Long Term Evolution

The 3GPP™ radio interface, UTRA (Universal Terrestrial Radio Access), with the enhancements provided by High Speed Packet Access (HSPA), for both downlink and uplink, will remain highly competitive for several years. Nevertheless, the industry that has developed the 3GPP™ technologies is anxious to ensure the continued competitiveness of those technologies and has launched a Long Term Evolution project within 3GPP.

The focus of the LTE project is on:

  • enhancement of the Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (UTRA)
  • optimization of the UTRAN architecture.

A parallel activity is taking place on the evolution of the 3GPP™ System Architecture (SAE).

A more complete summary of the LTE and SAE programmes can be found on the 3GPP™ website.

Long Term Evolution (LTE) of the 3GPP radio technology

The basic criteria for the work on LTE were:

  • Demand for higher data rates
  • Expectations of additional 3G spectrum allocations
  • Greater flexibility in frequency allocations
  • Continued cost reduction
  • Keeping up with other technologies.

More specifically:

  • Significantly increased peak data rates
  • Increased bitrates at the edge of cells
  • Improved spectrum efficiency
  • Improved latency
  • Scaleable bandwidth
  • Reduced capital and operational expenditure
  • Acceptable system and terminal complexity, cost and power consumption
  • Compatibility with earlier releases and with other systems
  • Optimized for low mobile speed but supporting high mobile speed (up to 500 km/h).

ETSI TR 125 913 collects together all the agreed requirements for the Evolved UTRA & UTRAN.

In response to these requirements, various radio technologies were considered but the conclusion was that the downlink would use Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiplexing (OFDM) and the uplink would use Single Carrier - Frequency Division Multiple Access (SC-FDMA). Supported downlink data-modulation schemes are QPSK, 16QAM, and 64QAM, whilst the possible uplink data-modulation schemes are BPSK, QPSK, 8PSK and 16QAM.

3GPP™ Technical Report TR 25.814 defines the physical layer aspects of Evolved UTRA.

System Architecture Evolution (SAE)

The objectives of the complementary SAE study were:

  • 'to develop a framework for an evolution or migration of the 3GPP™ system to a higher-data-rate, lower-latency, packet-optimized system that supports multiple Radio Access Technologies.
  • The focus of this work is on the PS domain with the assumption that voice services are supported in this domain'.

The particular focus has been on:

  • enhancement of Packet Switched technology to cope with rapid growth in IP traffic, i.e.

    • higher data rates
    • lower latency
    • packet-optimized system
  • through
    • fully IP network
    • simplified network architecture
    • distributed control.

The possible use of various access technologies (wireless and wired) has been assumed - not just Enhanced UTRA.

The report of the SAE study can be found in 3GPP™ Technical Report TR 23.882.

The following is a list of the 20 latest published ETSI standards on long term evolution.

A full list of related standards in the public domain is accessible via the ETSI standards search. Via this interface you can also subscribe for alerts on updates of ETSI standards.

For work in progress see the ETSI Work Programme on the Portal.

Standard No. Standard title.
TS 136 523-3 LTE; Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (E-UTRA) and Evolved Packet Core (EPC); User Equipment (UE) conformance specification; Part 3: Test suites (3GPP TS 36.523-3 version 14.4.0 Release 14)
TS 136 523-3 LTE; Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (E-UTRA) and Evolved Packet Core (EPC); User Equipment (UE) conformance specification; Part 3: Test suites (3GPP TS 36.523-3 version 15.0.0 Release 15)
TS 134 108 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Common test environments for User Equipment (UE); Conformance testing (3GPP TS 34.108 version 14.2.0 Release 14)
TS 136 300 LTE; Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (E-UTRA) and Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access Network (E-UTRAN); Overall description; Stage 2 (3GPP TS 36.300 version 13.12.0 Release 13)
TS 136 300 LTE; Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (E-UTRA) and Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access Network (E-UTRAN); Overall description; Stage 2 (3GPP TS 36.300 version 14.7.0 Release 14)
TS 136 300 LTE; Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (E-UTRA) and Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access Network (E-UTRAN); Overall description; Stage 2 (3GPP TS 36.300 version 15.2.0 Release 15)
TS 128 305 Digital cellular telecommunications system (Phase 2+) (GSM); Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; 5G; Control and monitoring of Power, Energy and Environmental (PEE) parameters Integration Reference Point (IRP); Information Service (IS) (3GPP TS 28.305 version 15.0.0 Release 15)
TS 128 306 Digital cellular telecommunications system (Phase 2+) (GSM); Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; 5G; Control and monitoring of Power, Energy and Environmental (PEE) parameters Integration Reference Point (IRP); Solution Set (SS) definitions (3GPP TS 28.306 version 15.0.0 Release 15)
TS 128 623 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Telecommunication management; Generic Network Resource Model (NRM) Integration Reference Point (IRP); Solution Set (SS) definitions (3GPP TS 28.623 version 15.0.0 Release 15)
TS 128 627 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Telecommunication management; Self-Organizing Networks (SON) Policy Network Resource Model (NRM) Integration Reference Point (IRP); Requirements (3GPP TS 28.627 version 15.0.0 Release 15)
TS 128 628 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Telecommunication management; Self-Organizing Networks (SON) Policy Network Resource Model (NRM) Integration Reference Point (IRP); Information Service (IS) (3GPP TS 28.628 version 15.0.0 Release 15)
TS 128 629 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Telecommunication management; Self-Organizing Networks (SON) Policy Network Resource Model (NRM) Integration Reference Point (IRP); Solution Set (SS) definitions (3GPP TS 28.629 version 15.0.0 Release 15)
TS 128 659 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Telecommunication management; Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access Network (E-UTRAN) Network Resource Model (NRM) Integration Reference Point (IRP); Solution Set (SS) definitions (3GPP TS 28.659 version 15.1.0 Release 15)
TS 129 118 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Mobility Management Entity (MME) - Visitor Location Register (VLR) SGs interface specification (3GPP TS 29.118 version 15.2.0 Release 15)
TS 129 201 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Representational State Transfer (REST) reference point between Application Function (AF) and Protocol Converter (PC) (3GPP TS 29.201 version 15.0.0 Release 15)
TS 129 219 Digital cellular telecommunications system (Phase 2+) (GSM); Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Policy and charging control: Spending limit reporting over Sy reference point (3GPP TS 29.219 version 15.1.0 Release 15)
TS 129 292 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Interworking between the IP Multimedia (IM) Core Network (CN) subsystem (IMS) and MSC Server for IMS Centralized Services (ICS) (3GPP TS 29.292 version 15.1.0 Release 15)
TS 129 128 LTE; Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); Mobility Management Entity (MME) and Serving GPRS Support Node (SGSN) interfaces for interworking with packet data networks and applications (3GPP TS 29.128 version 15.3.0 Release 15)
TS 129 168 Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Cell Broadcast Centre interfaces with the Evolved Packet Core; Stage 3 (3GPP TS 29.168 version 15.0.0 Release 15)
TS 129 171 Digital cellular telecommunications system (Phase 2+) (GSM); Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS); LTE; Location Services (LCS); LCS Application Protocol (LCS-AP) between the Mobile Management Entity (MME) and Evolved Serving Mobile Location Centre (E-SMLC); SLs interface (3GPP TS 29.171 version 15.0.0 Release 15)