Burnham, EnglandTest-and-measurement conglomerate Aeroflex is rolling out test capability to address the emerging development and conformance test requirements of A-GPS (Assisted-GPS). A-GPS is the heart of location-based services for cellphones. Aimed at reducing time to market and the need for costly field trials, Aeroflex's multiple systems are intended to test A-GPS in the lab.
The new test capability includes systems for all major cellular technologies, including GSM, GPRS/EDGE, UMTS , and CDMA (CDMA2000 to 1x-EVDO). The location-based test systems also provide a single approach for both the verification of signaling protocols as well as RF performance testing of A-GPS devices.
An Integrated Environment
Aeroflex’s system also comprises an integrated environment for repeatable R&D and conformance verification testing. In use, the systems combine a 12 channel GPS simulator with the company's existing conformance test platforms.
The systems include test-case packages for 3GPP (Third Generation Partnership Project), and 3GPP2 wireless standards, and Network Assistance Data elements for flexible control over assistance data messaging. It also includes test-cases and support for LCS (Location Services) message exchange, along with support for MS-Based and MS-Assisted positioning methods.
Aeroflex's new test systems also support control and user plane techniques using LCS protocols, realtime logging/decoding of protocol signaling messages between mobile and network, and automatic report generation and analysis of results for the device under test.
The GSM and GPRS/EDGE A-GPS System is based on Aeroflex's 6103 AIME/CT GSM Conformance Test System, and includes a SMLC (Serving Mobile Location Center) emulator for control over Assistance Data Messaging, as well as all the GPS signaling test cases as defined by the 3GPP TS 51.010 docs.
Although there are currently no RF performance test cases defined for GSM, the system is designed to be upgradeable for such support.
As mentioned, the UMTS A-GPS System is based on the Aeroflex 6401 AIME/CT UMTS Conformance Test System. It includes the same SMLC emulator as the GSM system, along with the protocol signaling test cases as defined by 3GPP TS 34.123, and the RF performance test cases as defined by 3GPP TS 34.171.
The CDMA Spin
Aeroflex's CDMA A-GPS System is based on the firm's 6204 CDMA Conformance Test System. It includes a software-emulated IS801 PDE (Position Determination Entity) network element for control over Assistance Data Messaging, and support for all GPS, AFLT (Advanced Forward Link Trilateration), and hybrid, protocol signaling, and RF performance test cases defined by TIA 916 (C.S0036).
This development was initially driven by the needs of the emergency services for which the US's FCC (Federal Communications Commission) has set aggressive timescales for the mandatory support of accurate location-based services by the end of 2005. It is likely the requirement will take on a wider dimension as network operators worldwide look to generate revenue streams from accurate, commercially-oriented location-based services that A-GPS will be able to deliver.
For more information, contact Racal Instruments Wireless Solutions, An Aeroflex Company, 480 Bath Road, Burnham, Berkshire SL1 6BE, England. Phone: +44 (0) 1628 604455. Fax: +44 (0) 1628 662017
Aeroflex, +44 (0) 1628 604455, www.aeroflex.com