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RFC 8376

Low-Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) Overview

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Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF)                   S. Farrell, Ed.
Request for Comments: 8376                        Trinity College Dublin
Category: Informational                                         May 2018
ISSN: 2070-1721

              Low-Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN) Overview


Low-Power Wide Area Networks (LPWANs) are wireless technologies with characteristics such as large coverage areas, low bandwidth, possibly very small packet and application-layer data sizes, and long battery life operation. This memo is an informational overview of the set of LPWAN technologies being considered in the IETF and of the gaps that exist between the needs of those technologies and the goal of running IP in LPWANs. Status of This Memo This document is not an Internet Standards Track specification; it is published for informational purposes. This document is a product of the Internet Engineering Task Force (IETF). It represents the consensus of the IETF community. It has received public review and has been approved for publication by the Internet Engineering Steering Group (IESG). Not all documents approved by the IESG are candidates for any level of Internet Standard; see Section 2 of RFC 7841. Information about the current status of this document, any errata, and how to provide feedback on it may be obtained at Copyright Notice Copyright (c) 2018 IETF Trust and the persons identified as the document authors. All rights reserved. This document is subject to BCP 78 and the IETF Trust's Legal Provisions Relating to IETF Documents ( in effect on the date of publication of this document. Please review these documents carefully, as they describe your rights and restrictions with respect to this document. Code Components extracted from this document must include Simplified BSD License text as described in Section 4.e of the Trust Legal Provisions and are provided without warranty as described in the Simplified BSD License.
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Table of Contents

1. Introduction . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2 2. LPWAN Technologies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 2.1. LoRaWAN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 2.1.1. Provenance and Documents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 2.1.2. Characteristics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 2.2. Narrowband IoT (NB-IoT) . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 2.2.1. Provenance and Documents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10 2.2.2. Characteristics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11 2.3. Sigfox . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 2.3.1. Provenance and Documents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15 2.3.2. Characteristics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 16 2.4. Wi-SUN Alliance Field Area Network (FAN) . . . . . . . . 20 2.4.1. Provenance and Documents . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 20 2.4.2. Characteristics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 3. Generic Terminology . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 4. Gap Analysis . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 4.1. Naive Application of IPv6 . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 4.2. 6LoWPAN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 4.2.1. Header Compression . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 4.2.2. Address Autoconfiguration . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 4.2.3. Fragmentation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 4.2.4. Neighbor Discovery . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 4.3. 6lo . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 4.4. 6tisch . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 4.5. RoHC . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 4.6. ROLL . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 4.7. CoAP . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 4.8. Mobility . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 4.9. DNS and LPWAN . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 5. Security Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31 6. IANA Considerations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 7. Informative References . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 32 Acknowledgments . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39 Contributors . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40 Author's Address . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43

1. Introduction

This document provides background material and an overview of the technologies being considered in the IETF's IPv6 over Low Power Wide- Area Networks (LPWAN) Working Group (WG). It also provides a gap analysis between the needs of these technologies and currently available IETF specifications.
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   Most technologies in this space aim for a similar goal of supporting
   large numbers of very low-cost, low-throughput devices with very low
   power consumption, so that even battery-powered devices can be
   deployed for years.  LPWAN devices also tend to be constrained in
   their use of bandwidth, for example, with limited frequencies being
   allowed to be used within limited duty cycles (usually expressed as a
   percentage of time per hour that the device is allowed to transmit).
   As the name implies, coverage of large areas is also a common goal.
   So, by and large, the different technologies aim for deployment in
   very similar circumstances.

   While all constrained networks must balance power consumption /
   battery life, cost, and bandwidth, LPWANs prioritize power and cost
   benefits by accepting severe bandwidth and duty cycle constraints
   when making the required trade-offs.  This prioritization is made in
   order to get the multiple-kilometer radio links implied by "Wide
   Area" in LPWAN's name.

   Existing pilot deployments have shown huge potential and created much
   industrial interest in these technologies.  At the time of writing,
   essentially no LPWAN end devices (other than for Wi-SUN) have IP
   capabilities.  Connecting LPWANs to the Internet would provide
   significant benefits to these networks in terms of interoperability,
   application deployment, and management (among others).  The goal of
   the LPWAN WG is to, where necessary, adapt IETF-defined protocols,
   addressing schemes, and naming conventions to this particular
   constrained environment.

   This document is largely the work of the people listed in the
   Contributors section.

2. LPWAN Technologies

This section provides an overview of the set of LPWAN technologies that are being considered in the LPWAN WG. The text for each was mainly contributed by proponents of each technology. Note that this text is not intended to be normative in any sense; it simply exists to help the reader in finding the relevant Layer 2 (L2) specifications and in understanding how those integrate with IETF- defined technologies. Similarly, there is no attempt here to set out the pros and cons of the relevant technologies.
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2.1. LoRaWAN

2.1.1. Provenance and Documents

LoRaWAN is a wireless technology based on Industrial, Scientific, and Medical (ISM) that is used for long-range low-power low-data-rate applications developed by the LoRa Alliance, a membership consortium <>. This document is based on Version 1.0.2 of the LoRa specification [LoRaSpec]. That specification is publicly available and has already seen several deployments across the globe.

2.1.2. Characteristics

LoRaWAN aims to support end devices operating on a single battery for an extended period of time (e.g., 10 years or more), extended coverage through 155 dB maximum coupling loss, and reliable and efficient file download (as needed for remote software/firmware upgrade). LoRaWAN networks are typically organized in a star-of-stars topology in which Gateways relay messages between end devices and a central "network server" in the backend. Gateways are connected to the network server via IP links while end devices use single-hop LoRaWAN communication that can be received at one or more Gateways. Communication is generally bidirectional; uplink communication from end devices to the network server is favored in terms of overall bandwidth availability. Figure 1 shows the entities involved in a LoRaWAN network. +----------+ |End Device| * * * +----------+ * +---------+ * | Gateway +---+ +----------+ * +---------+ | +---------+ |End Device| * * * +---+ Network +--- Application +----------+ * | | Server | * +---------+ | +---------+ +----------+ * | Gateway +---+ |End Device| * * * * +---------+ +----------+ Key: * LoRaWAN Radio +---+ IP connectivity Figure 1: LoRaWAN Architecture
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   o  End Device: a LoRa client device, sometimes called a "mote".
      Communicates with Gateways.

   o  Gateway: a radio on the infrastructure side, sometimes called a
      "concentrator" or "base station".  Communicates with end devices
      and, via IP, with a network server.

   o  Network Server: The Network Server (NS) terminates the LoRaWAN
      Medium Access Control (MAC) layer for the end devices connected to
      the network.  It is the center of the star topology.

   o  Join Server: The Join Server (JS) is a server on the Internet side
      of an NS that processes join requests from an end devices.

   o  Uplink message: refers to communications from an end device to a
      network server or application via one or more Gateways.

   o  Downlink message: refers to communications from a network server
      or application via one Gateway to a single end device or a group
      of end devices (considering multicasting).

   o  Application: refers to application-layer code both on the end
      device and running "behind" the NS.  For LoRaWAN, there will
      generally only be one application running on most end devices.
      Interfaces between the NS and the application are not further
      described here.

   In LoRaWAN networks, end device transmissions may be received at
   multiple Gateways, so, during nominal operation, a network server may
   see multiple instances of the same uplink message from an end device.

   The LoRaWAN network infrastructure manages the data rate and Radio
   Frequency (RF) output power for each end device individually by means
   of an Adaptive Data Rate (ADR) scheme.  End devices may transmit on
   any channel allowed by local regulation at any time.

   LoRaWAN radios make use of ISM bands, for example, 433 MHz and 868
   MHz within the European Union and 915 MHz in the Americas.

   The end device changes channels in a pseudorandom fashion for every
   transmission to help make the system more robust to interference and/
   or to conform to local regulations.
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   Figure 2 shows that after a transmission slot, a Class A device turns
   on its receiver for two short receive windows that are offset from
   the end of the transmission window.  End devices can only transmit a
   subsequent uplink frame after the end of the associated receive
   windows.  When a device joins a LoRaWAN network, there are similar
   timeouts on parts of that process.

   |----------------------------|         |--------|     |--------|
   |             Tx             |         |   Rx   |     |   Rx   |
   |----------------------------|         |--------|     |--------|
                                 Rx delay 1
                                 Rx delay 2

        Figure 2: LoRaWAN Class A Transmission and Reception Window

   Given the different regional requirements, the detailed specification
   for the LoRaWAN Physical layer (PHY) (taking up more than 30 pages of
   the specification) is not reproduced here.  Instead, and mainly to
   illustrate the kinds of issue encountered, Table 1 presents some of
   the default settings for one ISM band (without fully explaining those
   here); Table 2 describes maxima and minima for some parameters of
   interest to those defining ways to use IETF protocols over the
   LoRaWAN MAC layer.

   |       Parameters      |               Default Value               |
   |       Rx delay 1      |                    1 s                    |
   |                       |                                           |
   |       Rx delay 2      |     2 s (must be RECEIVE_DELAY1 + 1 s)    |
   |                       |                                           |
   |      join delay 1     |                    5 s                    |
   |                       |                                           |
   |      join delay 2     |                    6 s                    |
   |                       |                                           |
   |     868MHz Default    |  3 (868.1,868.2,868.3), data rate: 0.3-50 |
   |        channels       |                   kbit/s                  |

               Table 1: Default Settings for EU 868 MHz Band
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   | Parameter/Notes                                |  Min   |   Max   |
   | Duty Cycle: some but not all ISM bands impose  |   1%   |    no   |
   | a limit in terms of how often an end device    |        |  limit  |
   | can transmit.  In some cases, LoRaWAN is more  |        |         |
   | restrictive in an attempt to avoid congestion. |        |         |
   |                                                |        |         |
   | EU 868 MHz band data rate/frame size           |  250   |  50000  |
   |                                                | bits/s |  bits/s |
   |                                                |  : 59  |  : 250  |
   |                                                | octets |  octets |
   |                                                |        |         |
   | US 915 MHz band data rate/frame size           |  980   |  21900  |
   |                                                | bits/s |  bits/s |
   |                                                |  : 19  |  : 250  |
   |                                                | octets |  octets |

         Table 2: Minima and Maxima for Various LoRaWAN Parameters

   Note that, in the case of the smallest frame size (19 octets), 8
   octets are required for LoRa MAC layer headers, leaving only 11
   octets for payload (including MAC layer options).  However, those
   settings do not apply for the join procedure -- end devices are
   required to use a channel and data rate that can send the 23-byte
   Join-Request message for the join procedure.

   Uplink and downlink higher-layer data is carried in a MACPayload.
   There is a concept of "ports" (an optional 8-bit value) to handle
   different applications on an end device.  Port zero is reserved for
   LoRaWAN-specific messaging, such as the configuration of the end
   device's network parameters (available channels, data rates, ADR
   parameters, Rx Delay 1 and 2, etc.).

   In addition to carrying higher-layer PDUs, there are Join-Request and
   Join-Response (aka Join-Accept) messages for handling network access.
   And so-called "MAC commands" (see below) up to 15 bytes long can be
   piggybacked in an options field ("FOpts").

   There are a number of MAC commands for link and device status
   checking, ADR and duty cycle negotiation, and managing the RX windows
   and radio channel settings.  For example, the link check response
   message allows the NS (in response to a request from an end device)
   to inform an end device about the signal attenuation seen most
   recently at a Gateway and to tell the end device how many Gateways
   received the corresponding link request MAC command.
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   Some MAC commands are initiated by the network server.  For example,
   one command allows the network server to ask an end device to reduce
   its duty cycle to only use a proportion of the maximum allowed in a
   region.  Another allows the network server to query the end device's
   power status with the response from the end device specifying whether
   it has an external power source or is battery powered (in which case,
   a relative battery level is also sent to the network server).

   In order to operate nominally on a LoRaWAN network, a device needs a
   32-bit device address, which is assigned when the device "joins" the
   network (see below for the join procedure) or that is pre-provisioned
   into the device.  In case of roaming devices, the device address is
   assigned based on the 24-bit network identifier (NetID) that is
   allocated to the network by the LoRa Alliance.  Non-roaming devices
   can be assigned device addresses by the network without relying on a
   NetID assigned by the LoRa Alliance.

   End devices are assumed to work with one or quite a limited number of
   applications, identified by a 64-bit AppEUI, which is assumed to be a
   registered IEEE EUI64 value [EUI64].  In addition, a device needs to
   have two symmetric session keys, one for protecting network artifacts
   (port=0), the NwkSKey, and another for protecting application-layer
   traffic, the AppSKey.  Both keys are used for 128-bit AES
   cryptographic operations.  So, one option is for an end device to
   have all of the above plus channel information, somehow
   (pre-)provisioned; in that case, the end device can simply start
   transmitting.  This is achievable in many cases via out-of-band means
   given the nature of LoRaWAN networks.  Table 3 summarizes these

   | Value   | Description                                             |
   | DevAddr | DevAddr (32 bits) =  device-specific network address    |
   |         | generated from the NetID                                |
   |         |                                                         |
   | AppEUI  | IEEE EUI64 value corresponding to the join server for   |
   |         | an application                                          |
   |         |                                                         |
   | NwkSKey | 128-bit network session key used with AES-CMAC          |
   |         |                                                         |
   | AppSKey | 128-bit application session key used with AES-CTR       |
   |         |                                                         |
   | AppKey  | 128-bit application session key used with AES-ECB       |

              Table 3: Values Required for Nominal Operation
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   As an alternative, end devices can use the LoRaWAN join procedure
   with a join server behind the NS in order to set up some of these
   values and dynamically gain access to the network.  To use the join
   procedure, an end device must still know the AppEUI and a different
   (long-term) symmetric key that is bound to the AppEUI (this is the
   application key (AppKey), and it is distinct from the application
   session key (AppSKey)).  The AppKey is required to be specific to the
   device; that is, each end device should have a different AppKey
   value.  Finally, the end device also needs a long-term identifier for
   itself, which is syntactically also an EUI-64 and is known as the
   device EUI or DevEUI.  Table 4 summarizes these values.

     | Value   | Description                                        |
     | DevEUI  | IEEE EUI64 naming the device                       |
     |         |                                                    |
     | AppEUI  | IEEE EUI64 naming the application                  |
     |         |                                                    |
     | AppKey  | 128-bit long-term application key for use with AES |

                Table 4: Values Required for Join Procedure

   The join procedure involves a special exchange where the end device
   asserts the AppEUI and DevEUI (integrity protected with the long-term
   AppKey, but not encrypted) in a Join-Request uplink message.  This is
   then routed to the network server, which interacts with an entity
   that knows that AppKey to verify the Join-Request.  If all is going
   well, a Join-Accept downlink message is returned from the network
   server to the end device.  That message specifies the 24-bit NetID,
   32-bit DevAddr, and channel information and from which the AppSKey
   and NwkSKey can be derived based on knowledge of the AppKey.  This
   provides the end device with all the values listed in Table 3.

   All payloads are encrypted and have data integrity.  MAC commands,
   when sent as a payload (port zero), are therefore protected.
   However, MAC commands piggybacked as frame options ("FOpts") are sent
   in clear.  Any MAC commands sent as frame options and not only as
   payload, are visible to a passive attacker, but they are not
   malleable for an active attacker due to the use of the Message
   Integrity Check (MIC) described below.

   For LoRaWAN version 1.0.x, the NwkSKey session key is used to provide
   data integrity between the end device and the network server.  The
   AppSKey is used to provide data confidentiality between the end
   device and network server, or to the application "behind" the network
   server, depending on the implementation of the network.
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   All MAC-layer messages have an outer 32-bit MIC calculated using AES-
   CMAC with the input being the ciphertext payload and other headers
   and using the NwkSkey.  Payloads are encrypted using AES-128, with a
   counter-mode derived from [IEEE.802.15.4] using the AppSKey.
   Gateways are not expected to be provided with the AppSKey or NwkSKey,
   all of the infrastructure-side cryptography happens in (or "behind")
   the network server.  When session keys are derived from the AppKey as
   a result of the join procedure, the Join-Accept message payload is
   specially handled.

   The long-term AppKey is directly used to protect the Join-Accept
   message content, but the function used is not an AES-encrypt
   operation, but rather an AES-decrypt operation.  The justification is
   that this means that the end device only needs to implement the AES-
   encrypt operation.  (The counter-mode variant used for payload
   decryption means the end device doesn't need an AES-decrypt

   The Join-Accept plaintext is always less than 16 bytes long, so
   Electronic Code Book (ECB) mode is used for protecting Join-Accept
   messages.  The Join-Accept message contains an AppNonce (a 24-bit
   value) that is recovered on the end device along with the other Join-
   Accept content (e.g., DevAddr) using the AES-encrypt operation.  Once
   the Join-Accept payload is available to the end device, the session
   keys are derived from the AppKey, AppNonce, and other values, again
   using an ECB mode AES-encrypt operation, with the plaintext input
   being a maximum of 16 octets.

2.2. Narrowband IoT (NB-IoT)

2.2.1. Provenance and Documents

Narrowband Internet of Things (NB-IoT) has been developed and standardized by 3GPP. The standardization of NB-IoT was finalized with 3GPP Release 13 in June 2016, and further enhancements for NB-IoT are specified in 3GPP Release 14 in 2017 (for example, in the form of multicast support). Further features and improvements will be developed in the following releases, but NB-IoT has been ready to be deployed since 2016; it is rather simple to deploy, especially in the existing LTE networks with a software upgrade in the operator's base stations. For more information of what has been specified for NB-IoT, 3GPP specification 36.300 [TGPP36300] provides an overview and overall description of the Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access Network (E-UTRAN) radio interface protocol architecture, while specifications 36.321 [TGPP36321], 36.322 [TGPP36322], 36.323 [TGPP36323], and 36.331 [TGPP36331] give more detailed descriptions
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   of MAC, Radio Link Control (RLC), Packet Data Convergence Protocol
   (PDCP), and Radio Resource Control (RRC) protocol layers,
   respectively.  Note that the description below assumes familiarity
   with numerous 3GPP terms.

   For a general overview of NB-IoT, see [nbiot-ov].

2.2.2. Characteristics

Specific targets for NB-IoT include: module cost that is Less than US $5, extended coverage of 164 dB maximum coupling loss, battery life of over 10 years, ~55000 devices per cell, and uplink reporting latency of less than 10 seconds. NB-IoT supports Half Duplex Frequency Division Duplex (FDD) operation mode with 60 kbit/s peak rate in uplink and 30 kbit/s peak rate in downlink, and a Maximum Transmission Unit (MTU) size of 1600 bytes, limited by PDCP layer (see Figure 4 for the protocol structure), which is the highest layer in the user plane, as explained later. Any packet size up to the said MTU size can be passed to the NB-IoT stack from higher layers, segmentation of the packet is performed in the RLC layer, which can segment the data to transmission blocks with a size as small as 16 bits. As the name suggests, NB-IoT uses narrowbands with bandwidth of 180 kHz in both downlink and uplink. The multiple access scheme used in the downlink is Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiplex (OFDMA) with 15 kHz sub-carrier spacing. In uplink, Sub-Carrier Frequency-Division Multiplex (SC-FDMA) single tone with either 15kHz or 3.75 kHz tone spacing is used, or optionally multi-tone SC-FDMA can be used with 15 kHz tone spacing. NB-IoT can be deployed in three ways. In-band deployment means that the narrowband is deployed inside the LTE band and radio resources are flexibly shared between NB-IoT and normal LTE carrier. In Guard- band deployment, the narrowband uses the unused resource blocks between two adjacent LTE carriers. Standalone deployment is also supported, where the narrowband can be located alone in dedicated spectrum, which makes it possible, for example, to reframe a GSM carrier at 850/900 MHz for NB-IoT. All three deployment modes are used in licensed frequency bands. The maximum transmission power is either 20 or 23 dBm for uplink transmissions, while for downlink transmission the eNodeB may use higher transmission power, up to 46 dBm depending on the deployment. A Maximum Coupling Loss (MCL) target for NB-IoT coverage enhancements defined by 3GPP is 164 dB. With this MCL, the performance of NB-IoT in downlink varies between 200 bps and 2-3 kbit/s, depending on the deployment mode. Stand-alone operation may achieve the highest data
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   rates, up to a few kbit/s, while in-band and guard-band operations
   may reach several hundreds of bps.  NB-IoT may even operate with an
   MCL higher than 170 dB with very low bit rates.

   For signaling optimization, two options are introduced in addition to
   the legacy LTE RRC connection setup; mandatory Data-over-NAS (Control
   Plane optimization, solution 2 in [TGPP23720]) and optional RRC
   Suspend/Resume (User Plane optimization, solution 18 in [TGPP23720]).
   In the control-plane optimization, the data is sent over Non-Access
   Stratum (NAS), directly to/from the Mobile Management Entity (MME)
   (see Figure 3 for the network architecture) in the core network to
   the User Equipment (UE) without interaction from the base station.
   This means there is no Access Stratum security or header compression
   provided by the PDCP layer in the eNodeB, as the Access Stratum is
   bypassed, and only limited RRC procedures.  Header compression based
   on Robust Header Compression (RoHC) may still optionally be provided
   and terminated in the MME.

   The RRC Suspend/Resume procedures reduce the signaling overhead
   required for UE state transition from RRC Idle to RRC Connected mode
   compared to a legacy LTE operation in order to have quicker user-
   plane transaction with the network and return to RRC Idle mode

   In order to prolong device battery life, both Power-Saving Mode (PSM)
   and extended DRX (eDRX) are available to NB-IoT.  With eDRX, the RRC
   Connected mode DRX cycle is up to 10.24 seconds; in RRC Idle, the
   eDRX cycle can be up to 3 hours.  In PSM, the device is in a deep
   sleep state and only wakes up for uplink reporting.  After the
   reporting, there is a window (configured by the network) during which
   the device receiver is open for downlink connectivity or for
   periodical "keep-alive" signaling (PSM uses periodic TAU signaling
   with additional reception windows for downlink reachability).

   Since NB-IoT operates in a licensed spectrum, it has no channel
   access restrictions allowing up to a 100% duty cycle.

   3GPP access security is specified in [TGPP33203].
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   |UE| \                 +------+      +------+
   +--+  \                | MME  |------| HSS  |
          \             / +------+      +------+
   +--+    \+--------+ /      |
   |UE| ----| eNodeB |-       |
   +--+    /+--------+ \      |
          /             \ +--------+
         /               \|        |    +------+     Service Packet
   +--+ /                 |  S-GW  |----| P-GW |---- Data Network (PDN)
   |UE|                   |        |    +------+     e.g., Internet
   +--+                   +--------+

                    Figure 3: 3GPP Network Architecture

   Figure 3 shows the 3GPP network architecture, which applies to
   NB-IoT.  The MME is responsible for handling the mobility of the UE.
   The MME tasks include tracking and paging UEs, session management,
   choosing the Serving Gateway for the UE during initial attachment and
   authenticating the user.  At the MME, the NAS signaling from the UE
   is terminated.

   The Serving Gateway (S-GW) routes and forwards the user data packets
   through the access network and acts as a mobility anchor for UEs
   during handover between base stations known as eNodeBs and also
   during handovers between NB-IoT and other 3GPP technologies.

   The Packet Data Network Gateway (P-GW) works as an interface between
   the 3GPP network and external networks.

   The Home Subscriber Server (HSS) contains user-related and
   subscription-related information.  It is a database that performs
   mobility management, session-establishment support, user
   authentication, and access authorization.

   E-UTRAN consists of components of a single type, eNodeB. eNodeB is a
   base station that controls the UEs in one or several cells.

   The 3GPP radio protocol architecture is illustrated in Figure 4.
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   +---------+                                       +---------+
   | NAS     |----|-----------------------------|----| NAS     |
   +---------+    |    +---------+---------+    |    +---------+
   | RRC     |----|----| RRC     | S1-AP   |----|----| S1-AP   |
   +---------+    |    +---------+---------+    |    +---------+
   | PDCP    |----|----| PDCP    | SCTP    |----|----| SCTP    |
   +---------+    |    +---------+---------+    |    +---------+
   | RLC     |----|----| RLC     | IP      |----|----| IP      |
   +---------+    |    +---------+---------+    |    +---------+
   | MAC     |----|----| MAC     | L2      |----|----| L2      |
   +---------+    |    +---------+---------+    |    +---------+
   | PHY     |----|----| PHY     | PHY     |----|----| PHY     |
   +---------+         +---------+---------+         +---------+
               LTE-Uu                         S1-MME
       UE                     eNodeB                     MME

     Figure 4: 3GPP Radio Protocol Architecture for the Control Plane

   The radio protocol architecture of NB-IoT (and LTE) is separated into
   the control plane and the user plane.  The control plane consists of
   protocols that control the radio-access bearers and the connection
   between the UE and the network.  The highest layer of control plane
   is called the Non-Access Stratum (NAS), which conveys the radio
   signaling between the UE and the Evolved Packet Core (EPC), passing
   transparently through the radio network.  The NAS is responsible for
   authentication, security control, mobility management, and bearer

   The Access Stratum (AS) is the functional layer below the NAS; in the
   control plane, it consists of the Radio Resource Control (RRC)
   protocol [TGPP36331], which handles connection establishment and
   release functions, broadcast of system information, radio-bearer
   establishment, reconfiguration, and release.  The RRC configures the
   user and control planes according to the network status.  There exist
   two RRC states, RRC_Idle or RRC_Connected, and the RRC entity
   controls the switching between these states.  In RRC_Idle, the
   network knows that the UE is present in the network, and the UE can
   be reached in case of an incoming call/downlink data.  In this state,
   the UE monitors paging, performs cell measurements and cell
   selection, and acquires system information.  Also, the UE can receive
   broadcast and multicast data, but it is not expected to transmit or
   receive unicast data.  In RRC_Connected state, the UE has a
   connection to the eNodeB, the network knows the UE location on the
   cell level, and the UE may receive and transmit unicast data.  An RRC
   connection is established when the UE is expected to be active in the
   network, to transmit or receive data.  The RRC connection is
   released, switching back to RRC_Idle, when there is no more traffic;
   this is in order to preserve UE battery life and radio resources.
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 15
   However, as mentioned earlier, a new feature was introduced for
   NB-IoT that allows data to be transmitted from the MME directly to
   the UE and then transparently to the eNodeB, thus bypassing AS

   The PDCP's [TGPP36323] main services in the control plane are
   transfer of control-plane data, ciphering, and integrity protection.

   The RLC protocol [TGPP36322] performs transfer of upper-layer PDUs
   and, optionally, error correction with Automatic Repeat reQuest
   (ARQ), concatenation, segmentation, and reassembly of RLC Service
   Data Units (SDUs), in-sequence delivery of upper-layer PDUs,
   duplicate detection, RLC SDU discarding, RLC-re-establishment, and
   protocol error detection and recovery.

   The MAC protocol [TGPP36321] provides mapping between logical
   channels and transport channels, multiplexing of MAC SDUs, scheduling
   information reporting, error correction with Hybrid ARQ (HARQ),
   priority handling, and transport format selection.

   The PHY [TGPP36201] provides data-transport services to higher
   layers.  These include error detection and indication to higher
   layers, Forward Error Correction (FEC) encoding, HARQ soft-combining,
   rate-matching, mapping of the transport channels onto physical
   channels, power-weighting and modulation of physical channels,
   frequency and time synchronization, and radio characteristics

   The user plane is responsible for transferring the user data through
   the Access Stratum.  It interfaces with IP and the highest layer of
   the user plane is the PDCP, which, in the user plane, performs header
   compression using RoHC, transfer of user-plane data between eNodeB
   and the UE, ciphering, and integrity protection.  Similar to the
   control plane, lower layers in the user plane include RLC, MAC, and
   the PHY performing the same tasks as they do in the control plane.

2.3. Sigfox

2.3.1. Provenance and Documents

The Sigfox LPWAN is in line with the terminology and specifications being defined by ETSI [etsi_unb]. As of today, Sigfox's network has been fully deployed in 12 countries, with ongoing deployments in 26 other countries, giving in total a geography of 2 million square kilometers, containing 512 million people.
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 16

2.3.2. Characteristics

Sigfox LPWAN autonomous battery-operated devices send only a few bytes per day, week, or month, in principle, allowing them to remain on a single battery for up to 10-15 years. Hence, the system is designed as to allow devices to last several years, sometimes even buried underground. Since the radio protocol is connectionless and optimized for uplink communications, the capacity of a Sigfox base station depends on the number of messages generated by devices, and not on the actual number of devices. Likewise, the battery life of devices depends on the number of messages generated by the device. Depending on the use case, devices can vary from sending less than one message per device per day to dozens of messages per device per day. The coverage of the cell depends on the link budget and on the type of deployment (urban, rural, etc.). The radio interface is compliant with the following regulations: Spectrum allocation in the USA [fcc_ref] Spectrum allocation in Europe [etsi_ref1] [etsi_ref2] Spectrum allocation in Japan [arib_ref] The Sigfox radio interface is also compliant with the local regulations of the following countries: Australia, Brazil, Canada, Kenya, Lebanon, Mauritius, Mexico, New Zealand, Oman, Peru, Singapore, South Africa, South Korea, and Thailand. The radio interface is based on Ultra Narrow Band (UNB) communications, which allow an increased transmission range by spending a limited amount of energy at the device. Moreover, UNB allows a large number of devices to coexist in a given cell without significantly increasing the spectrum interference. Both uplink and downlink are supported, although the system is optimized for uplink communications. Due to spectrum optimizations, different uplink and downlink frames and time synchronization methods are needed. The main radio characteristics of the UNB uplink transmission are: o Channelization mask: 100 Hz / 600 Hz (depending on the region) o Uplink baud rate: 100 baud / 600 baud (depending on the region)
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 17
   o  Modulation scheme: DBPSK

   o  Uplink transmission power: compliant with local regulation

   o  Link budget: 155 dB (or better)

   o  Central frequency accuracy: not relevant, provided there is no
      significant frequency drift within an uplink packet transmission

   For example, in Europe, the UNB uplink frequency band is limited to
   868.00 to 868.60 MHz, with a maximum output power of 25 mW and a duty
   cycle of 1%.

   The format of the uplink frame is the following:

   |Preamble|  Frame | Dev ID |     Payload      |Msg Auth Code| FCS |
   |        |  Sync  |        |                  |             |     |

                       Figure 5: Uplink Frame Format

   The uplink frame is composed of the following fields:

   o  Preamble: 19 bits

   o  Frame sync and header: 29 bits

   o  Device ID: 32 bits

   o  Payload: 0-96 bits

   o  Authentication: 16-40 bits

   o  Frame check sequence: 16 bits (Cyclic Redundancy Check (CRC))

   The main radio characteristics of the UNB downlink transmission are:

   o  Channelization mask: 1.5 kHz

   o  Downlink baud rate: 600 baud

   o  Modulation scheme: GFSK

   o  Downlink transmission power: 500 mW / 4W (depending on the region)

   o  Link budget: 153 dB (or better)
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 18
   o  Central frequency accuracy: the center frequency of downlink
      transmission is set by the network according to the corresponding
      uplink transmission.

   For example, in Europe, the UNB downlink frequency band is limited to
   869.40 to 869.65 MHz, with a maximum output power of 500 mW with 10%
   duty cycle.

   The format of the downlink frame is the following:

   |  Preamble  |Frame|   ECC   |     Payload      |Msg Auth Code| FCS |
   |            |Sync |         |                  |             |     |

                      Figure 6: Downlink Frame Format

   The downlink frame is composed of the following fields:

   o  Preamble: 91 bits

   o  Frame sync and header: 13 bits

   o  Error Correcting Code (ECC): 32 bits

   o  Payload: 0-64 bits

   o  Authentication: 16 bits

   o  Frame check sequence: 8 bits (CRC)

   The radio interface is optimized for uplink transmissions, which are
   asynchronous.  Downlink communications are achieved by devices
   querying the network for available data.

   A device willing to receive downlink messages opens a fixed window
   for reception after sending an uplink transmission.  The delay and
   duration of this window have fixed values.  The network transmits the
   downlink message for a given device during the reception window, and
   the network also selects the BS for transmitting the corresponding
   downlink message.

   Uplink and downlink transmissions are unbalanced due to the
   regulatory constraints on ISM bands.  Under the strictest
   regulations, the system can allow a maximum of 140 uplink messages
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 19
   and 4 downlink messages per device per day.  These restrictions can
   be slightly relaxed depending on system conditions and the specific
   regulatory domain of operation.

                |DEV| *                    +------+
                +---+   *                  |  RA  |
                          *                +------+
                +---+       *                 |
                |DEV| * * *   *               |
                +---+       *   +----+        |
                              * | BS | \  +--------+
                +---+       *   +----+  \ |        |
        DA -----|DEV| * * *               |   SC   |----- NA
                +---+       *           / |        |
                              * +----+ /  +--------+
                +---+       *   | BS |/
                |DEV| * * *   * +----+
                +---+         *
                +---+     *
                |DEV| * *

                   Figure 7: Sigfox Network Architecture

   Figure 7 depicts the different elements of the Sigfox network

   Sigfox has a "one-contract one-network" model allowing devices to
   connect in any country, without any need or notion of either roaming
   or handover.

   The architecture consists of a single cloud-based core network, which
   allows global connectivity with minimal impact on the end device and
   radio access network.  The core network elements are the Service
   Center (SC) and the Registration Authority (RA).  The SC is in charge
   of the data connectivity between the BS and the Internet, as well as
   the control and management of the BSs and End Points (EPs).  The RA
   is in charge of the EP network access authorization.

   The radio access network is comprised of several BSs connected
   directly to the SC.  Each BS performs complex L1/L2 functions,
   leaving some L2 and L3 functionalities to the SC.

   The Devices (DEVs) or EPs are the objects that communicate
   application data between local Device Applications (DAs) and Network
   Applications (NAs).
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 20
   Devices (or EPs) can be static or nomadic, as they associate with the
   SC and they do not attach to any specific BS.  Hence, they can
   communicate with the SC through one or multiple BSs.

   Due to constraints in the complexity of the Device, it is assumed
   that Devices host only one or very few device applications, which
   most of the time communicate each to a single network application at
   a time.

   The radio protocol authenticates and ensures the integrity of each
   message.  This is achieved by using a unique device ID and an
   AES-128-based message authentication code, ensuring that the message
   has been generated and sent by the device with the ID claimed in the
   message.  Application data can be encrypted at the application level
   or not, depending on the criticality of the use case, to provide a
   balance between cost and effort versus risk.  AES-128 in counter mode
   is used for encryption.  Cryptographic keys are independent for each
   device.  These keys are associated with the device ID and separate
   integrity and confidentiality keys are pre-provisioned.  A
   confidentiality key is only provisioned if confidentiality is to be
   used.  At the time of writing, the algorithms and keying details for
   this are not published.

2.4. Wi-SUN Alliance Field Area Network (FAN)

Text here is via personal communication from Bob Heile ( and was authored by Bob and Sum Chin Sean. Paul Duffy ( also provided additional comments/input on this section.

2.4.1. Provenance and Documents

The Wi-SUN Alliance <> is an industry alliance for smart city, smart grid, smart utility, and a broad set of general IoT applications. The Wi-SUN Alliance Field Area Network (FAN) profile is open-standards based (primarily on IETF and IEEE 802 standards) and was developed to address applications like smart municipality/city infrastructure monitoring and management, Electric Vehicle (EV) infrastructure, Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI), Distribution Automation (DA), Supervisory Control and Data Acquisition (SCADA) protection/management, distributed generation monitoring and management, and many more IoT applications. Additionally, the Alliance has created a certification program to promote global multi-vendor interoperability. The FAN profile is specified within ANSI/TIA as an extension of work previously done on Smart Utility Networks [ANSI-4957-000]. Updates to those specifications intended to be published in 2017 will contain
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 21
   details of the FAN profile.  A current snapshot of the work to
   produce that profile is presented in [wisun-pressie1] and

2.4.2. Characteristics

The FAN profile is an IPv6 wireless mesh network with support for enterprise-level security. The frequency-hopping wireless mesh topology aims to offer superior network robustness, reliability due to high redundancy, good scalability due to the flexible mesh configuration, and good resilience to interference. Very low power modes are in development permitting long-term battery operation of network nodes. The following list contains some overall characteristics of Wi-SUN that are relevant to LPWAN applications. o Coverage: The range of Wi-SUN FAN is typically 2 - 3 km in line of sight, matching the needs of neighborhood area networks, campus area networks, or corporate area networks. The range can also be extended via multi-hop networking. o High-bandwidth, low-link latency: Wi-SUN supports relatively high bandwidth, i.e., up to 300 kbit/s [FANOV], enables remote update and upgrade of devices so that they can handle new applications, extending their working life. Wi-SUN supports LPWAN IoT applications that require on-demand control by providing low link latency (0.02 s) and bidirectional communication. o Low-power consumption: FAN devices draw less than 2 uA when resting and only 8 mA when listening. Such devices can maintain a long lifetime, even if they are frequently listening. For instance, suppose the device transmits data for 10 ms once every 10 s; theoretically, a battery of 1000 mAh can last more than 10 years. o Scalability: Tens of millions of Wi-SUN FAN devices have been deployed in urban, suburban, and rural environments, including deployments with more than 1 million devices. A FAN contains one or more networks. Within a network, nodes assume one of three operational roles. First, each network contains a Border Router providing WAN connectivity to the network. The Border Router maintains source-routing tables for all nodes within its network, provides node authentication and key management services, and disseminates network-wide information such as broadcast schedules. Second, Router nodes, which provide upward and downward packet forwarding (within a network). A Router also provides
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 22
   services for relaying security and address management protocols.
   Finally, Leaf nodes provide minimum capabilities: discovering and
   joining a network, sending/receiving IPv6 packets, etc.  A low-power
   network may contain a mesh topology with Routers at the edges that
   construct a star topology with Leaf nodes.

   The FAN profile is based on various open standards developed by the
   IETF (including [RFC768], [RFC2460], [RFC4443], and [RFC6282]).
   Related IEEE 802 standards include [IEEE.802.15.4] and
   [IEEE.802.15.9].  For Low-Power and Lossy Networks (LLNs), see ANSI/
   TIA [ANSI-4957-210].

   The FAN profile specification provides an application-independent
   IPv6-based transport service.  There are two possible methods for
   establishing IPv6 packet routing: the Routing Protocol for Low-Power
   and Lossy Networks (RPL) at the Network layer is mandatory, and
   Multi-Hop Delivery Service (MHDS) is optional at the Data Link layer.
   Figure 8 provides an overview of the FAN network stack.

   The Transport service is based on UDP (defined in [RFC768]) or TCP
   (defined in [RFC793].

   The Network service is provided by IPv6 as defined in [RFC2460] with
   an IPv6 over Low-Power Wireless Personal Area Networks (6LoWPAN)
   adaptation as defined in [RFC4944] and [RFC6282].  ICMPv6, as defined
   in [RFC4443], is used for the control plane during information

   The Data Link service provides both control/management of the PHY and
   data transfer/management services to the Network layer.  These
   services are divided into MAC and Logical Link Control (LLC) sub-
   layers.  The LLC sub-layer provides a protocol dispatch service that
   supports 6LoWPAN and an optional MAC sub-layer mesh service.  The MAC
   sub-layer is constructed using data structures defined in
   [IEEE.802.15.4].  Multiple modes of frequency hopping are defined.
   The entire MAC payload is encapsulated in an [IEEE.802.15.9]
   Information Element to enable LLC protocol dispatch between upper-
   layer 6LoWPAN processing and MAC sub-layer mesh processing, etc.
   These areas will be expanded once [IEEE.802.15.12] is completed.

   The PHY service is derived from a subset of the SUN FSK specification
   in [IEEE.802.15.4].  The 2-FSK modulation schemes, with a channel-
   spacing range from 200 to 600 kHz, are defined to provide data rates
   from 50 to 300 kbit/s, with FEC as an optional feature.  Towards
   enabling ultra-low-power applications, the PHY layer design is also
   extendable to low-energy and critical infrastructure-monitoring
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 23
   | Layer                | Description                                |
   | IPv6 protocol suite  | TCP/UDP                                    |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | 6LoWPAN Adaptation + Header Compression    |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | DHCPv6 for IP address management           |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | Routing using RPL                          |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | ICMPv6                                     |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | Unicast and Multicast forwarding           |
   | MAC based on         | Frequency hopping                          |
   | [IEEE.802.15.4e] +   |                                            |
   | IE extensions        | Discovery and Join                         |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | Protocol Dispatch ([IEEE.802.15.9])        |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | Several Frame Exchange patterns            |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | Optional Mesh Under routing                |
   |                      | ([ANSI-4957-210])                          |
   | PHY based on         | Various data rates and regions             |
   | [IEEE.802.15.4g]     |                                            |
   | Security             | [IEEE.802.1x]/EAP-TLS/PKI Authentication   |
   |                      | TLS_ECDHE_ECDSA_WITH_AES_128_CCM_8         |
   |                      | required for EAP-TLS                       |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | 802.11i Group Key Management               |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | Frame security is implemented as AES-CCM*  |
   |                      | as specified in [IEEE.802.15.4]            |
   |                      |                                            |
   |                      | Optional [ETSI-TS-102-887-2] Node 2 Node   |
   |                      | Key Management                             |

                      Figure 8: Wi-SUN Stack Overview
Top   ToC   RFC8376 - Page 24
   The FAN security supports Data Link layer network access control,
   mutual authentication, and establishment of a secure pairwise link
   between a FAN node and its Border Router, which is implemented with
   an adaptation of [IEEE.802.1x] and EAP-TLS as described in [RFC5216]
   using secure device identity as described in [IEEE.802.1AR].
   Certificate formats are based upon [RFC5280].  A secure group link
   between a Border Router and a set of FAN nodes is established using
   an adaptation of the [IEEE.802.11] Four-Way Handshake.  A set of four
   group keys are maintained within the network, one of which is the
   current transmit key.  Secure node-to-node links are supported
   between one-hop FAN neighbors using an adaptation of
   [ETSI-TS-102-887-2].  FAN nodes implement Frame Security as specified
   in [IEEE.802.15.4].

(page 24 continued on part 2)

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