Technical Committee (TC) Mobile Standards Group (MSG) Activity Report 2021

Chair: Dominique Everaere, Ericsson Limited

Responsible for identifying European regulatory requirements for cellular systems developed by the Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPPTM), and for developing Harmonised Standards and related ETSI standards for the IMT family of cellular systems and technologies evolving from them. 

The primary responsibility of our Mobile Standards Technical Committee (TC MSG) TC MSG is to perform work regarding areas of activity as requested by standardisation requests (mandates) from the European Commission and all other tasks attributed to ETSI in support of European regulation of related systems.

As well as identifying European regulatory requirements on cellular systems to be developed by 3GPP, TC MSG develops Harmonised Standards covering essential requirements under article 3.2 of the Radio Equipment Directive 2014/53/EU and related ETSI deliverables for GSM as well as the IMT family of technologies and their evolution. The committee maintains close liaison with 3GPP, 3GPP2, IEEE and the WiMAX Forum as well as other ETSI bodies which might be affected by deliverables produced by MSG.

TC MSG works alongside ETSI’s Electromagnetic Compatibility and Radio Spectrum Matters Committee (TC ERM) in the joint Task Force for European Standards for IMT 2000 and IMT 2020 (TFES). TFES has primary responsibility to develop European Norms (ENs) intended to become Harmonised Standards under the Radio Equipment Directive (RED) for members of the IMT family of radio interfaces (GSM, UMTS, LTE, NB-IoT and 5G NR), as defined in ITU-R Recommendation M.1457.

In relation to the Radio Equipment Directive – and to align with different 3GPP releases including support for 5G – in 2021 TC MSG continued to revise the multi-part Harmonised European Standard on access to radio spectrum for IMT cellular networks, variously addressing base stations, repeaters, user equipment and conformance testing. Accordingly the committee published updates to various parts of EN 301 908, notably:

EN 301 908-1 – Part 1: Introduction and common requirements relevant for IMT equipment up to and including 3GPP Release 15

EN 301 908-14 – Part 14: Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (E-UTRA) base stations

EN 301 908-15 – Part 15: Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (E-UTRA FDD) repeaters

EN 301 908-18 – Part 18: E-UTRA, UTRA and GSM/EDGE Multi-Standard Radio (MSR) base stations.

In October these publications were submitted to the EC, in anticipation of citation in the Official Journal of the EU (OJEU) hopefully in early in 2022.

Work meanwhile progressed on development and/or revision of further parts of the Harmonised European Standard:

  • EN 301 908-3 – Part 3: CDMA Direct Spread (UTRA FDD) base stations
  • EN 301 908-13 – Part 13: Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (E-UTRA) user equipment, including OTA requirements
  • EN 301 908-23 – Part 23: Active Antenna System (AAS) base stations
  • EN 301 908-24 – Part 24: New Radio (NR) base stations
  • EN 301 908-25 – Part 25: New Radio (NR) user equipment

To align with changes in regulation we published a revision of our Harmonised European Standard EN 302 480 regarding access to radio spectrum for Mobile Communication On Board Aircraft (MCOBA) systems.

In the domain of regulatory requirements for IMT cellular network base stations, we published a new Technical Specification TS 103 807 that addresses additional requirements arising from EC/CEPT spectrum regulation applying to specific cases in certain geographical areas.

We issued a new Technical Report TR 103 810 that presents an independent evaluation report to ITU-R WP 5D regarding the DECT-2020 NR component RIT of ETSI’s successful technology proposal to IMT-2020.

A significant part of the committee’s work is in support of the European Commission’s next generation eCall initiative, where we interact with CEPT/ECC and CEN/TC 278 groups with a focus on testing. Accordingly we published a revision to our Technical Specification TS 103 428 on eCall HLAP (High Level Application Protocols) interoperability testing, from the perspective of eCall aftermarket devices and the addition of new features.

During the year work was also launched on two further deliverables:

  • Technical Specification on PAS process for adoption of O-RAN fronthaul control, user and synchronization plane specification v7.01
  • Revision to Technical Specification on Next Generation eCall HLAP interoperability testing 

See the full list of current TC MSG Work Items here.