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Publication numberUS20110096769 A1
Publication typeApplication
Application numberUS 12/067,399
PCT numberPCT/KR2006/003991
Publication dateApr 28, 2011
Filing dateOct 2, 2006
Priority dateOct 7, 2005
Also published asUS8532606, US20080261557, WO2007043772A1, WO2007043773A1
Publication number067399, 12067399, PCT/2006/3991, PCT/KR/2006/003991, PCT/KR/2006/03991, PCT/KR/6/003991, PCT/KR/6/03991, PCT/KR2006/003991, PCT/KR2006/03991, PCT/KR2006003991, PCT/KR200603991, PCT/KR6/003991, PCT/KR6/03991, PCT/KR6003991, PCT/KR603991, US 2011/0096769 A1, US 2011/096769 A1, US 20110096769 A1, US 20110096769A1, US 2011096769 A1, US 2011096769A1, US-A1-20110096769, US-A1-2011096769, US2011/0096769A1, US2011/096769A1, US20110096769 A1, US20110096769A1, US2011096769 A1, US2011096769A1
InventorsDong Hi Sim
Original AssigneeDong Hi Sim
Export CitationBiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan
External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet
Method and System for Providing an Emergency Location Service
US 20110096769 A1
Abstract
Provided are a method and a system for providing an emergency location service using an IMS core. In the method, when the IMS core receives an emergency call initiating request message from a user equipment, the IMS core transmits a location service request message requesting for retrieving a location of the user equipment to a location retrieval subsystem in response to the emergency call initiating request message. Then, when the IMS core receives current location information of the user equipment, which is acquired through an access to the user equipment by the location retrieval subsystem having received the location service request message, from the location retrieval subsystem, the IMS core selects an emergency center on the basis of the current location information and transmits the emergency call initiating request message including the current location information to the selected emergency center. Then, an emergency call is established between the user equipment and the emergency center.
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Claims(37)
1. A method for providing an emergency location service using an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) core, the method comprising the steps of:
receiving an emergency call initiating request message from a user equipment;
transmitting a location service request message requesting for retrieving a location of the user equipment to a location retrieval subsystem in response to the emergency call initiating request message;
receiving a location service response message including current location information of the user equipment, which is acquired through an access to the user equipment by the location retrieval subsystem having received the location service request message, from the location retrieval subsystem; and
selecting an emergency center on the basis of the current location information and transmitting the emergency call initiating request message including the current location information to the selected emergency center.
2. The method according to claim 1, further comprising establishing an emergency call between the emergency center having received the emergency call initiating request message and the user equipment.
3. The method according to claim 1, wherein the location retrieval subsystem is a location retrieval function(LRF).
4. The method according to claim 1, wherein the location service request message includes identification information of the user equipment.
5. The method according to claim 4, wherein the identification information of the user equipment includes a session initiation protocol uniform resource identifier (SIP URI) or a telephone uniform resource identifier (TEL URI).
6. The method according to claim 4, wherein the location service request message further includes an IP address of the user equipment.
7. The method according to claim 1, wherein the location service request message includes identification information of an IP-connectivity access network (IP-CAN) for allowing the user equipment to access the IMS core.
8. The method according to claim 1, wherein the emergency call initiating request message received from the user equipment includes initial location information of the user equipment.
9. The method according to claim 8, wherein the step of transmitting the location service request message to the location retrieval subsystem is performed when the initial location information is not suitable for selecting an emergency center.
10. The method according to claim 8, wherein the initial location information is acquired by using the IP-CAN for allowing the user equipment to access the IMS core or by enabling the user equipment to access directly the location retrieval subsystem.
11. The method according to claim 1, wherein in the step of transmitting the emergency call initiating request message to the emergency center, ID information of the emergency center is also transmitted.
12. The method according to claim 11, wherein the ID information of the emergency center includes at least one of an emergency service routing digit (ESRD), an emergency service routing key (ESRK), an emergency service routing number (ESRN), and an emergency service query key (ESQK).
13. A method for providing an emergency location service, comprising the steps of:
transmitting an emergency call initiating request message from a user equipment to an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) core;
transmitting a first location service request message requesting for retrieving a location of the user equipment from the IMS core to a location retrieval subsystem;
acquiring, by the location retrieval subsystem which accesses the user equipment, current location information of the user equipment in response to the first location service request message;
transmitting a first location service response message including the current location information from the location retrieval subsystem to the IMS core;
transmitting the emergency call initiating request message including the current location information from the IMS core to a emergency center which is selected by the IMS core on the basis of the received current location information; and
establishing an emergency call between the emergency center and the user equipment in response to the received emergency call initiating request message.
14. The method according to claim 13, wherein the location retrieval subsystem is a location retrieval function (LRF).
15. The method according to claim 13, wherein the emergency call initiating request message received from the user equipment includes initial location information of the user equipment, and
wherein the step of transmitting the first location service request message to the location retrieval subsystem is performed when the initial location information is not suitable to select the emergency center.
16. The method according to claim 13, wherein the first location service request message includes identification information of the user equipment and identification information of the IP-CAN allowing the user equipment to access the IMS core.
17. The method according to claim 13, wherein the procedure of acquiring the current location information is performed using a user plane-based location service procedure.
18. The method according to claim 17, wherein the location service procedure is a secure user plane location (SUPL) procedure, and
wherein the location retrieval subsystem includes an emergency SUPL location platform (E-SLP), a home SUPL location platform (H-SLP), or a visited SUPL location platform (V-SLP)
19. The method according to claim 13, after the step of establishing the emergency call, further comprising the steps of:
transmitting a second location service request message from the emergency center to the location retrieving subsystem;
acquiring, by the location retrieval subsystem, updated location information of the user equipment in response to the second location service request message; and
transmitting the updated location information from the location retrieval subsystem to the emergency center.
20. The method according to claim 19, wherein the procedure of acquiring the updated location information is performed using an SUPL procedure, and wherein the location retrieval subsystem includes an E-SLP, an H-SLP, or a V-SLP.
21. The method according to claim 13, wherein in the step of transmitting of the emergency call initiating request message to the emergency center, information of identifying the emergency center is also transmitted.
22. The method according to claim 21, wherein the ID information of the emergency center includes at least one of an emergency service routing digit (ESRD), an emergency service routing key (ESRK), an emergency service routing number (ESRN), and an emergency service query key (ESQK).
23. The method according to claim 13, the IMS core includes an emergency call session control function (E-CSCF) and an emergency application server (E-AS) providing the routing information of the emergency center.
24. The method according to claim 23, wherein the E-CSCF is an entity taking charge of communication with the location retrieval subsystem and the selected emergency center.
25. The method according to claim 23, wherein the E-AS is an entity taking charge of communication with the location retrieval subsystem and the selected emergency center.
26. The method according to claim 23, wherein the E-CSCF is an entity taking charge of communication with the location retrieval subsystem, and the E-AS is an entity taking charge of communication with the selected emergency center.
27. The method according to claim 13, before the step of transmitting the emergency call initiating request message from the user equipment, further comprising the steps of:
transmitting a registration request message from the user equipment to the IMS core; and
transmitting an access acknowledgement message from the IMS core to the user equipment in response to the registration request message.
28. A method for providing an emergency location service, the method comprising the steps of:
transmitting an emergency call initiating request message including its own initial location information from a user equipment to an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) core;
determining, by the IMS core, whether the initial location information included in the emergency call initiating request message is sufficient for determining an emergency center;
transmitting the emergency call initiating request message from the IMS core to a emergency center which is selected by IMS core on the basis of the initial location information, in case it is determined that the initial location information is sufficient for determining the emergency center; and
establishing an emergency call between the emergency center having received the emergency call initiating request message and the user equipment.
29. The method according to claim 28, wherein the emergency call initiating request message includes at least one of an ID of the user equipment, emergency indicating information, capability of the user equipment, and a location ID in a network to which the user equipment belongs.
30. The method according to claim 28, after the step of establishing the emergency call, further comprising the steps of:
transmitting a location service request message requesting for updated location information of the user equipment from the emergency center to the location retrieval subsystem;
acquiring, by the location retrieval subsystem which accesses the user equipment, the updated location information of the user equipment in response to the location service request message; and
transmitting the updated location information from the location retrieval subsystem to the emergency center.
31. A method for providing an emergency location service using a user equipment, the method comprising the steps of:
transmitting a session connection request message including emergency indicator information to a core network;
accessing a location retrieval subsystem for acquiring current location information of the user equipment by measuring the current location of the user equipment in response to a request from the core network; and
establishing an emergency call in response to a session connection request from an emergency center which is selected by the core network on the basis of the current location information acquired by the location retrieval subsystem.
32. The method according to claim 31, wherein the emergency center receives the session connection request message including the current location information from the core network.
33. The method according to claim 33, wherein the core network is an IMS core.
34. The method according to claim 31, wherein the location retrieval subsystem is a location retrieval function (LRF).
35. A user equipment supporting an emergency location service, the user equipment comprising:
a processor which transmits a session connectivity request message including emergency indicator information to a core network, which accesses a location retrieval subsystem for acquiring current location information of the user equipment by measuring current location of the user equipment in response to a request from the core network, and which performs a session connection to an emergency center in response to a session connection request from the emergency center which is selected by the core network on the basis of the current location information acquired by the location retrieval subsystem.
36. The user equipment according to claim 35, wherein the core network is an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) core.
37. The user equipment according to claim 35, wherein the location retrieval subsystem is a location retrieval function (LRF).
Description
TECHNICAL FIELD

The present invention relates to an emergency location service, and more particularly, to a method and a system for providing an emergency location service using an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) core.

BACKGROUND ART

An IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) has attracted attentions as a core information technology for providing a new multimedia service in an IP (Internet Protocol) based next-generation communication environment. The IMS serves to unify IP networks and mobile communication environments and makes it possible to provide an IP-based multimedia service using user equipments by facilitating communications between the user equipments and the IP networks. Examples of the IP-based multimedia service can include an Internet telephony service, a remote video conference service, a voice mail service, and a location service.

One of signaling protocols which can be used in the IP-based multimedia service is a session initiation protocol (SIP). The SIP is a call control protocol of an application layer for retrieving a location of an opposite user equipment and generating, correcting, and ending an IP-based multimedia service session between user equipments or between a user equipment and an entity having an IP address.

As described above, a location service is one of the IP-based multimedia services. The location service means a service of calculating a location value of a target terminal periodically or on demand and providing location information including the calculated location value to an entity in a network. Examples of the method of calculating the location value of a target terminal can include a cell-ID method using an ID of a cell to which the terminal belongs, a method of measuring a period of time when a radio wave travels to a base station from a terminal and then calculating a location value of the terminal using a trigonometrical survey, and a method using a global positioning system (GPS).

The location service serves as a basis for providing users with an emergency location service as well as a variety of accessory services such as a traffic information service, a location information service, a weather information service, and a car navigation service. The emergency location service means a service of establishing an emergency call between a user equipment and an emergency center most suitable for the current location of the user equipment by the use of a system including sets of mobile communication networks or control nodes.

The emergency location service allows an emergency center to do an emergent rescue or the like necessary for the user by providing current location information of the user equipment to the emergency center for establishment of an emergency call. Accordingly, when a user requests for an emergency call with an emergency center at the time of a disaster or a traffic accident, the emergency location service should rapidly check a location of the user equipment to establish an emergency call between the user equipment and an emergency center most suitable for the checked location. Therefore, in the emergency location service based on the location of a user equipment, the rapid processing of an emergency call initiation request is very important in view of usefulness of accessory services.

However, various services provided from the known IMS do not disclose details of the emergency location service. In addition, since message processing procedures and transmission parameters between entities in the networks or systems for providing the emergency location service are different from each other depending on structures of the networks, there is a problem that the processing procedures of the emergency location service to be provided by the networks or systems should be prescribed different depending on the structures of the networks.

DISCLOSURE OF INVENTION Technical Problem

A technical goal of the invention is to provide a method and a system for providing an emergency location service using an IMS core.

Another technical goal of the invention is to provide a method and a system for providing an emergency location service using an IMS core regardless of structures of a network or system for providing a location service.

Technical Solution

According to an aspect of the invention, there is provided a method for providing an emergency location service using an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) core, the method comprising: receiving an emergency call initiating request message from a user equipment; transmitting a location service request message requesting for retrieving a location of the user equipment to a location retrieval subsystem in response to the emergency call initiating request message; receiving a location service response message including current location information of the user equipment, which is acquired through an access to the user equipment by the location retrieval subsystem having received the location service request message, from the location retrieval subsystem; and selecting an emergency center on the basis of the current location information and transmitting the emergency call initiating request message including the current location information to the selected emergency center.

According to another aspect of the invention, there is provided a method for providing an emergency location service, comprising: transmitting an emergency call initiating request message from a user equipment to an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) core; transmitting a first location service request message requesting for retrieving a location of the user equipment from the IMS core to a location retrieval subsystem; acquiring, by the location retrieval subsystem which accesses the user equipment, current location information of the user equipment, in response to the first location service request message; transmitting a first location service response message including the current location information from the location retrieval subsystem to the IMS core; transmitting the emergency call initiating request message including the current location information from the IMS core to the selected emergency center which is selected by the IMS core on the basis of the received current location information; and establishing an emergency call between the emergency center and the user equipment in response to the received emergency call initiating request message.

In the above-mentioned aspect, after the emergency call is established, the emergency center may transmit a second location service request message to the location retrieval subsystem and the location retrieval subsystem may acquire updated location information of the user equipment in response to the second location service request message and transmit a second location service response message including the updated location information to the emergency center.

According to another aspect of the invention, there is provided a method for providing an emergency location service using a user equipment, the method comprising: transmitting a session connection request message including emergency indicator information to a core network; accessing a location retrieval subsystem for acquiring current location information of the user equipment by measuring the current location of the user equipment in response to a request from the core network; and establishing an emergency call in response to a session connection request from an emergency center which is selected by the core network on the basis of the current location information acquired by the location retrieval subsystem.

According to another aspect of the invention, there is provided a user equipment supporting an emergency location service. And, the user equipment includes a processor which transmits a session connection request, message including emergency indicator information to a core network, accesses a location retrieval subsystem for acquiring current location information of the user equipment by measuring current location of the user equipment in response to a request from the core network, and performs a session connection to an emergency center in response to a session connection request from the emergency center which is selected by the core network on the basis of the current location information acquired by the location retrieval subsystem.

Advantageous Effects

In the method for providing an emergency location service according to the present invention, the IMS core having received an emergency call initiating request message communicates with the location retrieval subsystem performing the location retrieval function to acquire location information of the user equipment and selects an emergency center most suitable for the current location of the user equipment on the basis of the acquired location information to establish an emergency call between the user equipment and the emergency center. At this time, the location information of the user equipment can be acquired by the location retrieval subsystem to communicate with the user equipment. Therefore, according to the invention, it is possible to rapidly provide an emergency location service using the IMS core.

According to the invention, it is possible to acquire the location information of the user equipment using a system for providing a user plane based location service, for example, a location retrieval subsystem including an SLP and thus to provide an emergency location service using the location information. Accordingly, it is possible to efficiently provide an emergency location service using the IMS core regardless of characteristics or structures of networks for providing a location service.

BRIEF DESCRIPTION OF THE DRAWINGS

FIG. 1 is a block diagram illustrating a system for providing an emergency location service according to an embodiment of the present invention.

FIG. 2 is a block diagram illustrating a location retrieval subsystem including an SUPL location platform (SLP) as an example of a location retrieval subsystem shown in FIG. 1.

FIG. 3 is a flowchart of messages illustrating a first half of steps in a method for providing an emergency location service according to a first embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 4 is a flowchart of messages illustrating a second half in the method for providing an emergency location service according to the first embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 5 is a flowchart of messages illustrating a first half of steps in a method for providing an emergency location service according to a second embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 6 is a flowchart of messages illustrating a second half in the method for providing an emergency location service according to the second embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 7 is a flowchart of messages illustrating a first half of steps in a method for providing an emergency location service according to a third embodiment of the invention.

FIG. 8 is a flowchart of messages illustrating a second half in the method for providing an emergency location service according to the third embodiment of the invention.

Hereinafter, exemplary embodiments of the present invention will be described in detail with reference to the attached drawings. The exemplary embodiments described below are intended to exemplify a technical spirit of the present invention but not to define the scope of the present invention.

BEST MODE FOR CARRYING OUT THE INVENTION

FIG. 1 is a block diagram illustrating a system for providing an emergency location service according to an embodiment of the present invention. Referring to FIG. 1, the system includes a user equipment (UE) 100, an IP-connectivity access network (IP-CAN) 200, an IP multimedia subsystem (IMS) core 300, a location retrieval subsystem 400, and an emergency center (EC) 500.

The UE 100 is an entity which can communicate with the IMS core 300 or entities constituting the IMS core. The UE 100 has a specific ID and an IP address (P Addr). The ID of the UE 100 may be a public user ID such as an SIP URI (Uniform Resource Identifier) or a TEL URI. The UE 100 may have an emergency service ID which is specially promised for an emergency call.

The UE 100 can communicate with the location retrieval subsystem 400. The UE 100 may be an SUPL enabled terminal (SET) communicating with an SUPL location platform (SLP) which is an entity serving as a location retrieval function in, for example, a secure user plane network (SUPL) and examples thereof can include terminals such as a user equipment (UE) in a universal mobile telecommunication system (UMTS), a mobile station (MS) in a global system for mobile communication (GSM) or an inter standard-95 (IS-95), and a laptop computer or a personal digital assistance (PDA) having an SET function. The SET supports processes defined in the SUPL in interoperation with the SUPL network using a user plane bearer.

The IP-CAN 200 is a set of network entities and interfaces providing IP transport connectivity between the UE 100 and the IMS entities. That is, the IP-CAN 200 is an access network for routing an SIP signal so as to allow the UE 100 to communicate with the IMS core 300. The IP-CAN 200 may be a packet-based communication network such as a general packet radio service (GPRS).

The IMS core 300 is a set of control nodes providing a variety of multimedia services using the SIP and controlling an SIP-based call control in a mobile communication network environment. The IMS core includes a proxy call session control function (P-CSCF) 310, an emergency call session control function (E-CSCF) 320, and an emergency application server (E-AS) 330. The IMS core 300 may include a home subscriber server (HSS) (not shown).

The call session control function (CSCF) serves to register the UE 100 and route an SIP signal to a proper server and is generally classified into a P-CSCF 310, an S-CSCF (serving CSCF), and an I-CSCF (Interrogating-CSCF) depending on logical functions thereof. The P-CSCF 310 is a first contact point at the time of access to the IMS core 300. The S-CSCF serves to actually process a variety of sessions in the IMS network and can be classified into various entities depending on logical roles thereof. The E-CSCF 320 is an example of the S-CSCF and is an S-CSCF exclusively processing an emergency session.

The E-AS 330 serves to provide routing information on the emergency center 500 and to redirect the SIP signal. The E-AS 330 may be unified into the E-CSCF 320.

In the embodiments of the present invention, the E-CSCF 320 or the E-AS 330 serves as an intermediate medium for processing an IMS signal (a portion indicated by a narrow solid line in FIG. 1 is a signaling path for forwarding the IMS signal) and an LCS signal (a portion indicated by a thick solid line in FIG. 1 is a signaling path for forwarding the LCS signal), in addition to the above-mentioned roles. In this case, the E-CSCF 320 or the E-AS 330 which both of the IMS signal and the LCS signal pass through is a middle point for distinguishing the IMS signal and the LCS signal.

For example, the E-CSCF 320 takes charge of communication with the location retrieval subsystem 400 and the emergency center 500 in a first embodiment to be described later and the E-AS 330 takes charge of communication with the location retrieval subsystem 400 and the emergency center 500 in a second embodiment to be described later. In a third embodiment to be described later, the E-CSCF 320 takes charge of communication with the emergency center 500 and the E-AS 330 takes charge of communication with the location retrieval subsystem 330.

Accordingly, in the embodiments of the present invention, when it is s necessary to replace or upgrade nodes associated with the IMS signal and/or the LCS signal due to a change of the IMS signal and/or the LCS signal, only nodes for processing the IMS signal and/or nodes for processing the LCS signal may be replaced or upgraded. Since the IMS signal and the LCS signal for establishing an IMS emergency call are intersected at the E-CSCF 320 or the E-AS 330, the signaling paths of two signals can be clearly distinguished from each other or correlated to each other.

Referring to FIG. 1 again, the location retrieval subsystem 400 includes a functional entity acquiring location information by retrieving a location of the UE 100 in response to a location service request or a set of such entities. The location retrieval subsystem 400 exclusively processing an emergency location service request is an emergency location retrieval subsystem. A typical example of the location retrieval subsystem 400 is a location retrieval function (LRF).

The location retrieval subsystem 400 acquiring location information of the UE 100 may be an independent functional entity or may include a different kind of location server function (LSF) 410 acquiring the location information, a routing determination function (RDF) 420 providing routing information to a proper emergency center, and/or a gateway mobile location center (GMLC) 430 serving as an access node such as the emergency center 500.

Here, the location retrieval subsystem 400 may interact with an independent RDF 420 or may include a unified RDF 420. In the former, the independent RDF may be unified into the GMLC. The location retrieval subsystem 400 may interact with an independent GMLC 430 or may include a unified GMLC 430.

The LSF 410 is an entity serving to manage the location service and to actually retrieve the location of the UE 100. The location retrieval subsystem 400 may interact with the independent LSF 410 or may include a unified LSF so as to acquire the location information. One example of the LSF 410 is an SLP (SUPL Location Platform) shown in FIG. 2.

FIG. 2 is a block diagram illustrating a location retrieval subsystem 400 including the SLP as an example of the LSF 410: The location retrieval subsystem 400 includes an SLP 412 which is an SLP of a home network (H-SLP) or an SLP of a visit network (V-SLP), an E-SLP 414 processing an emergency location retrieval service, and SUPL network entities such as the GMLC 430. In this case, the SLP 412 and the E-SLP 414 may be unified into the RDF 420.

In this way, since the location retrieval subsystem 400 shown in FIG. 2 is only an example of the location retrieval subsystem 400 shown in FIG. 1, it is obvious to those skilled in the art that the embodiments of the invention to be described later with reference to the elements of FIG. 2 can be similarly applied to different kinds of location retrieval subsystems. Functions of the entities constituting the location retrieval subsystem 400 will be described in detail with reference to FIGS. 1 and 2.

As described above, the SUPL is a user plane based communication protocol which can basically provide a location service using a user plane. For example, the SUPL uses a user plane data bearer so as to forward location assistant information such as A-GPS (Assisted-Global Positioning System) and to transport a positioning technology relevant protocol between a user equipment and a network. The location service using the SUPL can be provided through an SUPL network including an SUPL agent, an SET as a user equipment which can support the SUPL service, and an SLP (SUPL location platform).

The SUPL agent means a service access point for accessing network resources so as to acquire the location information. The SET is an example of the UE 100 which can communicate with the SLP and the E-SLP. The SUPL agent may exist in the SET in some cases.

The SLP 412 is a network entity taking charge of the management of the SUPL service and the positioning of a target SET and may include an SUPL positioning center (SPC) 412 a and an SUPL location center (SLC) 412 b. The SPC 412 a is an entity for calculating an actual location of the SET and the SLC 412 b is an entity for performing functions of the SLP 412 such as a roaming function and a resource management function, except a location calculating function of the SPC 412 a. The operations of the SPC 412 a and the SLC 412 b may be slightly different from each other depending on a proxy mode or a non-proxy mode. These differences in the SUPL location service are well known and thus detailed description thereof will be omitted.

The SLP 412 may be an SLP of a home network or an SLP of a visit network. In FIG. 2, the former is indicated by the H-SLP and the later is indicated by the V-SLP. In the first, second, and third embodiments to be described later (FIGS. 3, 4, 5, 6, 7, and 8), the E-SLP and the V-SLP are disclosed as elements of the location retrieval subsystem and this is because it is assumed that the SET is currently in a roaming state. Accordingly, when the SET is in a non-roaming state, it is obvious to those skilled in the art that the V-SLP can be replaced with the H-SLP.

The E-SLP 414 is an SLP exclusively processing an emergency location service request. For example, when an emergency location service request is sent from the IMS core 300 or a location service request is sent from the emergency center 500, the E-SLP 414 accesses the SET 100 to calculate a location value of the SET 100 in accordance with a predetermined message transmission procedure. In this way, the E-SLP 414 may be said as an emergency session-specific SLP.

The E-SLP 414 may include an E-SPC 414 a and an E-SLC 414 b. The E-SPC 414 b performs a function of calculating an actual location of the SET 100 at the time of emergency session and the E-SLC 414 a performs the functions of the E-SLP 414, such as a resource management function, except the location calculating function of the E-SPC 414 b. The operations of the E-SLC 414 a and the E-SPC 414 b also can be different from each other depending on a proxy mode or a non-proxy mode.

The E-SLP 414 may exist in each network or may be independent of the networks. In the latter, one E-SLP 414 may cover a plurality of network areas. For example, the E-SLP 414 may individually cover areas of a home mobile communication network and areas of a visit mobile communication network, or one E-SLP 414 may cover the areas of the home mobile communication network and the areas of the visit mobile communication network. However, it is preferable that at least one E-SLP for processing emergency location service requests of the SETs belonging to the areas of the mobile communication networks exists. That is, at least one E-SLP for calculating a location of an SET should exist, to whichever network the SET belongs.

The E-SLP 414 may exist in the SLP 412. That is, the SLP 412 may have the function of the E-SLP 414. In this case, an additional E-SLP 414 may not exist and the function of the E-SPC 414 b and the function of E-SLC 414 a may be performed by the SPC 412 b and the SLC 412 a, respectively.

On the other hand, the E-SLP 414 may have a specific standardized address, for example, E-SLP IP Addr such as emergency.slp@lge.com. The E-SLP IP Addr may be previously stored in the SET 100 through provisioning, may be detected through a DNS query, or may be generated by the SET in accordance with a promised rule. In this case, the SET 100 can send the E-SLP IP Addr along with a message requesting for an emergency call to the IMS core 300.

Subsequently, the emergency center 500 is described with reference to FIG. 1.

The emergency center 500 receives the location information of the UE 100 from the IMS core 300, more specifically, the E-CSCF 320 or the E-AS 330 and performs a function of taking care of the emergency situtation of the user. The emergency center 500 may be a physical location for receiving an emergency call from the user, such as a public safety answering point (PSAP). That is, the emergency center 500 may be a server of a police station, a fire station, an emergency center of a hospital, or the like. The emergency center 500 may be independent of the networks. For example, one emergency center 500 may cover a plurality of network areas, a plurality of emergency center 500 may exist in one network, or one emergency center 500 may exist in one network area.

The emergency center 500 may be connected to an IMS network, a public switched telephone network (PSTN), a circuit switched domain (CS domain), a packet switched domain (PS domain), or any other packet network. In addition, for example, when it is necessary to updated the location of the UE 100, the emergency center 500 may request the location retrieval subsystem 400 to retrieve an updated location of the UE 100.

On the other hand, the communications among the UE 100, the IMS core 300, the location retrieval subsystem 400, and the emergency center 500 can be performed by messages using two kids of signals such as the IMS signal and the LCS signal. The LCS signal is transmitted (indicated by a thick solid line) between the UE 100 and the location retrieval subsystem 400, between the location retrieval subsystem 400 and the IMS core 300, and between the location retrieval subsystem 400 and the emergency center 500. The IMS signal is transmitted (indicated by a narrow solid line) among the UE 100—the IP-CAN 200—the IMS core 300 the emergency center 500. The IMS signal may be transmitted between the IMS core 300 and the location retrieval subsystem 400. The IMS signal may employ the SIP and the LCS signal may employ a roaming location protocol (RLP), a mobile location protocol (MLP), or the SIP. However, this is not restricted, but a variety of protocols may be used depending on the environments, in addition to the SIP, the RLP, and the MLP.

Hitherto, the configuration of the system for providing an emergency location service according to an exemplary embodiment of the present invention is described. Hereinafter, the method for providing an emergency location service according to an embodiment of the invention will be described in detail on the basis of the above-mentioned system configuration.

In the following embodiments, it is assumed that the location retrieval subsystem 400 shown in FIG. 2 including the SLP 412 and the E-SLP 414 is used as an example of the location retrieval subsystem shown in FIG. 1. However, this is only an example and it is obvious to those skilled in the art that this can be similarly applied to another network or another location retrieval subsystem for performing a location retrieval function. That is, in the following embodiments, the SLP and the E-SLP take charge of the location retrieval function of the SET, but as described above, the SLP, the E-SLP, and the SET are only examples of the location retrieval subsystem, the emergency location retrieval subsystem, and the user equipment, respectively.

Hereinafter, the method for providing an emergency location service according to an embodiment of the invention will be described with reference to detailed elements of the IMS core 300 and the location retrieval subsystem 400, such as the E-CSCF, the E-AS, and the E-SLP. Specific steps to be performed by or to the E-CSCF, the E-AS, and the E-SLP are described as steps performed by a representative entity constituting the IMS core or the location retrieval subsystem. It is obvious to those skilled in the art that the steps can be assumed as steps performed to or by the IMS core or the location retrieval subsystem. For example, transmission of messages between the E-CSCF and the location retrieval subsystem or the emergency center can be assumed as transmission of the messages between the IMS core and the location retrieval subsystem or the emergency center.

First Embodiment

FIGS. 3 and 4 are flowcharts of messages illustrating first and second halves of steps in the method for providing an emergency location service according to a first embodiment of the invention, where an intermediate medium for processing the IMS signal and the LCS signal is the E-CSCF. As shown in FIGS. 3 and 4, location information of the SET including a location value of the SET is classified into three kinds of initial location information, mid-call (or current) location information, and updated location information.

First, the initial location information includes an initial location value (loc_ini) acquired through interoperation of the SET with the IP-CAN and is, for example, information included in an emergency call initiating request message transmitted to the IMS core from the user equipment. The loc_ini included in the initial location information may include a cell IP of the IP-CAN or an access point ID in addition to a physical location value. The loc_ini may be acquired by another communication network or another system or entity performing the location retrieval function, such as a location retrieval subsystem. This case is a case where it is not possible to calculate the initial location value of the SET through the interoperation with the IP-CAN or where an obstacle occurs in calculating the initial location value.

The mid-call location information is location information of the SET including the current location value or the middle location value (loc_mid) acquired by the location retrieval subsystem in response to the emergency service request from the IMS core and the mid-call location information may be included in the emergency call initiating request message transmitted to the emergency center from the E-CSCF. The loc_mid is calculated when the loc_ini included in the initial location information is not sufficient to select an accurate emergency center, when a help from an entity providing the routing information is necessary for selecting an emergency center, or when it is necessary to confirm the loc_ini. Accordingly, when the loc_ini is sufficient to select an accurate emergency center, the loc_mid may not be acquired. In this case, the loc_ini is included in the mid-call location information.

The updated location information is location information of the SET including an updated location value (loc_upd) of the SET after an emergency call is established. The loc_upd is acquired by transmitting a predetermined message between the E-SLP of the location retrieval subsystem and the SET when the location service request is set from an emergency center as needed or periodically. The updated location information including the loc_upd is transmitted to the emergency center from the E-SLP through the GMLC or directly.

An emergency call processing procedure according to this embodiment will be described in detail with reference to FIGS. 3 and 4. The procedure shown in FIG. 4 is successive to the procedure shown in FIG. 3 and the procedures are arbitrarily divided from the emergency call processing procedure according to this embodiment for the purpose of convenient preparation of the drawings.

As described in detail later, the emergency call processing procedure according to this embodiment shown in FIGS. 3 and 4 includes approximately three procedures. The first procedure is a registration procedure for registering a user equipment in the IMS core, the second procedure is an emergency call establishing procedure for establishing an emergency call between the user equipment and the emergency center, and the third procedure is a location update procedure for acquiring updated location information of the user equipment in response to a request from the emergency center. The second procedure is essential for the method for providing an emergency location service according to this embodiment and the first procedure and the third procedure may be performed as needed or depending on situations. When the initial location information is sufficient to select a proper emergency center, the process of acquiring the mid-call location information may be omitted from the emergency call establishing procedure.

First, the SET registration procedure (S601 to S606) as the first procedure will be described.

Referring to FIG. 3, when the SET does not set a data connection to any network before requesting for an emergency call, the SET requests a data connection to the IP-CAN and performs a data connection setup (S601). As described above, the IP-CAN is an access network having IP-connectivity as a packet switched network. The network may be 3GPP or 3GPP2 network, and so on.

At this time, the SET acquires the E-SLP IP Addr through a DNS query by the use of the known ID of the E-SLP. The E-SLP IP Addr may have a format of emergency.slp@lge.com. The SET acquires a P-CSCF IP Addr by performing a predetermined P-CSCF discovery procedure such as a DNS query. The acquired P-CSCF IP Addr is used to transmit a registration request message in the subsequent procedure.

When the data connection setup is performed through the IP-CAN, the SET transmits a registration request message such as an SIP REGISTER message for registering the SET to the P-CSCF of the IMS core (S602). The registration request message includes emergency indicating information (Emergency Indi), the ID of the SET, and the SET IP Addr. The registration request message may include an ID indicating a network to which the SET belongs, SET capability information (SET Capa), the loc_ini, and the E-SLP IP Addr.

The SET ID may be a public user ID such as SIP URI or TEL URI. When there are a mobile station identifier (MSID) which is an ID given by a mobile station integrated system digital network (MSISDN) and an emergency service ID promised particularly for an emergency call, the emergency service ID may be additionally transmitted along with the SET ID in step S602. The SET IP Addr is means for accessing the SET through the IP-CAN.

The Emergency Indi is information indicating that the relevant session is a message associated with an emergency call. The Emergency Indi may be inserted by adding a predetermined field of bits to a normal registration request message or designating an extra field not used. At this time, the Emergency Indi inserted into the field can be inserted in an active or not-active format, whether the relevant message is associated with an emergency call or not. For example, in case of an emergency location service, an active value (“Active” or “1” or “True”) is inserted into the field and in case of a commercial location service, an not-active value (“Not-Active” or “0” or “False”) is inserted into the field. In this way, it can be indicated whether the relevant SIP message is a message associated with an emergency call or a general service call.

The Emergency Indi may be inserted in various formats indicating an emergency call, such as Emergency_event. In some cases, it may be indicated whether the relevant SIP message is a message associated with an emergency call or a general service call, by inserting a predetermined value into the field in case of an emergency location service and leaving the field empty in case of a commercial location service.

In the above-mentioned cases, priority higher than a registration request message including information indicating another commercial service may be given to the registration request message including the Emergency Indi.

The ID indicating a network to which the SET belongs may be an IP-CAN ID or an HPLMN ID. The HPLMN ID can help the E-CSCF to find a home network in a home network registration step (S604) as the subsequent step.

The SET Capa is information indicating capability of the SET such as a location measuring method supported by the user equipment and/or protocol information used for the location measuring method. Here, the location measuring method may include a terminal assist A-GPS method or a terminal based A-GPS method (Cell ID method). The protocol used for the measurement of a location may include a radio resource location service protocol of the GPRS, a radio resource control protocol of wideband code division multiple access (WCDMA), or TIA-801 of CDMA.

In addition, when there is the information (Emergency Capa) indicating the capability of the SET associated with the emergency call, the information may be transmitted together. The Emergency Capa may be information indicating whether a user equipment supports an emergency call in an existing control plane or supports an emergency call in a user plane, but is not limited to the information. The Emergency Capa may be an example of the SET Capa.

The Emergency Capa may be expressed in various forms in the same way as expressing the emergency indicating information. For example, when a user equipment supports the emergency call in the control plane, “0” can be used to express it and when the user equipment supports the IMS emergency call in the user plane, “1” can be used to express it.

When the registration request message is forwarded to the P-CSCF, the P-CSCF determines whether the relevant message is associated with an emergency call and forwards the received registration request message such as an SIP REGISTER message to the E-CSCF when the message is associated with an emergency call (S603).

The E-CSCF having received the SIP REGISTER message forwards the SIP REGISTER message to the HPLMN as needed so as to perform HPLMN registration (S604). In some operators or nations, when authentication or registration of a home network should be performed in spite of an emergency call in accordance with national requirements or when the emergency call should be notified to the home network, this step is performed to notify the home network of the current situation of the user equipment. Accordingly, this step is an arbitrary process which is performed as needed.

When the SET is registered, the E-CSCF transmits a registration acknowledgement message such as an SIP 200 OK message to the P-CSCF (S605). The registration acknowledgement message may be a message transmitted to the E-CSCF from the home network in step S604 or a message generated by the E-CSCF.

Subsequently, the P-CSCF transmits the received registration acknowledgement message to the SET (S606).

In this way, when the registration acknowledgement message is forwarded from the P-CSCF to the SET, the SET registration procedure as the first procedure is ended. The SET registration procedure can be obviously omitted when the SET is already registered.

After the registration of the SET, the SET acquires its own loc_ini through interoperation with the IP-CAN (S607). Step S607 can be omitted since the step S607 is performed as needed. And, as described above, when the SET cannot acquire the loc_ini through interoperation with the IP-CAN, the SET may acquire the loc_ini through interoperation with the location retrieval subsystem.

Next, the emergency call establishing procedure as the second procedure is performed (S608 to S628). The emergency call establishing procedure is started by transmitting an emergency call request message from the SET to the IMS core and is ended by establishing an emergency call between the SET and an emergency center. The emergency call establishing procedure is now described in detail with reference to FIGS. 3 and 4.

Referring to FIG. 3, the SET transmits the emergency call initiating request message to the P-CSCF (S608). The emergency call initiating request message may have various formats and may be a session connection request message including the Emergency Indi. The session connection request message may be an SIP Invite message.

The emergency call initiating request message includes information on the network (IP-CAN ID) to which the SET belongs together with the SET ID and the location ID (lid). And, the emergency call initiating request message may include SET IP Addr, loc_ini, SET Capa, E-SLP IP Addr, and initial session description protocol offer (Initial SDP Offer).

According to this embodiment, the SET is connected to the IMS core through the IP-CAN. Accordingly, the information on the network may include an ID of the IP-CAN to which the SET is currently connected (IP-CAN ID) and lid indicating a location of the connection point in the IP-CAN.

The Initial SDP Offer indicates media information provided by the user equipment for one or more multimedia sessions. The media information is required for establishment of an emergency call when a multimedia session is finally opened between the user equipment and the emergency center.

The P-CSCF having received the emergency call initiating request message forwards the message to the E-CSCF (S609). The SIP INVITE message forwarded to the E-CSCF preferably includes all the information transmitted from the SET and preferably includes the SET IP Addr. When the information does not include the SET IP Addr, the P-CSCF extracts the SET IP Addr through interoperation with the IP-CAN or the HSS, adds the extracted SET IP Addr to the emergency call initiating request message, and then transmits the message to the E-CSSF.

Next, the procedure for acquiring, by the location retrieval subsystem to communicate with the SET, the mid-call location information (loc_mid) of the SET (S610 to S615) is performed.

First, the E-CSCF transmits a location service (LCS) request message for requesting for retrieving a location of the SET to the E-SLP of the location retrieval subsystem (S610). In this case, the E-CSCF uses the E-SLP IP Addr already known or included in the transmitted emergency call initiating request message or finds the E-SLP IP Addr when it is not known. The LCS request message includes the SET ID and the IP-CAN ID and may transmit other information included in the received emergency call initiating request message together as needed.

The LCS request message may be a message using the SIP or another protocol. For example, when the E-SLP supports the IMS signal, the SIP INVITE message may be transmitted as the LCS request message. However, when the E-SLP does not support the IMS signal or when it is required that the IMS signal and the LCS signal should be distinguished each other, the E-CSCF may convert the SIP INVITE message into a message using MLP or RLP and then transmit the converted message. For example, the E-CSCF may generate an emergency location immediate request (MLP EME_LIR) message or an emergency roaming location immediate request (ERLIR) message shown in Table 1 from the SIP INVITE message and then transmit the generated MLP EME_LIR message or the RLP ERLIR message to the E-SLP.

TABLE 1
<!ELEMENT eme_lir ((msids | (msid, gsm_net_param, trans_id?,
esrd?, esrk?)+), eqop?, geo_info?, loc_type? ,
pushaddr? %extension.param;)>

The E-SLP may transmit the received location service request message to another location retrieval function such as the V-SLP as needed. In this case, the message transmitted to the V-SLP may be the SIP INVITE message, the MLP EME_LIR message or RLP ERLIR message generated from the SIP INVITE message, or MLP EME_LIR message or the RLP ERLIR message including the SIP INVITE message.

The procedure of transmitting the location service request message to the V-SLP can be performed, for example, when the E-SLP determines using the loc_ini of the SET including in the LCS request message that another SLP is closer to the SET than the E-SLP. This is because another SLP closer to the SET than the E-SLP can transmit more precise assistant data necessary for acquiring the loc_mid of the SET. However, even when it is determined that the E-SLP is closer to the SET or when another SLP is closer to the SET, the procedure can be arbitrarily omitted.

Subsequently, the E-SLP or the V-SLP performs a predetermined location retrieval procedure such as an SUPL procedure (S611 to S615) to the SET. In the SUPL procedure, the E-SLP or the V-SLP exchanges a message with the SET through the IMS core or directly and acquires the loc_mid which is a current location value of the SET. Hereinafter, this procedure is described in more detail.

In the SUPL procedure, first, the V-SLP transmits via the E-SLP or the E-SLP directly transmits a location retrieval start message for starting the location retrieval procedure, such as an SUPL INIT message, to the SET (S611). The location retrieval start message includes an address of an entity taking charge of the SUPL procedure, such as E-SLP Addr/E-SPC Addr or V-SLP AddrN-SPC Addr and may further includes information indicating whether the entity taking charge of the SUPL procedure is the V-SLP or the E-SLP and information indicating the proxy mode or the non-proxy mode, as needed. The location retrieval start message can be transmitted using an SIP PUSH mechanism.

The location retrieval start message may be transmitted independently or may be included in various types of messages. In the latter, the location retrieval start message may be included in the SIP message or the RLP message. The location retrieval start message may be included in the SIP Immediate message among the SIP messages or may be included in an SIP response message (such as an SIP 1xx response message). An additional SIP message for the location retrieval start using the SUPL network may be newly defined and transmitted. In some embodiments, the location retrieval start message may be included in an RLP standard SUPL roaming location immediate request (RLP SSRLIR) message among the RLP messages.

When transmitting the location retrieval start message to the SET, the V-SLP or the E-SLP may transmit the location retrieval start message through the E-CSCF. In this case, the E-CSCF forwards all the messages including the location retrieval start message to the P-CSCF and the P-CSCF transmits the messages to the SET.

Hitherto, the procedure for requesting for the start of the emergency call and the procedure for requesting for the start of the location retrieval procedure have been described using the emergency call initiating request message and/or the immediate message, and the location retrieval start message. In some embodiments, the procedures may be performed using the SIP INVITE message, the SIP 100 trying message, and the PRACK message. In this case, after the SIP INVITE message is forwarded to the V-SLP or the E-SLP from the SET, the SIP 100 trying message is transmitted as the acknowledgement message for the location retrieval and the SUPL INIT message is included in the SIP 100 trying message. Thereafter, a procedure in which the SET checks the SLP using the PRACK may be further provided.

Subsequently, the SET having received the location retrieval start message transmits a positioning start message for acquiring its own location value, such as an SUPL POS INIT message, to the E-SLP (S612). The E-SLP can forward the positioning start message to the V-SLP as needed. At this time, when the E-SLP forwards a message converted into the RLP message to the V-SLP in step S610, the E-SLP can convert the positioning start message into the RLP message and forward the converted RLP message to the V-SLP. When address information of the entity taking charge of the location retrieval is included in the location retrieval start message received by the SET, the SET may transmit the positioning start message directly to the E-SLP, the E-SPC, the V-SLP, or the V-SPC.

The positioning start message, for example, the SUPL POS INIT message includes the session ID (session-id), the location ID (lid), and the SET.Capa. The session-id is identifier information indicating an SUPL session. The lid can indicate an ID of a cell to which the SET currently belongs, that is, an ID of a base station. By using the lid, it is possible to acquire the current location of the SET independently. The SET Capa includes information on a location retrieval method supported by the SET or a protocol usable for the location retrieval.

The E-SLP, the E-SPC, the V-SLP, or the V-SPC successively exchanges the positioning message, such as the SUPL POS message, as a message for acquiring the location value of the SET, such as the loc_mid, with the SET and retrieves the actual location of the SET (S613). In the step of retrieving the location of the SET, the location retrieval method determined on the basis of the received SET Capa information and the relevant protocol, such as RRLP, RRC, or TIA-801, can be used. At this time, when the E-SLP forwards the location service request message to the V-SLP using the RLP message in step S610, the E-SLP and the SET exchange the positioning message using the SIP and the E-SLP and the V-SLP exchange the positioning message using the RLP message. As a result, E-SLP, the E-SPC, the V-SLP, or the V-SPC acquires the loc_mid which is the accurate location value of the SET.

Subsequently, when the location value of the SET is acquired, the V-SLP transmits through the E-SLP or the E-SLP transmits directly a location retrieval end message such as an SUPL END message indicating that the location retrieval procedure is ended to the SET (S614). In this case, the V-SLP can transmit the location retrieval end message to the E-SLP using the RLP message.

When the accurate location value of the SET is acquired, the V-SLP transmits through the E-SLP or the E-SLP transmits directly a location service response message including the loc_mid to the E-CSCF (S615). The location service response message may be an LCS response message.

When the loc_ini which is the initial location value of the SET included in the emergency call initiating request message transmitted to the E-CSCF in step S609 is accurate enough to select an emergency center, the location retrieval procedure of the SET can be omitted. However, as described above, when the loc_ini is not included in the emergency call initiating request message, when the loc_ini is not sufficient to select an emergency center, or when it is intended to confirm the loc_ini, the location retrieval procedure may not be omitted.

Subsequently, the other procedure of the emergency call establishing procedure will be described with reference to FIG. 4. The IMS core having acquired the accurate location value (loc_ini or loc_mid) of the SET performs a procedure for acquiring routing information of the emergency center (S616 to S619).

In order to acquire the routing information, the E-CSCF having received the location service response message including the loc_mid transmits the emergency call initiating request message, for example, the SIP INVITE message, to the E-AS (S616). At this time, the emergency call initiating request message transmitted to the E-AS include the location information of the SET, for example, the loc_mid. All the other information included in the received SIP INVITE message may further included therein.

Then, the E-AS selects an emergency center on the basis of the loc_mid included in the received SIP INVITE message (S617).

Subsequently, the E-AS transmits a transmission message including information of the selected emergency center to the E-CSCF (S618). The transmission message may be an SIP 3xx redirection message, but is not limited to it and may be various types of messages such as an SIP method.

In step S618, the E-AS can transmit information for identifying the selected emergency center to the E-CSCF together with the transmission message, as needed. The information for identifying an emergency center may be ESRD (Emergency Service Routing Digits), ESRK (Emergency Service Routing Key), ESRN (Emergency Service Routing Number), and/or ESQK (Emergency Service Query Key) in case of an emergency location service in North America. In this case, the information for identifying an emergency center, such as the ESRD, the ESRK, the ESRN, and the ESQK can be acquired by the E-AS using its own database in step S617 and at least one or more information pieces or all the information is transmitted to the E-CSCF in step S618.

The ESRD and the ESRK are a kind of special number associated with an emergency call used only in North America. The ESRD is a number for identifying a base station or a sector closest to the current user equipment and the ESRK is a number for identifying an emergency call provider for providing the current emergency call by combining various base stations or sectors. The ESRN and the ESQK are information used by emergency centers for an emergency call in the existing CS networks. The ESRN and the ESQK are values used in North America for routing an emergency call to an emergency center supporting the existing PSTN network in networks supporting IPs. The ESRN and the ESQK are values obtained by replacing the existing values of the ESRD and the ESRK for interoperation between the IP network and the PSTN network.

The ESRN and the ESQK are special numbers associated with an emergency call used only in North America. The ESRN is a number used to route an emergency call to a proper gateway so as to forward the emergency call initiating request message to an emergency center based on the circuit switched network. The ESQK, which is information used to identify a specific emergency call, is used as a key for acquiring location information associated with the specific emergency call and callback information by the location retrieval subsystem, and is used when the emergency center inquires location information to the location retrieval subsystem.

The E-AS forwards information for identifying an emergency center, such as the ESRD, the ESRK, the ESRN, and the ESQK, to the E-CSCF using proper means. For example, the E-AS can forward the information such as the ESQK and the like using the received emergency call initiating request message. In this case, since the E-AS is used like an SIP proxy server, the subsequent step S619 of forwarding an acknowledgement message to the E-AS from the E-CSCF can be omitted.

Subsequently, the E-CSCF having received the transmission message including the information of the emergency center transmits the acknowledgement message to the E-AS (S619). The acknowledgement message may be, for example, an ACK message.

The E-CSCF acquires the routing information on the emergency center through the above-mentioned procedure (S616 to S619).

The E-CSCF having acquired the routing information transmits the emergency call initiating request message to the emergency center selected on the basis of the received information of identifying an emergency center for the purpose of establishing an emergency call (S620). At this time, the emergency call initiating request message include the SET ID. The information included in the received emergency call initiating request message, for example, the SET Capa, the loc_mid, the initial SDP offer, and the Emergency Indi may be further included therein.

Subsequently, a message transmission channel is opened between the emergency center and the SET in accordance with a normal communication procedure (S621 to S628). The message transmission channel may be a real-time transport protocol channel (RTP channel). The specific procedure for opening the message transmission channel is not particularly limited.

First, the emergency center having received the SIP INVITE message forwards a call message to the IMS core, for example, the E-CSCF (S621). The call message may be an SIP 180 ringing message. The E-CSCF forwards the call message to the P-CSCF (S622) and the P-CSCF transmits the call message to the SET (S623).

In some embodiments, the call message may be forwarded to the SET through the E-AS. In this case, as described in step S619, the E-AS is used as the SIP proxy server. In this way, when the E-AS is used as the SIP proxy server, a procedure of forwarding and responding the call message between the E-CSCF and the E-AS is further provided before forwarding the call message from the E-CSCF to the P-CSCF.

The emergency center transmits an acknowledgement message to the emergency call initiating request message to the E-CSCF (S624). The acknowledgement message may be an SIP 200 OK message. The emergency center may transmit an SDP offer message which can be supported by the emergency center, for example, SDP offer 2 message, together with the acknowledgement message.

The E-CSCF forwards the acknowledgement message including the SDP offer message to the P-CSCF (S625) and the P-CSCF transmits the messages to the SET (S626). In this case, similarly to the transmission of the call message, a procedure of forwarding and responding the acknowledgement message between the E-CSCF and the E-AS is further provided before forwarding the acknowledgement message from the E-CSCF to the P-CSCF.

The SET having received the call message transmits an acknowledgement message to the emergency center (S627). The acknowledgement message may be an SIP ACK message.

The steps S621 to S627 for opening the transmission channel are examples of a connection procedure for connecting the SET to the emergency center and can be modified variously depending on session connecting methods.

After the call message and the acknowledgement message are exchanged between the SET and the emergency center, the message transmission channel is opened between the SET and the emergency center and the emergency call is established between the SET and the emergency center through the message transmission channel (S628). As described above, the message transmission channel may be an RTP channel. The communication between the SET and the emergency center can be performed using a multimedia session included in both the initial SDP offer message of the SET and the SDP offer message of the emergency center, that is, a multimedia session supported by the SET and the emergency center.

After the emergency call is established between the SET and the emergency center, the emergency center updates the location information of the SET as needed or periodically. Now, a procedure of updating the location information of the SET will be described with reference to FIG. 4.

First, the emergency center transmits a location service request message, which is a message requesting for acquiring an updated location value (loc_upd) of the SET, to the GMLC of the location retrieval subsystem (S629). The location service request message may be an LCS request message. In this case, the location service request message may be a message using an MLP or a protocol specified between the emergency center and the GMLC, for example, a message using J-STD-036.

The GMLC forwards the location service request message to the E-SLP (S630). The E-SLP may forward the message to the V-SLP. In this case, the location service request message may be a message using the MLP or a message using the RLP.

When the emergency center knows the E-SLP Addr or the V-SLP Addr or when the GMLC is unified into the E-SLP or the V-SLP, the emergency center can transmit the location service request message directly to the E-SLP or the V-SLP. In this case, the step of transmitting the location service request message to the GMLC (S629) can be omitted.

In the above-mentioned steps S629 and S630, the emergency center can select a location retrieval subsystem (E-SLP) using the information received in step S620, for example, the information such as the ESQK.

Subsequently, a location retrieval procedure for acquiring the updated location value of the SET, that is, the loc_upd, is performed (S631 to S634). The location retrieval procedure may be an SUPL procedure as described above, but is not limited to it. In the location retrieval procedure, the E-SLP or the V-SLP calculates and acquires the loc_upd by exchanging predetermined messages with the SET. The location retrieval procedure (S631 to S634) including the step of acquiring the loc_upd is similar to steps S611 to S614 and thus detailed description thereof will be omitted.

The E-SLP having acquired the loc_upd through the location retrieval procedure forwards a location service response message including the loc_upd to the GMLC (S635). The location service response message may be an LCS response message. In this case, the location service response message may be a message using an MLP or a message using an RLP.

The GMLC transmits the received location service response message to the emergency center (S636). Of course, the location service response message includes the loc_upd. In this case, the location service response message may be a message using the MLP or a protocol specified between the emergency center and the GMLS, for example, a message using J-STD-036.

In this way, when the location service response message including the loc_upd is transmitted to the emergency center, the procedure of acquiring the updated location information which is the third procedure of the method for providing emergency location service according to this embodiment is finished.

Thereafter, when it is intended to end the established emergency call, the SET or the emergency center transmits a call release message to the opposite party (S637). The call release message may be an SIP BYE message. At this time, when the call release message is a message using the SIP, the emergency center or the user equipment having received the call release message transmits an acknowledgement message using the SIP, for example, the SIP 200 OK message, to the opposite party through all the nodes through which the emergency call initiating request message is forwarded. In this way, by exchanging the call release message and the acknowledgement message, the emergency call established between the SET and the emergency center is released.

Mode for the Invention Second Embodiment

Next, a method for providing an emergency location service according to a second embodiment of the invention will be described.

FIGS. 5 and 6 are flowcharts of messages illustrating a procedure of providing an emergency location service according to the second embodiment of the invention. The second embodiment is different from the first embodiment in which the intermediate medium is the E-CSCF, in that the intermediate medium processing the IMS signal and the LCS signal is the E-AS. That is, in the second embodiment, an entity taking charge of the exchange of messages between the IMS core and the location retrieval subsystem is the E-AS. As shown in FIGS. 5 and 6, the location information of the SET including the location value of the SET is classified into the initial location information, the mid-call location information, and the updated location information.

Similarly to the first embodiment, the initial location information includes an initial location value (loc_ini) acquired through interoperation of the SET with the IP-CAN and is information included in a registration request message transmitted to the IP-CAN or an emergency call initiating request message transmitted to the IMS core.

The mid-call location information is location information of the SET included in the emergency call initiating request message transmitted to an emergency center from the E-AS. The mid-call location information includes the middle location value (loc_mid) and the loc_mid is a location value of the SET acquired through interoperation of the location retrieval subsystem with the SET. In the second embodiment, the procedure of acquiring the loc_mid is started by the E-AS to request the E-SLP for the location service and the mid-call location information including the loc_mid is transmitted to the emergency center from the E-AS.

Finally, similarly to the first embodiment, the updated location information is location information of the SET including an updated location value (loc_upd) of the SET after an emergency call is established.

The emergency call processing procedure according to this embodiment includes three procedures of a registration procedure, an emergency call establishing procedure, and a location updating procedure. Now, differences of the second embodiment from the first embodiment will be mainly described with reference to FIGS. 5 and 6.

First, the registration procedure is described.

Referring to FIG. 5, when the SET does not currently set a data connection to any network, the SET requests the IP-CAN for a data connection and performs a data connection setup (S701). When the data connection setup is performed with the IP-CAN, the SET transmits a registration request message for registering the SET, for example, the SIP REGISTER message, to the P-CSCF of the IMS core along with other information (S702). The other information includes SET ID, IP-CAN ID, SET IP Addr, and Emergency Indi. The other information may further include HPLMN ID, SET Capa, and E-SLP IP Addr. Subsequently, the P-CSCF forwards the received registration request message and all the information included therein to the E-CSCF (S703).

Next, the E-CSCF may forward the received registration request message to the HPLMN so as to perform the HPLMN registration procedure of the SET (S704).

After the SET is registered in step S704, the E-CSCF transmits an acknowledgement message, for example, an SIP 200 OK message, to the P-CSCF (S705) and the P-CSCF forwards the received acknowledgement message to the SET (S706).

Next, similarly to the first embodiment, the SET may perform a step of acquiring the loc_ini before starting the emergency call establishing procedure (S707). In the step of acquiring the loc_ini, the SET acquires its own loc_ini through interoperation with the IP-CAN or interoperation with the SUPL network.

Next, the emergency call establishing procedure (S708 to S725) are performed.

In the emergency call establishing procedure, first, the SET transmits the emergency call initiating request message including the Emergency Indi to the P-CSCF (S708). The emergency call initiating request message includes SET ID, IP-CAN ID, lid, and loc_ini. The emergency call initiating request message may further include SET IP Addr, SET Capa, E-SLP IP Addr, and initial SDP Offer. The P-CSCF forwards the emergency call initiating request message to the E-CSCF together with all the information including the SET IP Addr (S709).

The E-CSCF forwards the emergency call initiating request message to the E-AS together with all the information included therein (S710). In this embodiment, since the intermediate medium processing the SIP signal and the LCS signal is the E-AS, such a procedure is added after the step S709. Accordingly, in the subsequent step, the E-AS takes charge of the communication between the IMS core and the location retrieval subsystem.

Subsequently, the E-AS transmits the location service request message to the E-SLP (S711). At this time, the E-AS transmits the SET ID, the IP-CAN ID, and the SET IP Addr together with the location service request message. Other information included in the emergency call initiating request message may be transmitted together. The location service request message may be a message using an SIP or a message using another protocol, for example, a message using an MLP or an RLP. The E-SLP may transmit the received location service request message to another location retrieval function, for example, the V-SLP as needed.

Subsequently, the E-SLP or the V-SLP interoperates with the SET to perform a predetermined location retrieval procedure, for example, an SUPL procedure, thereby acquiring the loc_mid (S712 to S715). In the SUPL procedure, the E-SLP or the V-SLP exchanges messages with the SET through the IMS core or directly to acquire the mid-call location information including the loc_mid. Since the SUPL procedure (S712 to S715) are similar to the steps S611 to S614 of the first embodiment, the detailed description thereof will be omitted. Next, the V-SLP or the E-SLP acquiring the loc_mid of the SET transmits a location service response message including the loc_mid, for example, an LCS response message, to the E-AS (S716).

Then, the other steps of the emergency call establishing procedure according to the second embodiment will be described with reference to FIG. 6.

Referring to FIG. 6, the E-AS selects an emergency center on the basis of the loc_mid (S717). The E-AS may acquire information for identifying the selected emergency center. For example, in case of an emergency location service in North America, the information for identifying an emergency center may be an ESRD, an ESRK, an ESRN, and an ESQK.

The E-AS transmits the emergency call initiating request message to the selected emergency center (S718). The emergency call initiating request message includes the SET ID, the SET Capa, and the loc_mid. The emergency call initiating request message may further include the initial SDP offer and the Emergency Indi.

Subsequently, a procedure (S719 to S728) of opening a message transmission channel, for example, an RTP channel, between the emergency center having received the emergency call initiating request message and the SET is performed. The specific steps of opening the message transmission channel is almost similar to steps S621 to S628 of the first embodiment. However, the second embodiment is different from the first embodiment, in that the call message and the acknowledgement message are forwarded through the E-AS. In this way, when the call message and the acknowledgement message are exchanged between the SET and the emergency center and the message transmission channel is opened, an emergency call is established between the SET and the emergency center (S719 to S728).

Subsequently, similarly to the first embodiment, steps of updating the location information of the SET, that is, a location updating procedure (S729 to S736), are performed. Since the steps of updating the location information can be performed in the same order as the first embodiment, detailed description thereof will be omitted.

Thereafter, the SET or the emergency center transmits an end message, for example, an SIP BYE message, to the opposite party to release the established emergency call (S737).

Third Embodiment

Next, a method for providing an emergency location service according to a third embodiment of the invention will be described.

FIGS. 7 and 8 are flowcharts of messages illustrating a procedure of providing an emergency location service according to the third embodiment of the invention. The third embodiment is equal to the second embodiment, in that the intermediate medium processing the IMS signal and the LCS signal is the E-AS. However, the third embodiment is different from the second embodiment but equal to the first embodiment, in that an entity of the IMS core communicating with an emergency center is the E-CSCF. As shown in FIGS. 7 and 8, the location information of the SET including the location value of the SET is classified into the initial location information, the mid-call location information, and the updated location information.

Similarly to the first and second embodiments, the initial location information includes an initial location value (loc_ini) acquired through interoperation of the SET with the IP-CAN and is information included in a registration request message transmitted to the IP-CAN or an emergency call initiating request message transmitted to the IMS core.

The mid-call location information is location information of the SET included in the emergency call initiating request message transmitted to an emergency center from the E-CSCF. The mid-call location information includes the middle location value (loc_mid) and the loc_mid is a location value of the SET acquired through interoperation of the location retrieval subsystem with the SET. In the second embodiment, the procedure of acquiring the loc_mid is started by the E-AS to request the E-SLP for the location service and the mid-call location information including the loc_mid is transmitted to the emergency center from the E-CSCF.

Finally, similarly to the first embodiment, the updated location information is location information of the SET including an updated location value (loc_upd) of the SET after an emergency call is established.

The emergency call processing procedure according to this embodiment includes three procedures of a registration procedure, an emergency call establishing procedure, and a location updating procedure. Now, differences of the third embodiment from the first and second embodiments will be mainly described with reference to FIGS. 7 and 8.

First, the SET registration procedure is described.

Referring to FIG. 7, when the SET does not currently set a data connection to any network, the SET requests the IP-CAN for a data connection and performs a data connection setup (S801). When the data connection setup is performed with the IP-CAN, the SET transmits a registration request message for registering the SET, for example, the SIP REGISTER message, to the P-CSCF of the IMS core along with other information (S802). The SIP REGISTER message includes SET ID, IP-CAN ID, and Emergency Indi. The SIP REGISTER message may further include SET IP Addr, HPLMN ID, SET Capa, and E-SLP IP Addr. Subsequently, the P-CSCF forwards the received registration request message and all the information included therein to the E-CSCF (S803).

Next, the E-CSCF may forward the received registration request message to the HPLMN so as to perform the HPLMN registration procedure of the SET (S804). Sub-sequently, the E-CSCF transmits an acknowledgement message, for example, an SIP 200 OK message, to the P-CSCF (S805) and the P-CSCF forwards the received acknowledgement message to the SET (S806).

Next, the emergency call establishing procedure (S808 to S828) are performed. Similarly to the first and second embodiments, the SET may perform a step of acquiring the loc_ini before starting the emergency call establishing procedure (S807). In the step of acquiring the loc_ini, the SET acquires its own loc_ini through interoperation with the IP-CAN or interoperation with the SUPL network.

In the emergency call establishing procedure, first, the SET transmits the emergency call initiating request message including the Emergency Indi to the P-CSCF (S808). The emergency call initiating request message includes SET ID, IP-CAN ID, lid, SET IP Addr, and loc_ini. The emergency call initiating request message may further include SET Capa, Emergency Capa, E-SLP IP Addr, and initial SDP Offer. The P-CSCF forwards the emergency call initiating request message to the E-CSCF together with all the information including the SET IP Addr (S809). The E-CSCF forwards the emergency call initiating request message to the E-AS together with all the information included therein (S810). In this embodiment, similarly to the second embodiment, this is because the intermediate medium processing the SIP signal and the LCS signal is the E-AS. Accordingly, in the subsequent step, the E-AS takes charge of the communication between the IMS core and the location retrieval subsystem.

Subsequently, a procedure of acquiring the mid_loc of the SET (S811 to S816) is performed. The E-AS first transmits the location service request message to the E-SLP (S811). At this time, the E-AS transmits the SET IP Addr together with the location service request message and may transmit other information included in the emergency call initiating request message together. The location service request message may be a message using an SIP or a message using another protocol, for example, a message using an MLP or an RLP. The E-SLP may transmit the received location service request message to another location retrieval function, for example, the V-SLP.

Subsequently, the E-SLP or the V-SLP interoperates with the SET to perform a predetermined location retrieval procedure, for example, an SUPL procedure, thereby acquiring the loc_mid (S812 to S815). In the SUPL procedure, the E-SLP or the V-SLP exchanges the predetermined messages with the SET through the IMS core or directly to acquire the mid-call location information including the loc_mid. Since the SUPL procedure (S812 to S815) are similar to steps S611 to S614 of the first embodiment or steps S712 to S715 of the second embodiment, the detailed description thereof will be omitted. Next, the V-SLP or the E-SLP acquiring the loc_mid of the SET transmits a location service response message including the loc_mid, for example, an LCS response message, to the E-AS (S816).

Then, the other steps of the emergency call establishing procedure according to the second embodiment will be described with reference to FIG. 8.

Referring to FIG. 8, similarly to the first embodiment, a procedure of acquiring the routing information of the emergency center (S817 to S819) is performed. The E-AS selects an emergency center on the basis of the loc_mid (S817).

The E-AS transmits a transmission message to the E-CSCF (S818). The transmission message may be the SIP 3xxx redirection message, but is not limited to it. For example, in case of an emergency location service in North America, the information for identifying an emergency center such as an ESRD, an ESRK, an ESRN, and an ESQK may be transmitted to the E-CSCF together with the transmission message. The information for identifying the emergency center is acquired by the E-AS in step S817, as described above.

In this case, the E-AS may select and transmit one or more of the ESRD, the ESRK, the ESRN, and the ESQK or may transmit all the information thereof. The E-CSCF having received the transmission message including the information for identifying an emergency center transmits an acknowledgement message to the E-AS (S819). The acknowledgement message may be an ACK message.

Next, a procedure of establishing an emergency call between the SET and the emergency center on the basis of the received routing information of the emergency center is performed. First, the E-CSCF transmits the emergency call initiating request message to the emergency center selected on the basis of the received information for identifying an emergency center (S820). The emergency call initiating request message includes SET ID, SET Capa, and loc_mid. The emergency call initiating request message may further include initial SDP offer and Emergency Indi.

Then, a procedure (S821 to S828) of opening a message transmission channel, for example, an RTP channel, between the emergency center having received the emergency call initiating request message and the SET is performed. The specific steps of opening the message transmission channel is almost similar to steps S621 to S628 of the first and second embodiments. In this way, when the call message and the acknowledgement message are exchanged between the SET and the emergency center and the message transmission channel is opened, an emergency call is established between the SET and the emergency center (S821 to S828).

Subsequently, similarly to the first and second embodiments, steps of updating the location information of the SET, that is, a location updating procedure (S829 to S836), are performed. Since the steps of updating the location information can be performed in the same order as the first and second embodiments, detailed description thereof will be omitted.

Thereafter, the SET or the emergency center transmits an end message, for example, an SIP BYE message, to the opposite party to release the established emergency call (S837).

Hitherto, the embodiments of the present invention have been described in detail with reference to the attached drawings. In the above-described embodiments of the invention, it has been assumed that the IMS core selects an emergency center. However, as described with reference to FIG. 1, the routing information of the emergency center may be provided by the location retrieval subsystem. Accordingly, it is obvious to those skilled in the art that an embodiment in which the routing information of the emergency center is provided by the location retrieval subsystem by properly modifying the embodiments of the invention is only a simply modified example of the present invention. Since the above-mentioned embodiments are intended to exemplify the technical spirit of the invention, it should be understood that the embodiments does not limit the technical spirit of the invention.

INDUSTRIAL APPLICABILITY

As described above in detail, in the method for providing an emergency location service according to the present invention, the IMS core having received an emergency call initiating request message communicates with the location retrieval subsystem performing the location retrieval function to acquire location information of the user equipment and selects an emergency center most suitable for the current location of the user equipment on the basis of the acquired location information to establish an emergency call between the user equipment and the emergency center. At this time, the location information of the user equipment can be acquired by the location retrieval subsystem to communicate with the user equipment. Therefore, according to the invention, it is possible to rapidly provide an emergency location service using the IMS core.

According to the invention, it is possible to acquire the location information of the user equipment using a system for providing a user plane based location service, for example, a location retrieval subsystem including an SLP and thus to provide an emergency location service using the location information. Accordingly, it is possible to efficiently provide an emergency location service using the IMS core regardless of characteristics or structures of networks for providing a location service.

Referenced by
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Classifications
U.S. Classification370/352, 379/45
International ClassificationH04W4/02, H04W4/22, H04L12/66, H04M11/04
Cooperative ClassificationH04L65/1016, H04L65/4061, H04W4/02, H04W4/22, H04W4/20, H04W76/007, H04W4/001, H04L67/18
European ClassificationH04L29/08N17, H04L29/06M4P, H04W4/02, H04W4/20, H04W4/00A
Legal Events
DateCodeEventDescription
May 27, 2008ASAssignment
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST;ASSIGNOR:SIM, DONG HI;REEL/FRAME:021004/0702
Owner name: LG ELECTRONICS INC., KOREA, REPUBLIC OF
Effective date: 20080304