a gNB-CU-UP, providing an interconnection point between the gNB-CU-CP and the gNB-CU-UP.gNB: as defined in TS 38.300. This interface also applies to between the ng-eNB-CU-CP and the ng-eNB-CU-UP or between the eNB-CP and the eNB-UP.
For the purposes of the present document, the abbreviations given in TR 21.905 and the following apply. An abbreviation defined in the present document takes precedence over the definition of the same abbreviation, if any, in TR 21.905.
The gNB-CU-CP, gNB-CU-UP, ng-eNB-CU-CP, ng-eNB-CU-UP, eNB-CP and eNB-UP shall support IPv6 (RFC 8200) and/or IPv4 (RFC 791).
The IP layer of E1 only supports point-to-point transmission for delivering E1AP message.
The gNB-CU-CP, gNB-CU-UP, ng-eNB-CU-CP, ng-eNB-CU-UP, eNB-CP and eNB-UP shall support the Diffserv Code Point marking as described in RFC 2474.
SCTP (RFC 4960) shall be supported as the transport layer of E1 signalling bearer. The Payload Protocol Identifier assigned by IANA to be used by SCTP for the application layer protocol E1AP is 64 and 67 for DTLS over SCTP (RFC 6083). The byte order of the ppid shall be big-endian.
SCTP refers to the Stream Control Transmission Protocol developed by the Sigtran working group of the for the purpose of transporting various signalling protocols over IP network.
The gNB-CU-CP and gNB-CU-UP shall support a configuration with a single SCTP association per gNB-CU-CP/gNB-CU-UP pair. Configurations with multiple SCTP endpoints per gNB-CU-CP/gNB-CU-UP pair should be supported. When configurations with multiple SCTP associations are supported, the gNB-CU-CP or the gNB-CU-UP may request to dynamically add/remove SCTP associations between the gNB-CU-CP/gNB-CU-UP pair. Within the set of SCTP associations established between one gNB-CU-CP and gNB-CU-UP pair, a single SCTP association shall be employed for E1AP elementary procedures that utilize non-UE-associated signalling with the possibility of fail-over to a new association to enable robustness.
When the configuration with multiple SCTP endpoints per gNB-CU-UP is supported and gNB-CU-UP wants to add additional SCTP endpoints, the gNB-CU-UP Configuration Update procedure shall be the first E1AP procedure triggered on an additional TNLA of an already setup E1 interface instance after the TNL association has become operational, and the gNB-CU-CP shall associate the TNLA to the E1 interface instance using the included gNB-CU-UP ID.
Either the gNB-CU-CP or gNB-CU-UP shall establish the first SCTP association. The additional SCTP associations are established by the gNB-CU-UP. The SCTP Destination Port number value to be used for E1AP is 38462 which is assigned by IANA. When the gNB-CU-CP requests to dynamically add additional SCTP associations between the gNB-CU-CP and gNB-CU-UP pair, the gNB-CU-CP port is selected and signalled by the gNB-CU-CP to the gNB-CU-UP, and it can be port number value 38462 or any dynamic port value as defined by RFC 6335.
Between one gNB-CU-CP and gNB-CU-UP pair:
A single pair of stream identifiers shall be reserved over an SCTP association for the sole use of E1AP elementary procedures that utilize non UE-associated signalling.
At least one pair of stream identifiers over one or several SCTP associations shall be reserved for the sole use of E1AP elementary procedures that utilize UE-associated signalling. However, a few pairs (i.e. more than one) should be reserved.
For a single UE-associated signalling the gNB-CU-CP and the gNB-CU-UP shall use one SCTP association and one SCTP stream, and the SCTP association/stream should not be changed during the communication of the UE-associated signalling until after current SCTP association is failed, or TNL binding update is performed.
Transport network redundancy may be achieved by SCTP multi-homing between two end-points, of which one or both is assigned with multiple IP addresses. SCTP end-points shall support a multi-homed remote SCTP end-point. For SCTP endpoint redundancy an INIT may be sent from a gNB-CU-CP or a gNB-CU-UP, at any time for an already established SCTP association, which shall be handled as defined in Section 5.2 of RFC 4960.
The SCTP congestion control may, using an implementation specific mechanism, initiate higher layer protocols to reduce the signalling traffic at the source and prioritise certain messages.