Telecom Applications

LNP Solutions

Enabling local number portability mandated by the Federal Communications Commission is a basic aspect of doing business of every carrier in the local exchange market.

Implementing local number portability requires service providers to exchange data with regional Number Portability Administrator Centers (NPACs) each time a customers changes providers.

For a competitive local exchange carrier, the LNP process involves informing the regional NPAC that the CLEC is the new service provider and specifying the date on which a customers number will be ported.

There are seven NPACs in the United States and one in Canada supporting number portability.

DSET Corporation has been instrumental in launching LNP on the national level and in enabling providers to meet the FCCs portability mandate. DSET application development tools were employed to build the service management system in production at each NPAC. Every service provider involved used DSET application development tools to build their service management systems for the first trial implementation of LNP in the Midwest Region in 1997. Virtually all LNP applications built by other vendors have been developed using DSET tools and services.

Partnering with Lockheed Martin (now Neustar Inc.), the first national NPAC administrator, DSET created the nations only interoperability test center to ensure every vendors systems meet the requirements for supporting number portability.

The implementation of LNP requires installation of the following systems in the service providers' network. Each of these systems play an important role in insuring that the phone calls made to published numbers are routed quickly and correctly to the network assigned numbers (LRN).

Local Service Order Administration System(LSOA)
Local Service Management System (LSMS)
Service Control Points (SCPs) and / or
Service Transfer Points (STPs)

NE Technology supplies the industry-leading implementations of the LSOA, LSMS and an NPAC-SMS simulator.

LSOA is the LNP component that hosts the carrier-change orders - their initiation, management and mediation. It communicates with the NPAC as well as the LSMS. NE's LSOA is feature-rich implementation designed to meet the rigid requirements of the local exchage market. The product's implementation is fully compliant with NANC2.2 specification, features a java-based GUI and runs on multiple hardware platforms including Sun, Windows NT, HP-UX and IBM/AIX. The architecture is highly scalable and permits connections to multiple NPACs and can connect with several back-end order systems.

For number porting to operate effectively, all local exchange carriers (LECs) must deploy certain compatible systems and databases to insure the smooth flow of critical transaction information. The LSMS acts as the local database manager for all the numbers ported through the regional NPAC. It receives activated subscriptions from the NPAC and provisions the applicable network elements to insure that the calls are routed correctly.

NE's LSMS is a cost effective, easy to implement system that offers full compatibility and interoperatbility with the NPAC Service Management System. Like other NE products, the LSMS is fully compliant with the NANC2.2 specification and features an adapatable architecture that allows for the addition of new network elements. It also runs on several platforms including Sun, Windows NT, HP-UX and IBM/AIX.

The NPAC Service Management System is the backbone of the number portability management system. It holds the local phone numbers and their associated local routing information for all the telephones within the region. There are six NPACs deployed around the country, each dedicated to a RBOC region. An independent (non-carrier) company accountable to a body that has representation from all the local exchange carriers operating within the region operates the NPACs.

The NPAC-SMS Simulator provides a test environment for a carrier to test its systems - particularly the LSMS and the LSOA prior to certification testing in order to hook up to the NPAC. NE Technologies is in a unique position to provide this tool since its products power the NPAC's themselves. The product supports the testing of the NPCA-SMS to LSMS interface as well as the interface between NPCA and LSOA. The latter interface is a management interface that facilitates the requests for changes to telephone numbers and provides mediation between the carriers in cases of conflicts. The former interface, i.e., NPACS to LSMS inteface, is designed to send the database of phone numbers and their local routing information from the NPACS to the carrier.