This project is raising the awareness of potential customers to the benefits obtainable from broadband communications. This is being achieved through the provision of an ATM test-bed with a capability for interconnection with other broadband islands and on which traffic experiments are being performed.
The main objective of the research was to raise the awareness of potential customers to the benefits to be obtained from broadband communications. This was approached through the provision through the provision of an asynchronous transfer mode (ATM) test bed, which had a capability for interconnection with other broadband islands.
Key issues in the research were:
integrated broadband communications (IBC) network prototype integration;
the provision of a supported ATM test infrastructure;
the interoperability between broadband platforms covering wide geographical areas; the verification of IBC system specifications and interfaces;
the interconnection of ATM networks to existing networks and transmission systems;
traffic experiments, under controlled conditions and using real sources.
As a result of the research, specifications of the external interfaces for all the interconnection equipment being developed in the project (2 megabit per second and 140 megabit per second mappers, narrowband (N-ISDN) and frame relay interworking units) are available. Collaborative agreements have been established for the demonstration of pilot broadband applications, terminal equipment and other interworking capabilities (eg ATM and distributed queue dual bus (DQDB), and ATM over satellite). Influential contributions have been made to the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) and Comite Consultatif International Telegraphique et Telephonique (CCITT) in the areas of frame relaying, broadband integrated services digital network (B-ISDN) interworking, and the mapping of ATM cells into existing plesiochronous digital hierarchy (PDH) transmission systems.The first European demonstration of ATM over satellite was made within this project.
For a successful introduction of the asynchronous transmission (ATM) based broadband integrated services digital network (ISDN) (B-ISDN) it is very important to provide access to existing networks, in particular to the narrow band ISDN (N-ISDN). This requires interworking functions which are able to connect the 2 networks on the physical layer but also on higher layers of the protocol stack. Moreover, the user plane and the control plane of the protocol stack have to be distinguished. The interworking of the different signalling protocols within the control planes of B-ISDN and N-ISDN has been examined. After the investigation of the concepts for the signalling interworking, a concrete implementation of an interworking unit between an ATM testbed and a public N-ISDN was developed.
This project makes available a substantial ATM testbed, comprising nodes containing terminal equipment and switches which are representative of those to be found in both customer premises and public broadband networks. All switching nodes are interconnected via standardised ATM optical interfaces to form a prototype broadband network. Terminal adapters are provided to interface with non-ATM terminals. A number of different interworking units are being developed within the project. The technique of transporting LAN data across an ATM network in Frame Relay format is being demonstrated, also with interworking to terminals attached to N-ISDN. Experiments using real traffic sources will validate existing theoretical models, particularly in the areas of CAC and UPT. Connections to other broadband testbeds are made via the European ATM Pilot Network.
- IBC Network prototype integration.
- Provision of a supported ATM test infrastructure.
- Provision of inter-operability between broadband platforms covering a wide geographical area.
- Verification of IBC system specifications and interfaces.
- Interconnection of ATM networks to existing networks.
- Traffic experiments under controlled conditions and using real sources.
This project offers unique opportunities to raise the awareness of potential customers regarding the benefits of broadband communications. It also demonstrates to network operators the feasibility of running pilot applications over an ATM system and validates traffic control and management algorithms through experiments and measurements on an ATM network under near real conditions. The work will extend the European pool of knowledge on ATM.
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