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How does UE camp (synchronize) to a NodeB?

1. UE uses the primary synchronization channel (P-SCH) for slot alignment (TS
2. After aligning to NodeB time slot, UE then uses secondary synchronization channel
(SSCH) to obtain frame synchronization and scrambling code group identification.
3. UE then uses scrambling code ID to obtain CPICH, thus camping to a NodeB.

What are the possible causes for an Access Failure in UMTS?

Missing Neighbors

Poor Coverage

Pilot Pollution / Spillover

Poor Cell Reselection

Core Network Issues

Non availability of resources. Admission Control denies

Hardware Issues

Improper RACH Parameters

External Interference

What is Pilot Pollution?

Simply speaking, when the number of strong cells exceeds the active set size, there is pilot
pollution in the area. Typically the active set size is 3, so if there are more than 3 strong
cells then there is pilot pollution.

Definition of strong cell: pilots within the handover window size from the strongest cell.
Typical handover window size is between 4 to 6dB. For example, if there are more than 2
cells (besides the strongest cell) within 4dB of the strongest cell then there is pilot pollution.

Pilot Channel failure - High Downlink Interference

From the drive test, following symptoms will be observed by using TEMS:
Received Ec/No of the pilot channel is less than 16dB and
Received RSCP of the pilot channel is high enough to maintain the connection,e.g. >- 100dBm and
DL RSSI is very high and
The connection finally drops.

Reason 1 no dominant cell

Solution:The most direct and effective way to solve this problem is to increase the
pilot channel power Primary CPICH power of the desired cell.
Reason 2 dominant interferer
Solution:The simplest solution to overcome this problem is to include the
overshooting cell into the neighboring cell list. This means the interferer now becomes
a useful radio link.
Reason 3 low best serving PPilot/PTot
Solution:The received Ec/No of the best serving pilot channel is very low (near or
less than 16dB) even though there is no other cell. It means the pilot power setting is
not large enough to fulfill existing downlink load.
Solution 1
The best solution is to add a new site with good coverage control at the problematic
Solution 2
The direct but ineffective solution is to increase the pilot channel power
Primary CPICH power of the problematic cell. With high pilot power, the common
channel powers and the required power for the downlink DPCHs will be increased. At
the end, the ratio of the PPilot/PTot does not increase much.


What can we try to improve when access failure is high?

When access failure is high we can try the following to improve RACH performance:

Increase maximum UE transmit power allowed: Max_allowed_UL_TX_Power.

Increase power quickly: power_Offset_P0.

Increase number of preambles sent in a given preamble cycle: preamble_Retrans_Max.

Increase the number of preamble cycles: max_Preamble_Cycle.

Increase number of RRC Connection Request retries: N300.

What are the typical KPIs you use to measure a network and what
Access failure rate ( 2%).
Call setup time (CS: over 95% of the time < 6-second for mobile-to
PSTN, 9-second for mobile-mobile. PS: over 95% of the time < 5second).
Dropped call rate ( 2%).
BLER: over 95% of the blocks 2%.
Average DL/UL throughput for PSD: 210kbps for loaded, 240kbps for unloaded.

What is Significance of Eb_No?

Eb_No is related to QOS of a service which in terms related to bit error rate.
Technically it is the minimum signal to noise needed by infrastructure
equipment after despreading it signal. This is a value used to compare different
infrastructure vendors. Eb_No changes with the service type.
For AMR 12.2 is ~ 4db for Node B
For AMR 12.2 is ~ 8db for MS

What are the possible causes for a Drop Call on a UMTS network?
There are several reasons for RAB Drop in WCDMA network.

Poor Coverage (DL / UL)

Pilot Pollution / Pilot Spillover

Missing Neighbor

SC Collisions

Delayed Handovers

No resource availability (Congestion) for Hand in

Loss of Synchronization

Fast Fading

Delayed IRAT Triggers

Hardware Issues

External Interference

What is the typical Call Setup Time for a 3G UE to 3G UE Call? What

are the possible RF related causes for a delayed CST in this type of

6 to 9 seconds

Multiple RRC Attempts (UE is on poor coverage need more than Access Attempt)

Delayed Page Responses

High Load on Paging and/or Access Channel

Paging / Access Parameters

How many types of handovers are there in UMTS?

Soft/Softer Handover

Inter Frequency Handover

Inter RAT Handover

Core Network Hard Handover

Service based handover to GSM

HSDPA Mobility

What are the possible causes for an IRAT Failure?

There are several reasons for IRAT failure in cellular network optimization.
Major 4 reasons which played good role in WCDMA Optimization.

Missing 2G relations

Non availability of 2G Resources

Poor 2G Coverage

Missing 3G Relations

What may happen when theres a missing neighbor or an incorrect

Access failure and handover failure: may attempt to access to a
wrong scrambling code.

Dropped call: UE not aware of a strong scrambling code, strong


Poor data throughput.

Poor voice quality.

What is cell selection criterion?

Cell selection is based on:

Qmean: the average SIR of the target cell.

Qmin: minimum required SIR.

Pcompensation: a correction value for difference UE classes.

S = Qmean - Qmin - Pcompensation

If S>0 then the cell is a valid candidate.

A UE will camp on the cell with the highest S.

What are the conditions you typically set to trigger IRAT handover?
RSCP and Ec/Io are used to trigger IRAT handover:

RSCP -100dBm.


Ec/Io -16dBm.

What is the typical event sequence of IRAT Handover from 3G to 2G

Simple IRAT Handover Flow

Event 2d entering into compressed mode measurement of 2G candidates Event 3a

Verification of 2G resources
Handover from UTRAN Command from 3G RNC to UE

What is Paging Success Ratio? What is the typical PSR that you
have seen in a WCDMA UMTS network?
Paging Success Ratio:
Its Paging Responces to the Paging Attempts in WCDMA UMTS network.
Typical Value for Good WCDMA Cellular Network is greater than 90%.

What are the possible causes for a lower PSR?

There are several different reason for low Paging Success Ratio
- Non-continuous RF Coverage UE going in and out of coverage area frequently
- Very High Periodic Location Update Timer Keeping UEs in VLR long time after it moved out of
- Lower Paging Channel Power
- Access Channel Parameter Issues
- Delayed Location Update when crossing the LA / CN Boundaries

What is Hard Handover in UMTS? When will it happen?

Hard Handover in UMTS is a break before make type Handover
It can happen in the inter RNC boundaries where there is no Iur link.

Why is there soft handover gain?

Soft handover gain comes from the following:

Macro diversity gain over slow fading.

Micro diversity gain over fast fading.

Downlink load sharing over multiple RF links. By maintaining multiple

links each link could transmit at a lower power, resulting in lower interference
therefore a gain.

What is a typical soft handover gain in your link budget?


3dB (UL), 2dB (DL)


1dB (UL), 0dB (DL)


1dB (UL), 0dB (DL)


1dB (UL), 0dB (DL)

What is Soft Handover Overhead? What is the typical value in UMTS


Soft Handover Overhead is calculated in two ways. 1) Average Active Set Size Total Traffic / Primary
Traffic. 2) Secondary / Total Traffic

Typical Values are like 1.7 (Avg Active Set Size) or 35% (Secondary / Total )

Explain Soft and Softer handover? Give some advantage and

disadvantage for soft handover
In Soft Handover, the UE connection consists of at least two radio links established with cells
belonging to different RBSs. In Softer handover, the UE connection consists of at least two
radio links established with cells belonging to the same RBS.
It acts as macro diversity since UE is connected to more than one radio link at any given
point, adds redundancy and reduces interference. However there is a tradeoff between
soft/softer handover & system capacity.

A UE involved in Soft/Softer Handover uses several radio links, more DL channelization

codes, and more DL power than a single-link connection.
Consequently, if all the UEs connected to a particular RNC are considered, more resources
are needed in the RBSs, more resources over the Iub and Iur interfaces, and more
resources in the RNC. For this reason, the number of radio links involved in the Soft/Softer
handover must be limited.

What Resources are monitored for Capacity Management?

DL Power
Received Total Wideband power
OVSF Codes

RBS Channel Elements

What Radio Measurements are used for Congestion Monitoring?

Downlink Received Power
Uplink Received Total Wideband Power

What are the Eb/No targets in your design?

The Eb/No targets are dependent on the service:

On the uplink, typically CS is 5 to 6dB and PS is 3 to 4dB PS is about 2dB lower.


On the downlink, typically CS has 6 to 7dB and PS is 5 to 6dB PS is about 1dB

Simple definition of Pole Capacity

The pole capacity is the theoretical maximum capacity of the system. In WCDMA, this
capacity is only theoretical since, once reached, the system goes in an instable state that
leads to its collapse. However it is still a reference for expressing the load.
The uplink noise increases with the loading exponentially. When the uplink noise approaches
infinity then no more users can be added to a cell and the cell loading is close to 100%
and has reached its pole capacity.
Mathematically, to calculate the uplink pole capacity we need to know:
W: chip rate (for UMTS 3,840,000 chips per second)
R: user data rate (assuming 12,200 kbps for CS-12.2k)
f: other-cell to in-cell interference ratio (assuming 65%)
EbNo: Eb/No requirement (assuming 5dB)
AF: Activity factor (assuming 50%)
Pole Capacity = (W/R) / ((1+f) * AF * 10^(EbNo/10)) = 120.6
To calculate the downlink pole capacity we also need to know:
: downlink channels orthogonality factor (assuming 55%)
Pole Capacity = (W/R) / ((1- +f) * 10^(EbNo/10)) = 64.06

How to calculate maximum number of users on a cell?

To calculate the maximum number of users (M) on a cell, we need to know:
W: chip rate (for UMTS 3,840,000 chips per second)
EbNo: Eb/No requirement (assuming 3dB for CS-12.2k)
i: other-cell to in-cell interference ratio (assuming 60%)
R: user data rate (assuming 12,200 kbps for CS-12.2k)
: loading factor (assuming 50%)
Take 12.2kbps as example:

M = W / (EnNo * (1 + i) * R) * = 3,840,000 (3 * (1 + 0.6) * 12,200) * 0.5 =

The number of users could also be hard-limited by OVSF code space. Take
CS12.2k for example:

A CS-12.2k bearer needs 1 SF128 code.

Total available codes for CS-12.2k = 128 2 (1 SF64) 2 (4 SF256) =


Consider soft-handover factor of 1.8 and loading factor of 50%: 124 / 1.8
*.05 = 34 uers/cell.

What is a typical UE sensitivity level?

The service and load determines the UE sensitivity; in general, in no-load condition, the
sensitivity is between -105dBm and -120dBm. For Ericsson, the UE sensitivity level is
calculated at around:


-112 dBm



-110 dBm



-105 dBm



-95 dBm

What is a typical NodeB sensitivity level?

The service and load determines the NodeB sensitivity; in general, in a no-load condition,
the sensitivity is between -115dBm to -125dBm. For Ericsson, the NodeB sensitivity level is
calculated at around:

-124 dBm


-119 dBm


-115 dBm


-115 dBm

What is a typical CPICH power?

CPICH power typically takes about 8~10% of the total NodeB power. For a 20W (43dBm)
NodeB, CPICH is around 2W (35.1 ~ 33dBm).
In urban areas where in-building coverage is taken care
installations, the CPICH may sometimes go as low as 5% because:




1) The coverage area is small since users are close to the site, and
2) More power can be allocated to traffic channels

How much power usually a NodeB is allocated to control channels?

The power allocated to control channels may depend on equipment vendor
recommendation. Typically no more than 20% of the total NodeB power is allocated to
control channels, including CPICH. However, if HSDPA is deployed on the same carrier then
the total power allocated to control channel may go up to 25 to 30% because of the
additional HSDPA control channels required.

How Power Control is implemented in HSDPA?

Initial Power is set in the same way as open Loop Power control of DCH & there is no further power
control on HSDPA Shared Channel HS-DSCH. The Channel Rate is controlled by adaptive modulation
& coding formats.
The principles and functionality of the power control for the HSDPA associated dedicated channels are
the same as for the DPCH power control.
HS-DPCCH power is an offset relative to DPCCH depending upon whether the UE is in soft handoff or
The Power for HS-SCCH is fixed.

What is Eb/No requirement for HSDPA?

The Eb/No requirement for HSDPA varies with user bit rate (data rate), typically 2
for768kbps and 5 for 2Mbps.

How much is your HSDPA (max) link power?

HSDPA link power is typically 4 to 5dB below the maximum NodeB maximum output power.
For example, for 43dBm maximum NodeB power the HSDPA link power is 39dBm.

How to get HSDPA users in Ericsson System?

This is the formula:
HSDPA users average cell:
HS_Users = (pmSumBestPsHsAdchRabEstablish) / (pmSamplesBestPsHsAdchRabEstablish)

What are Events that can trigger the HSDPA Cell Change?
Event 1d HS Change of Best Cell in the Active Set
Event 1b or Event 1c Removal of the Best Cell from the Active Set

HSDPA Frame Loss

These counters relating to frame loss are available on the RBS to monitor HighSpeed data service in the downlink
- the number of HSdata frames lost, destroyed and errored over Iub in the RBS. There areseparate counters for each
of the priority classes.
- the totalnumber of HS data frames correctly received over Iub in the RBS. Thereare separate counters for each of
the priority classes.
The XX suffix represents the priority class and can range from 00 to 15.The counters can be used to indicate data
loss rate for the HS service.High frame loss will indicate potential congestion problems. RecommendedPerformance
Indicator for this is:

Why is Eb/No requirement lower for PS than for CS?

PS has a better error correction capability and can utilize retransmission,
therefore it can afford to a lower Eb/No. CS is real-time and cannot tolerate
delay so it needs a higher Eb/No to maintain a stronger RF link.

CPICH Optimization
Good Document on CPICH Optimization from Maxis
CPICH Optimization
You can view Document Here


Technical Background

Deployment Area

Performance Results

Traffic Results

Capacity Results


Download Full Document in PDF from Here

Deployment of CPICH optimization is driven by:
Improving current 3G coverage and increase 3G traffic
Improve in-building penetration for 3G

Reduce IRAT HO to 2G
Offload traffic from 2G layer

What are the processing gains for CS and PS services?











Power control In WCDMA

Open Loop

Inner Loop

Outer Loop

Open Loop Power control-The Open loop power control technique requires that the
transmitting entity measures the channel interference and adjusts its transmission power
accordingly. This can be done quickly, but the problem is that the interference estimation is
done on the received signal, and the transmitted signal probably uses a different
frequency, which differs from the received frequency by the systems duplex offset. As
uplink and downlink fast fading (on different frequency carriers) do not correlate, this
method gives the right power values only on average.
Inner Loop-In this method the received signal-to interference ratio (SIR) is measured over
a 667- microsecond period (i.e., one time slot), and based on that value, a decision is
made about whether to increase or decrease the transmission power in the other end of
the connection. Note that the delay inherent in this closed-loop method is compensated for
by making the measurements over a very short period of time. The transmit power control
(TPC) bits are sent in every time slot within the uplink and the downlink.
There is not a neutral signal; all power control signals contain either an increase or decrease
Outer Loop-The outer loop power control functions within the base station system, and
adjusts the required SIR value (SIRtarget), which is then used in the inner loop
control. Different channel types, which can be characterized by, for example,

different coding and interleaving methods, constitute a channels parameters.

Different channel parameters may require different SIRtarget values. The final result of
the transmission process can only be known after the decoding process, and the resulting
quality parameter is then used to adjust the required SIR value. If the used SIR value still
gives a low quality bit stream, then the outer loop power control must increase the
SIRtarget value. This change in the outer loop will trigger the inner loop power control to
increase the mobile station transmission power accordingly.

What is Cell Breathing and why?

The cell coverage shrinks as the loading increases, this is called cell breathing.
In the uplink, as more and more UE are served by a cell, each UE needs to transmithigher
power to compensate for the uplink noise rise. As a consequence, the UEwith weaker link
(UE at greater distance) may not have enough power to reach theNodeB therefore a
coverage shrinkage.
In the downlink, the NodeB also needs to transmit higher power as more UE arebeing
served. As a consequence UE with weaker link (greater distance) may not bereachable by
the NodeB.

What do you understand by Directed Retry?

When there is a co-existing GSM RAN, excess traffic in a WCDMA cell may
be offloaded to GSM If a call is chosen for Directed Retry to GSM, the
request for the speech RAB will be rejected with cause "Directed retry" and
then a request is made to the core network to relocate the UE to a specific
GSM cell, using the Inter-RAT handover procedure. This handover is a blind
one since the target cell is chosen not based on UE measurements.
Therefore, the target cell must be co-located with the WCDMA cell. Colocated GSM cells are assumed to have similar coverage and accessibility as
their respective WCDMA cells.

What do you understand by CQI Measurements?

Channel Quality Estimation (CQI) for HSDPA sessions only.
In order to aid scheduling and TFRC selection in the RBS, the UE sends a channel quality
indicator (CQI) report on the uplink.
The CQI report estimates the number of bits that can be transmitted to the UE using a
certain assumed HS-PDSCH power with a block error rate of 10%.