FirstNet was created to be a force-multiplier for first responders – to give public safety 21st century communication tools to help save lives, solve crimes and keep our communities and emergency responders safe. To do that, FirstNet will build a new Band Class 14 network designed to be reliable, functional, safe and secure, and provide optimal levels of operational capability at all times. For the first time, public safety communications will be based on commercial standards. This will bring the benefits of lower costs, consumer-driven economies of scale and rapid evolution of advanced communication capabilities.
The law that established FirstNet specified that the network shall be based on the minimum technical requirements on the commercial standards for Long Term Evolution (LTE) service. LTE is the evolution of a proven technology, which is now in its fourth generation. With each generation comes improvement in speed and functionality. Standards work to enhance and evolve 4G LTE is continuing on a global basis. FirstNet is involved in the standards process and working closely with public safety organizations to support the development of standards and functionality that meet the needs of the public safety users that FirstNet will serve. Much of the current focus is on an international set of standards that will allow FirstNet to offer mission-critical voice (MCV) when these capabilities become available. The same MCV technologies will then work across all standards-based equipment and networks worldwide.
FirstNet broadly defines its LTE network in distinct domains: Core Network, Transport Backhaul, Radio Access Network (RAN), Applications and Public Safety Devices.
OSS: An Operational Support System is a set of programs that help a communications service provider monitor, control, analyze, and manage a telephone or computer network.
BSS: Business Support Systems are the components that a telecommunications service provider (or telco) uses to run its business operations towards customers. Together with Operational Support Systems, they are used to support various end-to-end telecommunication services (e.g., telephone services).
PSTN: Public Switched Telephone Network also referred to as plain old telephone service. It is a term used to refer to all telephone networks worldwide.
ESInet: The NG911 vision relies on 911-specific application functionality on an Emergency Services IP Network (ESInet) to deliver voice, video, text, and data “calls” to the Public Safety Answering Point.
NOC: A Network Operations Center is one or more locations from which monitoring, control and management are exercised over a telecommunications network. A NOC is equipped with Operational Support Systems (OSS) and operations personnel to establish tier 1, 2 and 3 operational procedures.
SOC: A Security Operations Center is a centralized unit equipped with data processing technology, and responsible for 24/7/365 cybersecurity monitoring of the core network infrastructure, devices, data, and applications, doing monitoring and analysis of user, system, and network accesses, assessing the integrity of systems and data files, recognition and analysis of activity patterns that are indicative of an incident or intrusion, and analysis of logs for abnormal use patterns.
IPX: IP Exchange is a telecommunications interconnection model for the exchange of IP based traffic between roaming partner networks, as well as other types of service provider (such as ISP). IPX is developed by the GSM Association.