RF chain usage in a dual network architecture
An apparatus and method for using a radio frequency (RF chain) in a dual-network architecture are disclosed herein. An evolved node B (eNodeB) receives RF chain sharing information from user equipment (UE) associated with the eNodeB. The RF chain sharing information comprises indication of a non-usable frequency band or indication of which frequency band is supported for each of a first network and a second network that an RF chain is switchable between. The RF chain is included in the UE and at least a frequency band is shared between the first and second networks. The eNodeB transmits radio resource control (RRC) connection reconfiguration signaling to the UE to release a secondary cell (SCell) or perform inter-frequency handover of a primary cell (PCell) in response to the RF chain sharing information.
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This application claims priority to U.S. Provisional Patent Application No. 61/612,188 entitled “Wireless Communication Systems and Methods” filed on Mar. 16, 2012, the content of which is incorporated herein by reference in its entirety.TECHNICAL HELD
The present disclosure relates generally to wireless communications. More particularly, the present disclosure relates to carrier aggregation support in wireless communication systems.BACKGROUND
Dual wireless technology architecture (also referred to as dual-standby architecture) comprises user equipment (UE) using a first wireless technology for voice communications (e.g., phone calls) and a second wireless technology for data communications (e.g., web browsing). As an example, the first wireless technology can be 2nd Generation (2G) or 3rd Generation (3G) cellular technology, and the second wireless technology can be a 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) long term evolution (LTE)-Advanced technology. In 3GPP LTE Release-10 system, carrier aggregation (CA) is supported. CA is used to extend communication up to 100 megahertz (MHz) in Release 10. Such large bandwidth communication is achieved by the simultaneous aggregation of more than one Release 8/9 component carrier having bandwidths of 1.4, 3, 5, 10, 15, and up to 20 MHz, hence the term carrier aggregation, in which each carrier within the aggregated set of carriers is referred to as a component carrier. Under Release 10, up to five component carriers may be aggregated together to achieve the maximum bandwidth of 100 MHz.
If CA is supported in dual-standby architecture, it may be possible for a UE to share a radio frequency (RF) chain between the 2G/3G network and LTE network if the two networks' respective frequency bands are close to each other. If a RF chain is to be shared, the evolved node B (eNodeB or eNB) should be notified of whether it will be used for 2G/3G or LTE service. Currently the eNodeB is not provided this information.
The following description is presented to enable any person skilled in the art to create and use a computer system configuration and related method and article of manufacture to notify an eNodeB of which network a RF chain switchable between at least two disparate networks (e.g., LTE and 3G, LTE and 2G, etc.) will be supporting in connection with a service event (e.g., start of a voice call) are described herein. The switchable RF chain is included in a UE capable of dual-network operation. The dual network architecture supports CA. The UE provides notification to its associated eNodeB when the frequency band to be used for the service event (e.g., 2G/3G voice call) is the same as or close to the frequency band used for the other network service (e.g., LTE service). In some embodiments RRC signaling is used to provide the information about RF sharing to the eNodeB. In other embodiments Activation/Deactivation MAC CE signaling is triggered by RF sharing information provided by the HE to the eNodeB. In still other embodiments PCell and SCells and/or CCs for the PCell and SCells are judiciously assigned to the so as to minimize frequency co-existence issues.
Various modifications to the embodiments will be readily apparent to those skilled in the art, and the generic principles defined herein may be applied to other embodiments and applications without departing from the scope of the invention. Moreover, in the following description, numerous details are set forth for the purpose of explanation. However, one of ordinary skill in the art will realize that embodiments of the invention may be practiced without the use of these specific details. In other instances, well-known structures and processes are not shown in block diagram form in order not to obscure the description of the embodiments of the invention with unnecessary detail. Thus, the present disclosure is not intended to be limited to the embodiments shown, but is to be accorded the widest scope consistent with the principles and features disclosed herein.
The eNodeB 102 (also referred to as a base station) serves a certain geographic area that includes at least a cell 104. A plurality of user equipment (UEs) 122 associated with the cell 104 communicates with the eNodeB 102 on one or more specific frequencies, the eNodeB 102 providing control and radio air interface functionalities for cell 104. The eNodeB 106 (also referred to as a base station) is similar to eNodeB 102 except it serves a different cell from that of eNodeB 102. The eNodeB 106 serves a certain geographic area that includes at least a cell 108. A plurality of UEs 122 associated with the cell 108 communicates with the eNodeB 106 on one or more specific frequencies, the eNodeB 106 providing control and radio air interface functionalities for cell 108.
Each of the eNodeBs 102, 106 communicates with the core network 118. Core network 118 includes, but is not limited to, a mobility management entity (MME), a home location registrar (HLR)/home subscriber server (HSS), serving gateway (SGW), and other LTE network components providing network functionalities not provided by an eNodeB.
The BS 110 serves a certain geographic area that includes at least a cell 112. A plurality of UEs 122 associated with the cell 112 communicates with the BS 110 on one or more specific frequencies, the BS 110 providing control and radio air interface functionalities for cell 112. The BS 114 is similar to BS 110 except it serves a different cell from that of BS 110. The BS 114 serves a certain geographic area that includes at least a cell 116. A plurality of UEs 122 associated with the cell 116 communicates with the BS 114 on one or more specific frequencies, the BS 114 providing control and radio air interface functionalities for cell 116.
Each of the BSs 110, 114 communicates with the core network 120. Core network 120 includes, but is not limited to, base station controllers (BSCs), a mobile switching center (MSC), and other 2G/3G network components providing network functionalities not provided by a BS.
The cells 104, 108, 112, 116 may or may not be immediately co-located next to each other. As another example, the respective coverage areas of the cells 104, 108, 112, 116 may overlap with each other. As still another example, the respective coverage areas of the cells 104, 108, 112, 116 may be distinct or isolated from each other. It is understood that the network 100 includes more than two eNodeBs and more than two BSs, each of such eNodeBs or BSs serving a cell.
The UEs 122 (also referred to as mobile devices) comprises a variety of devices that communicate within the network 100 including, but not limited to, cellular telephones, smart phones, tablets, laptops, desktops, personal computers, servers, personal digital assistants (PDAs), web appliances, set-top box (STB), a network router, switch or bridge, and the like. The UEs 122 comprise dual RAT UEs capable of switching operation between the LTE network and 2G/3G network. In one embodiment, each of the UEs 122 may access the 2G/3G network via BS 110 or 114 for voice (phone calls) and access the LTE network via eNodeB 102 or 106 for data (web browsing, emails).
When operating in LTE mode, the UEs 122 located in respective cells 104, 108 transmits data to its respective eNodeB 102, 106 (uplink transmission) and receives data from its respective eNodeB 102, 106 (downlink transmission) using radio frames comprising Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiple Access (OFDMA) frames. For Release-10 or later LTE networks 101, carrier aggregation (CA) is supported, in which up to five frequency bands corresponding to five component carriers (CCs) can be aggregated to expand the overall bandwidth of the network (e.g., up to a bandwidth of 100 MHz). For each of the UEs 122 at a given point in time, a CC is defined as a given UE 122's primary cell (PCell). If more than one CC is configured for the given UE 122, the additional CCs are referred to as secondary cells (SCells). For instance, cell 104 can be designated as the PCell for a given UE 122 while cell 108 is designated as the SCell for the same given UE 122. In Release-10 or later LTE CA, a plurality of serving cells are served by the same eNodeB. For example, eNodeB 102 may serve cell 104 and one or more other cells not shown in
The processor 200 comprises one or more central processing units (CPUs), graphics processing units (GPUs), or both. The processor 200 provides processing and control functionalities for the eNodeBs 102, 106, BSs 110, 114, and UEs 122. Memory 202 comprises one or more transient and static memory units configured to store instructions and data for the eNodeBs 102, 106, BSs 110, 114, and UEs 122. The transceiver 204 comprises one or more transceivers including a multiple-input and multiple-output (MIMO) antenna to support MIMO communications. The transceiver 204 receives uplink transmissions and transmits downlink transmissions, among other things, from and to the UEs respectively.
The instructions 206 comprises one or more sets of instructions or software executed on a computing device (or machine) to cause such computing device (or machine) to perform any of the methodologies discussed herein. The instructions 206 (also referred to as computer- or machine-executable instructions) may reside, completely or at least partially, within the processor 200 and/or the memory 202 during execution thereof by the eNodeBs 102, 106, BSs 110, 114, and UEs 122. The processor 200 and memory 202 also comprise machine-readable media.
When the RF chain 302 is switched to the LTE BB 304, the given UE 122 operates in the LTE network and an antenna 308 transmits or receives wireless signals configured according to the LTE standard. When the RF chain 302 is switched to the 2G/3G BB 306, the given UE 122 operates in the 2G/3G network and the antenna transmits or receives wireless signals configured according to the 2G/3G standard. If the RE chain 302 is being used to support a LTE service, for example, then the RF chain 302 cannot simultaneously be used to support a 2G/3G service. Thus, the eNodeB associated with the given UE 122 is informed of which network the RF chain 302 is supporting.
Next at a block 404a, the given eNodeB transmits to the given UE 122, RRC connection reconfiguration signaling comprising CA configuration if there is no voice call on-going in 2G/3G (communication 504 in
At a block 408a, in response to receiving the CS service indicator, the given eNodeB determines whether to send a message for the given UE 122 to release a SCell or to handover to a new PCell. In CA, there are a number of serving cells, one cell for each CC included in the CA. The cell corresponding to a given CC operates at a specific frequency band from the other CCs within the CA. The coverage area of a cell for a CC can be different from a cell for another CC. The cells for one or more CCs can be served by the same eNodeB. When more than one CC is associated with the given UE 122 (in other words, more than one cell is associated with the given UE 122), the cell corresponding to one of these CCs is designated as the PCell for the given UE 122. The remaining cells corresponding to the remaining associated CCs are referred to as SCells for the given UE 122. Only the PCell is responsible for mobility management such as providing non-access-stratum (NAS) mobility information or security keys. SCells can be added or removed, as required, for the given UE 122 with RRC connection reconfiguration, while the PCell association changes by performing handover to a new/different PCell.
The given eNodeB transmits a RRC connection reconfiguration message/signaling to the given UE 122 to release a particular SCell associated with the given UE 122, if the particular SCell corresponds to the frequency band that is shared with 2G/3G service (communication 508 in
Once the given UE 122 has taken action in accordance with the RRC connection reconfiguration message in block 408a, the given UE 122 turns on 2G/3G service 509 (
At a block 402b of
Next at a block 404b, the given eNodeB transmits to the given UE 122, RRC connection reconfiguration signaling comprising CA configuration if there is no voice call on-going in 2G/3G (communication 514 in
At a block 408b, in response to receiving the paging request, the given eNodeB determines whether to send a message for the given UE 122 to release a SCell or to handover to a new PCell. The given eNodeB transmits a RRC connection reconfiguration message/signaling to the given UE 122 to release a particular SCell associated with the given UE 122, if the particular SCell corresponds to the frequency band that is shared with 2G/3G service (communication 518 in
Once the given UE 122 has taken action in accordance with the RRC connection reconfiguration message in block 408b, the given UE 122 turns on 2G/3G service 519 (
In some embodiments, at the block 408b, in order to reduce delay in starting the voice call using the 2G/3G network 103 due to page reception, the given eNodeB can send the 2G/3G paging to the given UE 122 (rather than a given BS of the 2G/3G network 103, such as BS 110 or 114, sending the 2G/3G paging to the given UE 122). Such 2G/3G paging information (also referred to as 2G/3G voice call indication) can be included in the RRC connection reconfiguration message pertaining to SCell release or PCell HO (communication 518). Then the 2G/3G network 103 can start random access for the MT call without receiving a return page in the 2G/3G cell.
Next at a block 422a of
In response to receiving the non-usable frequency indication, the given eNodeB determines and transmits RRC connection reconfiguration signaling instructing the UE 122 to release a particular SCell or to perform inter-frequency HO of PCell to another carrier frequency (block 426a) (communication 526). Additional details regarding SCell release or PCell HO is discussed above with respect to blocks 408a and b. Once the given UE 122 has taken action in accordance with the RRC connection reconfiguration message in block 426a, the given UE 122 turns on 2G/3G 527 and camps on a 2G/3G cell for the duration of the MO call. While camping on a 2G/3G cell, the given UE 122 maintains connection with LTE cells (the associated PCell and SCell(s) except for the cell instructed to be released in block 426a).
In contrast to the UE capability signaling scheme discussed above with respect to
Next at a block 422b of
The UE 122 may know that the 2G/3G paging occasion as already defined by the 2G/3G network 103 or a new 2G/3G paging occasion will be defined for this operation in the LTE network 101. If the paging occasion is already defined, the UE 122 also provides paging related parameters and information about the difference of system frame number between LTE and 2G/3G to the given eNodeB. In some embodiments, the non-usable frequency indication or additional signaling sent by the UE 122 with the non-usable frequency indication provides additional information such as, but not limited to, the following. Such information is correspondingly received by the eNodeB at the block 426a.
- The purpose of the non-usable frequency indication such as whether it is for paging, voice call, or measurement.
- If the non-usable frequency indication pertains to paging or measurement, also specifying the periodicity and duration of the non-usable frequency band/frequency band combination. With this information, the eNodeB can configure a measurement gap pattern to enable the UE 122 to receive a 2G/3G paging. The measurement gap pattern may comprise an existing measurement gap pattern or a new measurement gap pattern that is introduced to align with the 2G/3G paging cycle and duration. The measurement gap pattern may apply to a subset of the serving cells to be turned off to receive 2G/3G paging. Depending on the configuration of the measurement gap pattern, the UE 122 may not need to transmit a non-usable frequency indication each paging cycle to receive a 2G/3G paging.
- Measurement information is needed when the measurement gap pattern is not configured.
In response to receiving the non-usable frequency indication (and other possible information discussed immediately above), the given eNodeB determines and transmits RRC connection reconfiguration signaling instructing the UE 122 to release a particular SCell or to perform inter-frequency HO of PCell to another carrier frequency (block 426b) (communication 536). Additional details regarding SCell release or PCell HO is discussed above with respect to blocks 408a and b.
If 2G/3G operation is possible based on the RRC connection reconfiguration signaling, the UE 122 turns on 2G/3G 537 (e.g., camps on a 2G/3G cell) and attempts to receive 2G/3G paging. When a MT voice call starts 538, the 2G/3G network 103 (e.g., a BS, such as BS 110 or 114) sends a 2G/3G paging to the given UE 122 (communication 540 in
Alternatively, the eNodeB can inform the UE 122 that there is a 2G/3G paging pending. In response, the UE 122 returns a non-usable frequency indication to the eNodeB to temporarily reserve frequency band/frequency band combination for use on the 2G/3G network 103 for the 2G/3G voice call. In this case the UE 122 may not require 2G/3G paging from the 2G/3G network 103 (such as communication 540) in order to conduct the 2G/3G voice call.
In contrast to the RRC signaling approach discussed above, an alternative embodiment for informing the eNodeB whether the RF chain 302 of a given UE 122 is/will be used for 2G/3G service rather than LTE service is via enhancement of medium access control (MAC) signaling.
If dedicated SR resource(s) are configured and exists (yes branch of block 604), then the UE 122 transmits SR information on the physical uplink control channel (PUCCH) included in at least one subframe of a radio frame to the eNodeB (block 606). If dedicated SR resource(s) are not allocated for the UE 122 (no branch of block 604), then the UE 122 initiates and participates in Random Access procedure to provide the requisite 2G/3G voice call information to the eNodeB (block 608).
In response to either the SR information or Random Access procedure, the eNodeB schedules uplink physical uplink shared channel (PUSCH) resource. The UE 122 transmits Activation/Deactivation request MAC CE signaling (block 610). In response to such request signaling, the eNodeB sends an Activation/Deactivation MAC CE signaling instructing the UE 122 to deactivate a particular SCell or PCell operating in the LTE frequency band that cannot co-exist with the 2G/3G frequency band to be used for the 2G/3G voice call. The Activation/Deactivation MAC CE signaling is received by the UE 122, at a block 612. Thus, the Activation/Deactivation request MAC CE signaling is sent by the UE 122 sooner than it otherwise would be—triggered by the SR information on the PUCCH or Random Access procedure—in order to prevent delay in start of the voice call on the 2G/3G network. The UE 122 can request the deactivation of the PCell in the Activation/Deactivation request MAC CE signaling.
As another alternative embodiment, assignment of PCell and SCells and/or CCs for the PCell and SCells for the given UE 122 can be controlled by the network 100 to avoid frequency co-existence issues from occurring beforehand. As shown in an example flow diagram 700 of
As another example, because a PCell cannot be deactivated for a given UE 122, if the RF chain 302 is capable of supporting all LTE frequency bands (block 702b), the network 100 assigns a cell having the same frequency band/combination as would be used for 2G/3G service by the RF chain 302 as a SCell (rather than a PCell) (block 704b). Thus, that SCell may be deactivated when the RF chain 302 is switched to support 2G/3G service.
The term “machine-readable medium,” “computer readable medium,” and the like should be taken to include a single medium or multiple media (e.g., a centralized or distributed database, and/or associated caches and servers) that store the one or more sets of instructions. The term “machine-readable medium” shall also be taken to include any medium that is capable of storing, encoding or carrying a set of instructions for execution by the machine and that cause the machine to perform any one or more of the methodologies of the present disclosure. The term “machine-readable medium” shall accordingly be taken to include, but not be limited to, solid-state memories, optical and magnetic media, and carrier wave signals.
It will be appreciated that, for clarity purposes, the above description describes some embodiments with reference to different functional units or processors. However, it will be apparent that any suitable distribution of functionality between different functional units, processors or domains may be used without detracting from embodiments of the invention. For example, functionality illustrated to be performed by separate processors or controllers may be performed by the same processor or controller. Hence, references to specific functional units are only to be seen as references to suitable means for providing the described functionality, rather than indicative of a strict logical or physical structure or organization.
Although the present invention has been described in connection with some embodiments, it is not intended to be limited to the specific form set forth herein. One skilled in the art would recognize that various features of the described embodiments may be combined in accordance with the invention. Moreover, it will be appreciated that various modifications and alterations may be made by those skilled in the art without departing from the scope of the invention.
The Abstract of the Disclosure is provided to quickly ascertain the nature of the technical disclosure. It is submitted with the understanding that it will not be used to interpret or limit the scope or meaning of the claims. In addition, in the foregoing Detailed Description, it can be seen that various features are grouped together in a single embodiment for the purpose of streamlining the disclosure. This method of disclosure is not to be interpreted as reflecting an intention that the claimed embodiments require more features than are expressly recited in each claim. Rather, as the following claims reflect, inventive subject matter lies in less than all features of a single disclosed embodiment. Thus the following claims are hereby incorporated into the Detailed Description, with each claim standing on its own as a separate embodiment.
1. A mobile device, comprising:
- a 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) long term evolution (LTE) baseband circuitry;
- a 2nd Generation (2G) or 3rd Generation (3G) baseband circuitry; and
- a radio frequency (RE) chain selectively switchable between the LTE baseband circuitry and the 2G or 3G baseband circuitry,
- wherein the RE chain is arranged to transmit at least a radio frame including a scheduling request (SR) provided in a physical uplink control channel (PUCCH) or to initiate a Random Access procedure to an evolved node B (eNodeB) associated with a LTE network and the RF chain is further arranged to transmit, over a frequency band and in response to the SR in the PUCCH or the Random Access procedure, an Activation/Deactivation request medium access control (MAC) control element (CE) wherein the Activation/Deactivation MAC CE comprises an instruction to deactivate a secondary cell included in the LTE network when the frequency band is the same as a frequency band supported by a 2G or 3G network, wherein the secondary cell comprises a component carrier, configured for the mobile device, different from a primary component carrier of a primary cell configured for the mobile device and both the primary and secondary cells are part of the LTE network.
2. The mobile device of claim 1, wherein the Activation/Deactivation request MAC CE is provided in response to a voice call to be started supported by the 2G or 3G baseband circuitry coupled to the RF chain.
3. The mobile device of claim 2, wherein the voice call comprises a mobile originating (MO) voice call or a mobile terminating (MT) voice call.
4. The mobile device of claim 1, wherein the RE chain is further arranged to transmit the radio frame including the SR when a dedicated SR resource has been allocated by the eNodeB for the mobile device.
5. The mobile device of claim 1, wherein the mobile device initiates the Random Access procedure when no dedicated SR resource has been allocated by the eNodeB for the mobile device.
6. The mobile device of claim 1, wherein the mobile device receives physical uplink shared channel (PUSCH) resource scheduled by the eNodeB.
7. The mobile device of claim 6, wherein the mobile device sends the Activation/Deactivation request MAC CE in the PUSCH resource scheduled by the eNodeB.
8. The mobile device of claim 1, wherein the mobile device transmits an Activation/Deactivation MAC CE signaling to the eNodeB in response to the Activation/Deactivation request MAC CE provided by the mobile device.
9. The mobile device of claim 8, wherein the Activation/Deactivation request MAC CE comprises identification of a cell to be activated or deactivated.
10. The mobile device of claim 1, wherein the LTE network operates in time division duplexing (TDD) mode or frequency division duplexing (FDD) mode.
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Filed: Sep 28, 2012
Date of Patent: Feb 23, 2016
Patent Publication Number: 20130244656
Assignee: Intel Corporation (Santa Clara, CA)
Inventors: Youn Hyoung Heo (Seoul), Yujian Zhang (Beijing), Mo-Han Fong (Sunnyvale, CA)
Primary Examiner: Dinh P Nguyen
Application Number: 13/631,341
International Classification: H04W 72/04 (20090101); H04W 52/02 (20090101); H04W 52/14 (20090101); H04W 24/02 (20090101); H04W 4/06 (20090101); H04W 72/12 (20090101); H04W 74/08 (20090101); H04N 21/414 (20110101); H04N 21/6408 (20110101); H04L 5/00 (20060101); H04L 5/14 (20060101); H04L 1/18 (20060101);