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Radio Access Network Audit & Optimization in GSM (Radio Access Network Quality Improvement Techniques)
Mudassar Ali, Asim Shehzad, Dr. M.Adeel Akram.
Abstract—Network audit is necessary to judge the network performance and maintain QOS standards. The network audit identifies inconsistencies or limitations in current overall network design, helps to improve processes resulting in optimized network and improved quality of service. Radio Access Network audit includes many aspects of network like performance, neighbor, parameter, frequency, competitive benchmark audits. In this paper, real GSM Radio Access network evaluated, and different issues, findings, trials and improvements have been summarized and observations/recommendations have been listed to correlate the practical aspects of RF optimization, which affect the performance, and QoS of an operational cellular network. Index terms— RAN, BSC, MSC, BTS, CSSR, CDR, HSR, TCH, COVERAGE, QUALITY, KPI, DT and QoS.
I. INTRODUCTION The mobile communication aims to offer anytime and anywhere communications between any objects. GSM , One of the fastest growing and most demanding of all telecommunications technologies . GSM Network usually called as ‘cellular network’ (as the whole coverage area is divided into different cells and sectors) is comprised of a mobile Station (MS) which is connected to the Base Transceiver Station (BTS) via air interface. In addition to other hardware, BTS contains the equipment called Transceiver (TRX), which is responsible for the transmission and reception of several radio frequency (RF) signals to/from the end user .BTS is then connected to the base station controller (BSC) via abis interface. BSC usually handles radio resource management and handovers of the calls from one BTS (or cell/sector) to the other BTS (or cell/sector) equipped in it. BSC is then connected to Mobile Switching Centre (MSC). This paper focuses on audit of radio access part of GSM network, suggestions to optimize the network and post optimization benchmarks. Following is sequence of Objectives. 1. 2. 3. Network Audit and Recommendations Optimization Plan and Cluster optimization Post Optimization Improvements) Evaluations (Benchmark
improvement can be achieved. The audit is usually a comparative process and requires an initial baseline of KPI’s and/or objectives. These can be derived from the design guidelines, service requirements, customer expectation, market benchmarks and others. The comparative baseline and/or the KPI’s can be re-adjusted during the audit itself to improve its diagnostic capabilities. Benefits of Network Audit. Key benefits of network audit are: Identify actions to improve network quality in problem areas. Discover inconsistencies or limitations in current overall network design. Discover practices or processes that can be improved or optimized Results in improved Network quality , thereby reduced churn Optimize overall network design: Reduction of excess network elements Postponement future CAPEX, leading to CAPEX savings It takes only a delay in the CAPEX for few BTS’s to justify the network audit investment Streamline processes: OPEX savings Network Audit Steps The audit has 3 distinct steps: 1. 2. 3. Information gathering (The Diagnosis) Information analysis and results (The Prognosis) Recommendations (The Cure)
III. INFORMATION GATHERING (DATA COLLECTION) Following data will be collected for radio network audit 1. BSS Network Design and Performance Data. All Site Data : sites position, antenna types, height, tilt electric and Mechanical) and azimuth, sector power, number of sectors, Number of TRXs per sector Macro Site data and Micro Layer data BSC and transcoder designs Coverage data Neighbor List Handover Parameter Frequency Plan and Interference Analysis OMC Statistics. Drive Test Statistics.
II. RADIO ACCESS NETWORK AUDIT The ultimate purpose of the audit is to establish a baseline that measures overall network design, quality, performance and process, and to identify and characterize the areas where
Accessibility Service accessibility is : “The ability of a service to be obtained. Revenue Churn report from Revenue assurance department requested by the user. SDCCH access success rate is a percentage of all SDCCH accesses received in the BSC. Major Complaints from Customer Care.International Journal of Engineering & Technology IJET-IJENS Vol: 10 No: 01 76 2. The KPIs are derived with the help of these counters using different formulations. either as a result of the first or the second repeated page. Possible reasons for poor SDCCH Access Performance could be: Too High Timing Advance (MHT) Access Burst from another Co-channel.1 Radio Network Audit Flow Chart V. as a percentage of the total number of call attempts for SDCCH channels. Paging Success Rate The paging success rate measures the percentage of how many paging attempts that have been answered.1 Listed below are the KPIs connected to accessibility. A. Co-BSIC Cell Congestion False Accesses due to High Noise Floor Unknown Access Cause Code 3. 3. INFORMATION ANALYSIS-RADIO NETWORK AUDIT FLOW CHART Algorithm for audit methodology used for test case of network of city K is given in Fig. SDCCH Access Success Rate. 1. SDCCH Drop Rate The SDCCH DROP RATE statistic compares the total number of RF losses (while using an SDCCH). PSR = Time _ of _ Paging _ Re sponses Time _ of _ Paging Possible reasons for poor Paging Performance could be: Paging congestion in MSC Paging congestion in BSC Paging congestion in Base Transceiver Station (BTS) Poor paging strategy Poor parameter setting Poor coverage High interference 2. when SDCCH _ Drop _ Rate = SDCCH _ Drops SDCCH _ Seizures Possible reasons for SDCCH RF Loss Rate could be: Low Signal Strength on Down or Uplink Poor Quality on Down or Uplink Too High Timing Advance .” In other words: Acessibili = ty Total_ NO _ of _ Successful _ Calls_ Setup l Total_ Calls_ Accesses_ to _ Network IV. RADIO NETWORK PERFORMANCE AUDIT All the events being occurred over air interface are triggering different counters in the Base Station Controller (BSC). Fig. within specified tolerances and other given conditions. This statistic is intended to give an indication of how good the cell/system is at preserving calls.
Percent of TCH dropped after TCH assignment complete. A handover attempt is when a handover command is sent to the mobile. Wrong or missing neighbor relations may cause an on-going connection to drop or be handed over to the wrong neighbor cell. CSSR = ⎛ ⎜1 − ⎝ SDCCH_Over flows SDCCH_Call _Attempts ⎞ ⎟ * (1 − TCH_Conges tion_Rate ) * (1 − TCH_Assign ment_failu reRate ) * 100 ⎠ Reasons for low call setup success rate could be: TCH congestion Interference Poor coverage Faulty HW units 5. Total _ TCH _ Drops CDR = TCH _ Normal _ Assignment _ successes + inco min g _ DR + Inco min g _ HO _ Successes − Outgoing _ HO _ successes The Call Setup success rate measures successful TCH Assignments of total number of TCH assignment attempts. on the other hand. Retain ability Service retain ability is “The ability of a service. Call Drop Rate . Call Setup TCH Congestion Rate The Call Setup TCH Congestion Rate statistic provides the percentage of attempts to allocate a TCH call setup that were blocked in a cell. Excessive neighbor relations in a cell. to continue to be provided under given conditions for a requested duration. Handover Success Rate The handover success rate shows the percentage of successful handovers of all handover attempts. Call _ Setup _ TCH _ Congestion _ Rate = No _ of _ TCH _ Blocks ( Excluding _ HO ) No _ of _ TCH _ Attempts Possible reasons for call setup block could be: Increasing Traffic Demand Bad Dimensioning HW Fault & Installation Fault High Antenna Position High Mean Holding Time (MHT) Low Handover Activity Congestion in Surrounding Cells B. Neighbor relations and parameters are cross checked to identify and remove One way neighbors Illogical neighbor Relations Re tainability = Total _ Calls _ Completed Total _ Successful _ calls _ setup Listed below are the KPIs connected to retain ability. once obtained. It is important for the neighbor list to be updated and optimized as it directly affects handover decisions in a mobile network. may cause wrong handover decision on the part of the BSS because of inaccurate measurements.International Journal of Engineering & Technology IJET-IJENS Vol: 10 No: 01 77 Congestion on TCH 4. 1. NEIGHBOR. CSSR = 1 − SDCCH _ Congestion _ Rate * TCH _ Assignment _ Success _ Rate *DR is directed retry ( ) Possible reasons for TCH Drop Call Rate could be: Low Signal Strength on Down or Uplink Lack of Best Server Congestion in neighboring cells Battery Flaw Poor Quality on Down or Uplink Too High Timing Advance Antenna problems Low BTS Output Power Missing Neighboring Cell Definitions Unsuccessful Outgoing Handover Unsuccessful Incoming Handover 2. PARAMETERS AND FREQUENCY AUDIT. Call Setup Success Rate This KPI gives rate of drop call.” In other words: HOSR Possible reasons for poor handover success rate could be: Congestion Link Connection or HW Failure Bad Antenna Installation The MS Measures Signal Strength of another Co-orAdjacent Cell than Presumed Incorrect Handover Relations Incorrect Locating Parameter Setting Bad Radio Coverage High Interference. Co-channel or Adjacent VI.
Fig 3. VII. TEMS.64% 72. Coverage Plot for Operator 1 For City K : Fig . which is also visible in KPIs Fig 2 . Below is coverage and quality comparison for two operators for a city.4 Quality Plots for Operator 1 For City K. COMPETITIVE BENCHMARK AUDIT In competitive benchmarking. Formula For Coverage Rate: Covergae _ Rate = No _ of _ samples _ having _ Signal _ strength ≥ −90 dbm * 100 Total _ Samples Results for Coverage rate for operator 1 and operator 2 taken for city K are given below KPI Operator 1 Operator 2 COVERAGE RATE 94.International Journal of Engineering & Technology IJET-IJENS Vol: 10 No: 01 78 Methods used to assign frequencies in the network are reviewed and the steps are taken to control interference and maximize network capacity through frequency planning. Operator 1 has better quality than operator 1 . Coverage Plot for Operator 2 for City K Legend For Coverage is given below . Results are taken Drive test tool.77% Quality Comparison: As visible from plots mentioned in Fig 4 and Fig 5 .2 and Fig . Coverage Comparison : As visible from Plots mentioned in Fig. which is also visible in KPIs. BCCH/BSIC reuse is crosschecked. MA (Moblile Allocation) List is cross verified. coverage and quality comparison of network is performed with competitors. .3 operator 1 have better coverage than operator 2.
International Journal of Engineering & Technology IJET-IJENS Vol: 10 No: 01 79 Fig..Zafarrullah Khan.1000 (2001). ‘Radio Resource Management for Wireless Networks’. Artech House Inc. 5 Quality Plots for Operator 2 for city K Legend For Quality Plots is as follows : Formula for Quality: ( RX _ Qual0 + RX _ Qual1 + RX _ Qual2 + RX _ Qual3) + ( RX _ Qual4 + RX _ Qual5 + RX _ Qual6) × .. Romero J.07 Re ceive _ Quality = Total _ Samples Results for receive quality for operator 1 and operator 2 taken for city K.19% Operator 2 87. REFERENCES  Halonen T.M. GPRS and EDGE Performance. 2003. Communication quality of Service: A framework and definition.K.  ITU-T recommendation G. KPI Rx QUALITY Operator 1 88.. 2001  Bilal Haider. . Melero J. M.  Jens Zander.: GSM. John Wiley & Sons Ltd.18% VIII.Islam: Radio Frequency Optimization and QOS in operational GSM network.