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Radio Network

Network Optimization:
Optimization: Contents
Contents
Radio
• Reasons for the Need of Optimization
• Performance Data Measurements
• Drive Tests
• Optimization Strategies

• Optimization of Database Parameters
• Example Drive Tests
• Example Drive Tests: Exercises

MN 1790

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• Optimization of Physical Parameters

7-1

Reasons for
for the
the Need
Need of
of Optimization
Optimization
Reasons
Network optimization is an iterative process which should improve the quality and performance of a
network and also run the network more efficiently. As in any optimization problem, also in network
optimization, the network will mostly not run optimal from the very beginning. There can be
mentioned several reasons:

• Statistical nature of the involved processes like e.g. traffic and RF propagation
• Dynamical nature of the involved processes like e.g. change of the subscriber’s telephone
behavior (e.g. SMS)
• Wrong (or only too rough) planning assumptions, input data and/or planning models
• Increasing number of subscribers

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• Systematic inaccuracies

• Installation errors (for example a wrong cabling: transmitting into cell A, but receiving from
cell B)
• Hardware / software trouble
• ...

MN 1790

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Performance Data
Data Measurements
Measurements
Performance
Performance data measurements can help the network operator for example to localise problem
areas as early as possible and also to verify improvements of the network optimisation.
Concerning radio network optimisation there are related performance data measurements foreseen
by GSM (see: GSM 12.04) and in addition also vendor specific ones.

The related counters could in principle be actualised continuously during the observation period, but
mostly a scanning method is used. Scanning method means that the system counts the number of
events not continuously but only at particular times. This leads to some uncertainty for the
measurement results. Nevertheless, the error performed can be estimated using statistical methods.
In general, the smaller the scanning interval the higher the precision of the measurement (for
constant observation periods). Typical scanning intervals are 100 ms or 500 ms.

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In general performance data measurements can be run continuously, periodically or sporadically, for
a long time or a short time, observing smaller or greater parts of the network.

7-3

Performance Data
Data Measurements
Measurements
Performance

Scanner

Counter(s)

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Performance data measurement(s)

Condition(s) for the updating of
the counter value(s)

MN 1790

7-4

. Before. Drive tests must be well prepared. during and after the drive test the following steps should © TECHCOM Consulting  • To realise that the network is not properly running be performed: MN 1790 7-5 .Drive Tests Tests Drive Drive tests are performed by the network operator for various reasons: • To check the coverage in a certain area • To check the quality of service in a certain area • To find the answer for customer complaints • To verify that the network is properly running • To verify that certain optimisation steps have been successful • ..

..g.Drive Tests Tests Drive • Plan the route where to drive • Plan the time when to drive • Determine the MS mode (idle mode/ connected mode) and also the call strategy (long / short calls) • Decide which values to focus on (for example: RXQUAL.) • Select an appropriate test equipment and check the test equipment • Think of notes which should be inserted later on in the recording file During drive test • Monitor the test equipment • Reconnect dropped calls • Insert notes in the recording file • Note interesting events separately (e. RXLEV.SQI.. on a piece of paper) After drive test • Make back-up files of the captured data • Replay the captured data and analyse them • Find out problem areas and problem events • Use further post-processing tools to display the captured data more clearly and to graphically display further values • Perform statistics and summarise the results MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  Before drive test 7-6 .

Optimization Strategies Strategies Optimization Before Optimization: Clean the hardware © TECHCOM Consulting  • Performance Data Measurements • Customer Complaints • Drive tests Optimization: 1) Physical parameters 2) Database Parameters MN 1790 7-7 .

Typical down-tilts are between 0° and 10°.g. Altering antenna azimuth: • to overcome coverage weakness between different sectors © TECHCOM Consulting  • to improve in-building penetration • to reduce interference in certain directions Increasing or decreasing antenna height: • to reduce or improve coverage • to reduce interference Change of antenna type • to achieve desired ration characteristics MN 1790 7-8 .Optimization of of Physical Physical Parameters Parameters Optimization Altering antenna tilt: • to reduce interference • to limit coverage area • to improve coverage (e. however even higher values (up to 25°) have already been used. coverage weakness below main lobe) Altering the Antenna tilt must be done very carefully to really improve the situation.

7-9 . Not really needed TRXs may interfere other cells.Optimization of of Physical Physical Parameters Parameters Optimization Addition / re-movement of TRXs: • Depending on the real measured traffic load either TRXs can be removed (switched off or blocked) or must be added. • The number of needed TRXs and also the configuration of the different channels depend on the MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  offered traffic. and the subscriber behaviour.

but only if together with the sectorisation also the number of TRXs is increased (compare Erlang-B loss formula) Depending on how the splitting is performed: • it may be a more or less expensive and difficult (time consuming) solution © TECHCOM Consulting  • Interference reduction • coverage weakness between the main lobes may appear • the capacity will be reduced if the total number of TRXs remains constant MN 1790 7 .10 .Optimization of of Physical Physical Parameters Parameters Optimization Cell sectorization / cell splitting: Can be used for: • Coverage enhancements (since the antenna gain of sectorised antennas is higher than that of omni directional antennas) • Capacity enhancements.

This problem can be overcome by using antenna near preamplifiers which improve the sensitivity and the noise figure of a base station system. the uplink and downlink coverage ranges differ. A repeater receives. Looking to the link budget: The better the sensitivity of the base station.26 (ETS 300 609-4) and GSM 05. the more fare the possible uplink range. In case of an unbalanced link..Optimization of of Physical Physical Parameters Parameters Optimization Implementation of Antenna near Pre-Amplifiers: Implementation of Repeaters: A repeater (see GSM 11. a proper running network requires a balanced link. Typical applications of repeaters are the coverage of problem zones like tunnels. and the uplink signal from mobile stations which are located in such an area. .05) is a bi-directional (full duplex) RF amplifier and is used to overcome coverage holes in a base station area. Repeaters extend but do not replace base stations.11 . in buildings. valleys. increased call drop rate and increased handover failure rate. In any case. © TECHCOM Consulting  Link imbalances are one reason for poor quality. amplifies and retransmits the downlink signal from a donor base station into an area with weak or no coverage.. Often the downlink range is bigger than the uplink range. MN 1790 7 .

Strategies: • Using spare frequencies in severely interfered regions.g. © TECHCOM Consulting  • Re-planning may become necessary. • In high-density areas often difficult. MN 1790 7 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Frequency Changes: • To overcome e. sever cases of downlink interference (therefore it is advisable to have some spare frequencies).12 . • Re-planning of TCH and BCCH frequencies. • TCH – BCCH change as temporary solutions in low TCH traffic load areas. • May influence other areas.

Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Frequency Hopping: Cyclic or pseudo random hopping? f0 f1 Example of cyclic hopping: HSN = 0 f3 f4 f5 Time in TDMA frames © TECHCOM Consulting  f2 Optimum frequency diversity due to averaging of Rayleigh fading ⇒ rural.13 . coverage limited areas MN 1790 7 .

g.14 . HSN =23) 0 1 2 9 10 TDMA Nr.g. HSN =14) f0 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 Re-use cell 15 (e. 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 f0 f1 f2 f2 f3 f3 f4 f4 f5 f5 time © TECHCOM Consulting  f1 Co-channel interference averaging Collision probability: 1/number of hopping frequencies ⇒ interference limited areas (hot spots) MN 1790 7 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Frequency Hopping: Example of pseudo random hopping: HSN = 1-63 Cell1 (e.

The MS checks the DL with the help of a radio link (failure) counter running in the MS. The BS checks the UL with the help of a radio link (failure) counter running in the BS. © TECHCOM Consulting  The criterion for the detection of a radio link failure by the MS is the success rate of decoding DLSACCH messages.Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Radio Link Failure (RLF) / Radio Link Timeout (RLT): (see also GSM 04. MN 1790 7 . The criterion for the determination of a radio link failure by the BS is either the success rate of decoding UL-SACCH messages or it is based on RXLEV / RXQUAL measurements. interference) which cannot be improved by power control or handover are either released or re-established in a defined way.08) Calls which fail due to radio coverage problems or which suffer under unacceptable voice or data quality (due to e.g.08 and GSM 05.15 .

The starting value Radio_Link_Timeout for the MS counter is sent on the BCCH system information type 3 or on the SACCH system information type 6 in the information element ‘Cell Options’. MN 1790 7 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Radio Link Failure (RLF) / Radio Link Timeout (RLT): The algorithm for the modification of the radio link failure counter S is the following: © TECHCOM Consulting  Starting value for the Radio Link Failure Counter: Radio_Link_Timeout In case of successful decoding of SACCH messages: Snew=Sold+2 In case of non-successful decoding of SACCH messages: Snew=Sold-1 value range for S: 0≤ S≤ Radio_Link_Timeout Radio link failure is detected if: S=0 This algorithm is only running after assignment of a dedicated channel (i.e.16 . in connected mode).

BSC./ inter.cell. BTS.17 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Handover and Power Control: Reasons for the optimisation of handover parameters: • To reduce the number of call drops • To maximise the time duration the MS spends in the best cell • To improve the speech quality Handover types: intra. MSC handovers © TECHCOM Consulting  • To reduce the number of handovers Handover causes: • (Bad) RXQUAL • (Low) RXLEV • (far) DISTANCE • (Power Budget) PBGT MN 1790 7 .

Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Thresholds needed for handover evaluation: Remarks L_RXLEV_UL_H RXLEV threshold on the uplink for handover process to commence (outgoing HO) L_RXQUAL_UL_H RXQUAL threshold on the uplink for handover process to commence (outgoing HO) L_RXLEV_DL_H RXLEV threshold on the downlink for handover process to commence (outgoing HO) L_RXQUAL_DL_H RXQUAL threshold on the downlink for handover process to commence (outgoing HO) MS_RANGE_MAX Threshold for the maximum allowed distance between MS and current BTS (outgoing HO) RXLEV_UL_IH RXLEV threshold on the uplink for intracell (interference) handover RXLEV_DL_IH RXLEV threshold on the downlink for intracell (interference) handover RXLEV_MIN(n) Minimum RXLEV required for a MS to be allowed to be handovered to neighbour cell (n) (incoming HO) HO_MARGIN(n) Threshold for power budget process MS_TXPWR_MAX Maximum transmission power a MS may use in the serving cell MS_TXPWR_MAX(n) Maximum transmission power a MS may use in the adjacent cell (n) BS_TXPWR_MAX Maximum transmission power the BTS may use MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  Abbreviation 7 .18 .

g.05: For DCS 1800 class 1 or class 2MS: -100 dBm For DCS 1800 class 3 MS: -102 dBm For GSM 900 small MS: -102dBm For other GSM 900 MS: -104 dBm © TECHCOM Consulting  L_RXLEV_UL_H and L_RXLEV_DL_H should be set some dB (e. + preamplifier) receiver sensitivity limit: For normal BTS: -104 dBm Example settings: L_RXLEV_DL_H = –95 dBm L_RXLEV_UL_H = –102 dBm MN 1790 7 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Level triggered handover: Depending on the measured and averaged RXQUAL_XX and RXLEV_XX values the system (MS and / or BS) may increase or decrease the output power or may handover the call. Remarks to the corresponding handover threshold settings: Receiver sensitivity levels due to GSM 05. 5 dB) above the effective (+ diversity gain.19 .

10 dB Example setting: RXLEV_MIN = -90 dB MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  The size of this hysteresis should be related to the standard deviation of the long term fading (typically 4...20 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Level triggered handover: There should be a level hysteresis between the threshold RXLEV_MIN(n) for incoming handover and the threshold L_RXLEV_XX_H for outgoing handover: RXLEV_MIN > L_RXLEV_XX_H + 4.10 dB) and should be large enough to avoid ping-pong handovers and small enough to allow fast handovers.. 7 ...

Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Level triggered Power Control: Depending on the measured and averaged RX_QUAL and RX_LEV values the system (MS and / or BS) may increase or decrease the output power or may handover the call. L_RXLEV_UL_P (Lower) RXLEV threshold on the uplink for power increase U_RXLEV_UL_P (Upper) RXLEV threshold on the uplink for power reduction L_RXLEV_DL_P (Lower) RXLEV threshold on the downlink for power increase U_RXLEV_DL_P (Upper) RXLEV threshold on the downlink for power reduction MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  For the power control and handover threshold settings the following considerations should be taken into account: 7 .21 .

L_RXLEV_DL_H = –95 dBm. To allow the system to perform power control before handover is executed. U_RXLEV_UL_P = -82 dBm MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  Example settings: 7 .22 . L_RXLEV_UL_P = -92 dBm. the lower power control level thresholds should be about 10 dB above the lower handover level thresholds.Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Level triggered Power Control: To avoid consecutive power increase or decreases directly after each other the difference between upper and lower power control thresholds should be large enough (e. L_RXLEV_DL_P = -85 dBm.g. U_RXLEV_DL_P = -75 dBm L_RXLEV_UL_H = –102 dBm. 10 dB).

Example settings: POW_INCR_STEP_SIZE = 4 dB © TECHCOM Consulting  The power increase and power reduction step sizes should be on the one hand small enough to enable an accurate power control. the power increase step size should be greater than the power reduction step size. on the other hand large enough to reduce the number of necessary power control commands and therefore the signalling load. POW_RED_STEP_SIZE = 2 dB MN 1790 7 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Power Control Execution: For the power control execution parameter settings the following considerations should be taken into account: Since typically a power increase command is more urgent than a power reduction command.23 .

or if there is only 1 TRX in the serving cell and the interference is continuous and not bursty.24 . Temporary solution: intracell handover © TECHCOM Consulting  RXLEV_UL_IH. there is a high probability of the presence of: cochannel interference. intermodulation problems.Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Quality triggered handover: Depending on the measured and averaged RXQUAL_XX and RXLEV_XX values the system (MS and/or BS) may increase or decrease the output power or may handover the call. Remarks to the corresponding handover threshold settings: L_RXQUAL_UL_H. adjacent channel interference. RXLEV_DL_IH = -78 dBm MN 1790 7 . L_RXQUAL_DL_H = 5 RXLEV_UL_IH = -85 dBm . RXLEV_DL_IH Intracell handover doesn’t help: if frequency hopping is switched on. intersystem interference. L_RXQUAL_DL_H In case of bad quality (RXQUAL_XX > L_RXQUAL_XX_H) and high signal strength (RXLEV_XX > RXLEV_XX_IH) at the same time. Examples settings: L_RXQUAL_UL_H = 5.

25 . i. To make ‘power up before handover’ possible. often it is more suitable to control the power decrease by the level criteria and to set U_RXQAUL_XX_P = 0 or a small value.Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Quality triggered Power Control: Depending on the measured and averaged RXQUAL_XX and RXLEV_XX values the system (MS and/or BS) may increase or decrease the output power or may handover the call.e. the following relation between power control and handover thresholds should be taken into account: © TECHCOM Consulting  Power can be decreased if the received quality is very good: U_RXQUAL_XX_P < L_RXQUAL_XX_P < L_RXQUAL_XX_H Example settings: U_RXQUAL_XX_P = 0 (or 1) L_RXQUAL_XX_P = 4 L_RXQUAL_XX_H = 5 MN 1790 7 . Power is increased if the received quality is bad: RXQUAL_XX > L_RXQAUL_XX_P RXQUAL_XX < U_RXQAUL_XX_P However. to ‘disable’ the power decrease due to good quality.

e. power budget handover 0 0 MN 1790 L_RXLEV_XX_H 63 RXLEV 7 .g.Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Handover Thresholds: RXQUAL L_RXLEV_XX_IH Intercell handover due to quality © TECHCOM Consulting  7 Intracell handover due to quality L_RXQUAL_XX_H Intercell handover due to level No handover action due to quality or level.26 .

Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization RXQUAL Power Control Thresholds: 7 PowerIncrease Increase Power L_RXQUAL_XX_P Power Decrease U_RXQUAL_XX_P Power Decrease 0 0 Example settings L_RXLEV_XX_P U_RXLEV_XX_P 63 RXLEV POW_RED_STEP_SIZE L_RXLEV_DL_P = 25 L_RXLEV_UL_P = 10 POW_RED_STEP_SIZE = 2 dB U_RXLEV_DL_P = 35 U_RXLEV_UL_P = 15 POW_INCR_STEP_SIZE = 4 dB L_RXQUAL_DL_P = 4 L_RXQUAL_UL_P = 5 U_RXQUAL_DL_P = 1 U_RXQUAL_UL_P = 4 MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  No action due to power control Power Increase 7 .27 .

Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Handover triggered by power budget: In an interference limited area (e. see link budget). but a neighbour cell offers a better service (a smaller path loss. small cells in cities) most of the handovers should be power budget handovers: Since the power budget hanodver looks for the serving cell with the smallest path loss. this kind of handover will: Reduce interference Prolong MS battery time © TECHCOM Consulting  For this type of handover not the level. or distance is the handover cause. quality. since all the corresponding thresholds are not exceeded in the serving cell.g.28 . The power budget is defined as the difference between the path loss in the serving cell and the path loss in the neighbour cell: PBGT(n) = (BS_TXPWR – RXLEV_DL) – ( BS_TXPWR_MAX(n) – RXLEV_DL_NCELL(n)) MN 1790 7 .

P) – min (MS_TXPWR_MAX(n).29 .P) 7 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Handover triggered by power budget: Assumption: BS_TXPWR_MAX – BS_TXPWR_MAX(n) = MS_TXPWR_MAX – MS_TXPWR_MAX(n) Where PWR_C_D is defined as: BS_TXPWR_MAX – BS_TXPWR If PBGT(n) > HO_MARGIN(n) the path loss in the serving cell is greater than the path loss in the neighbour cell + HO_MARGIN so that the neighbour cell is considered as the much better cell. MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  PBGT(n) = RXLEV_DL_NCELL(n) – RXLEV_DL – PWR_C_D + min (MS_TXPWR_MAX.

• Usually HO_MARGIN is set symmetrically. © TECHCOM Consulting  • A small handover zone increases the risk of ping-pong handovers. to move the cell boundaries. • Asymmetrical HO_MARGIN can be used to influence the size of the handover area and/or to move the handover area.e. i. MN 1790 7 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Remarks to the setting of the Handover Margin: • The HO_MARGIN setting should be a compromise between ideal power budget handover (which requires a small HO_MARGIN value) and a setting to reduce the risk of ping-pong handovers (which requires a greater HO_MARGIN value). • Adjusting HO_MARGIN values can therefore also be used to adapt the cell area to the traffic load or to avoid local interference.30 . • RXLEV_MIN(n) should be set to such a value that RXLEV_DL_NCELL(n) > RXLEV_MIN(n) in those areas where PBGT(n) > HO_MARGIN(n) to really allow the power budget handover as soon as the power budget condition is fulfilled.

Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization HOM: Handover margin for adjacent cell HOM = 0 MN 1790 HOM = +6 dB © TECHCOM Consulting  HOM = + 6 dB HOM = 0 7 .31 .

Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization HOM = +6 dB HOM = 0 HOM = 0 dB MN 1790 HOM = +6 dB HOM = 0 dB © TECHCOM Consulting  HOM = -6 dB 7 .32 .

• Usually for level triggered handover decisions more measurement values should be averaged than for quality triggered handover decisions since quality handovers must be executed quickly if sudden interference appears. MN 1790 7 .33 . decisions should include more measurements than for power control decisions.Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Remarks to the pre-processing (averaging) of the measurements needed for power control and handover decisions: In general: • Many measurements should be averaged in case that reliable decisions are necessary (better • Only a few measurements should be averaged in case that fast decisions are necessary. For level / quality triggered handover / power control decisions: • To allow the system to ‘power up before handover’ usually the averaging process for the handover © TECHCOM Consulting  statistics).

Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization BCCH allocation: Also neighbor cell list is target of optimization process: Missing neighbor cell ⇒ perhaps call drop Too many neighbors ⇒ bad statistics. perhaps wrong decisions Number of BCCH carriers in BA MN 1790 Number of samples per carrier and SACCH multiframe 32 3-4 16 6-7 10 10-11 8 12-13 © TECHCOM Consulting  In practice: ≈ 6-8 neighbors 7 . unprecise measurement values.34 .

Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Fast handover: Street corner effect: e.35 .small handover margins 7 .allow back handover MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  .g.predefined target cell lists .short timer settings .short averaging period of measurements .trigger: uplink measurement receive level below threshold . 20 dB loss Fast handover mechanism necessary: .

36 .Optimization of of Database Database Parameters Parameters Optimization Location Area: The size of the location area must always be a compromise: Too big ⇒ perhaps paging overload (PCH overload) (MS is paged in the whole location area) (MS has to perform location update if location area is changed) MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  Too small ⇒ perhaps too many location updates (AGCH overload) 7 .

37 .Example Drive Drive Test Test Example © TECHCOM Consulting  MN 1790 7 .

Example Drive Drive Test: Test: Exercise Exercise Example Exercise: Discuss the drive test given above: Localize the problem area(s) b) Suggest counter measures to solve the problem(s) MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  a) 7 .38 .

Example Drive Drive Test Test Example © TECHCOM Consulting  MN 1790 7 .39 .

Example Drive Drive Test Test Example © TECHCOM Consulting  MN 1790 7 .40 .

Example Drive Drive Test Test Example © TECHCOM Consulting  MN 1790 7 .41 .

42 .Example Drive Drive Test: Test: Exercise Exercise Example Exercise: Discuss the drive test given above: Localize the problem area(s) b) Suggest counter measures to solve the problem(s) MN 1790 © TECHCOM Consulting  a) 7 .