2017 Volume E100.B Issue 11 Pages 1992-2006
One of the key objectives of 5G is to evolve the current mobile network architecture from “one-fit-all” design model to a more customized and dynamically scaling one that enables the deployment of parallel systems, tailored to the service requirements on top of a shared infrastructure. Indeed, the envisioned 5G services may require different needs in terms of capacity, latency, bandwidth, reliability and security, which cannot be efficiently sustained by the same network infrastructure. Coming to address these customization challenges, network softwarization expressed through Software Defined Networking (SDN) programmable network infrastructures, Network Function Virtualization (NFV) running network functions as software and cloud computing flexibility paradigms, is seen as a possible panacea to addressing the variations in the network requirements posed by the 5G use cases. This will enable network flexibility and programmability, allow the creation and lifecycle management of virtual network slices tailored to the needs of 5G verticals expressed in the form of Mobile Virtual Network Operators (MVNOs) for automotive, eHealth, massive IoT, massive multimedia broadband. In this vein, this paper introduces a potential 5G architecture that enables the orchestration, instantiation and management of end-to-end network slices over multiple administrative and technological domains. The architecture is described from both the management and the service perspective, underlining the common functionality as well as how the response to the diversified service requirements can be achieved through proper software network components development.