VIP WG End to End Network Slicing

A new WWRF Working Group proposal

Motivation

The fifth generation of mobile networks (5G) is expected to serve diverse applications with various traffic types and requirements, heterogeneous networks from end-to-end covering all segments, distributed cloud infrastructures, and billions of devices and terminals with diverse communication and computation capabilities for mobile broadband and Internet of Things (IoT) devices and diverse market segments (mobile broadband, factories of the future, media, automotive, ehealth). To meet these requirements and to develop a shared converged network with futureproof scalability and flexibility, network slicing is considered as one of the key technologies.   
With network slicing, one network can be partitioned into multiple highly flexible, end-to-end dedicated network and cloud infrastructure slices, each architected and optimized for a specific vertical application or services. Such network slicing already starts to happen in the telecommunications industry, usually in the software defined core networks though virtualization technology and sometimes in the radio air interface through resource partition and applying tailored radio access scheme. We call this "vertical network slicing", since it turns one big network into multiple parallel vertical end-to-end networks sharing the same physical infrastructure.
Network slicing implementation is end-to-end. It may include slicing in the heterogeneous radio access network (RAN) and core network (CN). In the CN, network function virtualization (NFV) and software defined network (SDN) can be the technical enablers for network slicing: NFV and SDN virtualize the functions and network elements respectively so as to enable easily to configure/reuse virtual network elements and functions in each slice to meet application-specific requirement. In the RAN, slicing can be built on physical radio resources (e.g., transmission point, spectrum, time, etc.) or on logical resources abstracted from physical radio resources.


Objective

This working group is aimed at providing a venue for the industry to discuss and develop a long-range technology roadmap and solutions for E2E network slicing in 5G and beyond. Specifically, the following topics would be discussed in the working group:

 Concept and terms of network slices

 Network slicing criterion and granularity

 Radio-access network and core network architecture

 Enabling techniques in the RAN and CN

 Aspects on slice-based operation


Deliverables and timeline

Deliverables could include one white paper and contributions to standardization bodies such as 3GPP. The planned timeline is as follows



Supporting members

Supporting member name Intel Corporation,  CTTC, Huawei and the University of Piraeus