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Master of Science Thesis in Communication Systems

Department of Electrical Engineering, Linköping University, 2016

System Information
Distribution in Massive
MIMO Systems

Simon Sörman
Master of Science Thesis in Communication Systems

System Information Distribution in Massive MIMO Systems

Simon Sörman


Supervisor: Erik G. Larsson

isy, Linköpings universitet
Martin Hessler
Ericsson, Linköping
Erik Eriksson
Ericsson, Linköping

Examiner: Emil Björnson

isy, Linköpings universitet

Communication Systems
Department of Electrical Engineering
Linköping University
SE-581 83 Linköping, Sweden

Copyright © 2016 Simon Sörman

To Ida
The 5th generation mobile telecommunication system (5G) is currently being
specified and developed, with large expectations on throughput and efficiency.
While 4G and more specifically LTE might constitute a basis of the design of the
network, there are some parts that should be improved. One thing to improve
is the static signalling that occurs very frequently in a 4G network, of which sys-
tem information such as synchronization signals, detection of network frequen-
cies, operators, configurations etc. is a part. It has been shown that the static
signalling requires both much energy and time-frequency resources. Since the
system information is not intended for a single user it is always broadcast so that
any user, and any amount of users can read it when needed.
5G will use a technique called massive MIMO, where the base station is equipped
with a large number of antennas which can be used to direct signals in space,
called beamforming. This thesis presents a new method for distribution of sys-
tem information that can utilize the beamforming capabilities of massive MIMO.
A simple model together with simulated user channel statistics from urban 4G
scenarios are used to show that the new method outperforms the classical method
of only broadcasting the information, with respect to time-frequency resources.
Especially if there are high requirements on the latency of the system informa-
tion, the new method results in a large gain.

Den 5:e generationens mobila nätverk (5G) håller för tillfället på att specifice-
ras och utvecklas med stora förväntningar och krav på datatakt och effektivitet.
4G, och mer specifikt LTE, kan utgöra en grund för designen av nätverket men
det finns flera delar som borde förbättras. En sak att förbättra är den frekven-
ta statiska signalleringen, där systeminformation så som synkroniseringssigna-
ler, nätverksfrekvenser, operatörer, konfigureringar etc. utgör en del. Det har ti-
digare visats att den statiska signalleringen kräver både mycket energi och tid-
frekvensresurser. Eftersom systeminformationen inte är riktad till en specifik an-
vändare så sänds den frekvent till hela cellen, så att alla användare, oavsett antal,
alltid har tillgång till att läsa informationen om det behövs.
5G kommer att använda sig av tekniken massiv MIMO, där basstationen är ut-
rustad med ett stort antal antenner som tillsammans kan användas för att rik-
ta signaler, vilket kallas lobformning. Denna uppsats presenterar en ny metod
för distribueringen av systeminformation som kan utnyttja möjligheten att lob-
forma. En enkel modell tillsammans med kanalstatistik från simuleringar av ur-
bana 4G-scenarion används för att visa att den nya metoden kräver mindre tid-
frekvensresurser än vad som krävs då informationen alltid sänds över hela cellen.
Med höga krav på låg latensen för systeminformationen är vinsten med den nya
metoden särskilt stor.

I would like to express my gratitude to Martin Hessler and Erik Eriksson at Er-
icsson Research in Linköping for guiding me and supporting my work with this
thesis. Whenever I was stuck, you would present many ways forward for me to
choose from. I would also like to thank the entire Ericsson LINLAB team for a
great time while writing my thesis. It has been inspiring to work in a such stim-
ulating environment. Another thanks goes to my fellow master thesis writers at
Ericsson who I have enjoyed many moments with during this thesis.
At Linköping university I want to thank Erik G. Larsson and Emil Björnson for
their help and advice. It is a privilege to have the possibility to learn from such
distinguished researchers.
Finally, I would like to thank my fiancée for giving me strength and motivation
whenever I need it. You have had a great part in creating this thesis.

Linköping, May 2016

Simon Sörman


Notation xiii

1 Introduction 1
1.1 Background . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 1
1.2 Problem Formulation . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2
1.3 Method . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
1.4 Limitations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3
1.5 Thesis Overview . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4

2 LTE 5
2.1 Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiplexing . . . . . . . . . . . . 5
2.2 System Information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
2.3 Random Access . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 9
2.3.1 Step 1: Preamble . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
2.3.2 Step 2: Random Access Response . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10
2.3.3 Step 3: Identification . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11
2.3.4 Step 4: Collision Resolution . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 11

3 Transmission Methods 13
3.1 Broadcasting . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 13
3.1.1 Single Cell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
3.1.2 Multiple Cell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 14
3.1.3 Beam Sweeping . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
3.2 Dedicated Transmissions . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
3.2.1 Precoding . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19
3.2.2 Channel State Information . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21
3.2.3 Reciprocity . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21

4 System Information Distribution Methods 23

4.1 Classical Approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 23
4.2 Proposed Approach . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24
4.2.1 Alternative 1: Static Pilot Slots . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 25
4.2.2 Alternative 2: PRACH-Preamble . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26

xii Contents

4.2.3 Alternative 3: Dynamic Pilot Slots . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26

4.3 System Model . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26
4.3.1 Time-Frequency Allocation Model . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28
4.3.2 Latency Model . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29
4.3.3 Pilot Model . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 31
4.3.4 Reference Model . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
4.4 Performance Metrics . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
4.4.1 Bandwidth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 35
4.4.2 Latency . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 37

5 Simulation 39
5.1 SINR Simulations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
5.1.1 Single Cell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 39
5.1.2 Multiple Cell . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 40
5.2 Beamforming Gain Simulations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 42

6 Results 43
6.1 Simulation Results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
6.1.1 SINR Simulations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 43
6.1.2 Beamforming Gain Simulations . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
6.2 Method Comparison . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47
6.2.1 A Minimum on the Bandwidth . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47
6.2.2 Latency Dependencies . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 50

7 Conclusion 59
7.1 Results . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 59
7.2 Method . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 61
7.3 The Thesis in a Wider Perspective . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 62
7.4 Summary . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 63
7.4.1 Future Work . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 64

List of Figures 65

List of Tables 67

Bibliography 69
xiv Notation



Abbreviation Definition
3gpp 3rd Generation Partnership Project
aoa Angle of Arrival
aod Angle of Departure
bs Base Station
cdf Cumulative Density Function
cp Cyclic Prefix
csi Channel State Information
fdd Frequency Division Duplex
fft Fast Fourier Transform
gob Grid of Beams
ifft Inverse fft
isi Inter-Symbol Interference
itu International Telecommunication Union
los Line of Sight
lte Long-Term Evolution
mib Master-Information Block
mimo Multiple-Input Multiple-Output
mmse Minimum Mean Square Error
mrt Maximum Ratio Transmission
ofdm Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiplexing
prach Physical Random Access Channel
pss Primary Synchronization Signal
si System Information
sib System-Information Block
sinr Signal-to-Interference-plus-Noise Ratio
sip1 System Information Part 1
sip2 System Information Part 2
snr Signal-to-Noise Ratio
sss Secondary Synchronization Signal
tdd Time Division Duplex
ue User Equipment
zf Zero-Forcing
Notation xv

Sets, Distributions and Operators

Notation Definition
C The set of all complex numbers
R+ The set of all non-negative real numbers
U (a, b) Uniform distribution in the interval [a, b[
CN (µ, σ ) Circular symmetric complex normal distribution with
mean µ and variance σ 2
Qp (Y1 ; Y2 ) Random variable that takes the value Y1 with proba-
bility p, otherwise Y2

Defined Parameters

Notation Definition
T1 Interval between broadcasts of sip1
T2 Interval between broadcasts of sip2
T3 Interval between allocated pilot slots
N1 Size of sip1
N2 Size of sip2
N3 Size of pilot (pilot overhead)
pf Full coverage
pc Variable coverage
Ru User arrival rate
A (t) Poisson process of user arrivals
A1 (t) Poisson process of sip2 -covered user arrivals
A2 (t) Poisson process of non-sip2 -covered user arrivals
λ Intensity of the process A2 (t)
L Random variable of latency
LN Random variable of latency, case Normal Detection
LE Random variable of latency, case Early Detection
D Random variable of pilot retries
Si State in a Markov chain where i ues transmit a pilot
ai Probability of adding i users to a Markov chain in one
π Stationary probability distribution of a Markov chain
ti Probability of being served a sip2 if i ues transmits a
Br Bandwidth of reference method
Bn Bandwidth of new proposed method
Bded Bandwidth of dedicated transmissions of sip2
This chapter is a short introduction to the thesis. It is intended to provide a back-
ground, motivation and purpose of the thesis, as well as presenting the actual
questions that are intended to be answered by it.

1.1 Background
In the last years there has been a large increase in the use of mobile data. As of
today, being connected is a natural thing, and already the number of mobile de-
vices and connections exceeds the total global population. It is predicted that the
growth will continue at a fast pace, with the data traffic increasing with more than
50% every year at least until year 2020 [1]. To be able to support this increase
in traffic, the 3rd Generation Partnership Project (3gpp) is working to create a
specification for the next generation mobile network (5G) that is to be submitted
to the International Telecommunication Union (itu) in 2020 [2].

Massive mimo (Multiple-Input Multiple-Output) is a very promising candidate

technology to be used in 5G, that offers largely increased spectral efficiency as
compared to current systems. Spectral efficiency is a measure of how efficient the
usage of the radio resource is, and is most often given in bits/s/Hz. This makes it
possible, with the same bandwidth, to provide larger data rates than Long-Term
Evolution (lte), which is a fourth generation mobile network (4G). As dedicated
bandwidth is a very expensive resource, this is a very attractive property of mas-
sive mimo. The basic idea of this technology is to use many antennas at the Base
Station (bs), from one hundred up to thousands, to serve a smaller amount of
users (up to half the amount of bs antennas). This gives the bs many spatial
degrees of freedom, which can be utilized to beamform, i.e. to focus the signal

2 1 Introduction

Figure 1.1: Illustration of massive mimo beamforming.

energy at a specific user, see Figure 1.1. By beamforming at several users at once,
the bs can effectively communicate with several users at the exact same time and
exact same frequency. The focusing of energy in space also reduces the energy
that is wasted by transmitting signals in all directions, leading to lower power
consumption [3].
A vital part of mobile networks is the distribution of System Information (si),
i.e. information about the system that is not specific to a single user. Examples
of such information can be detection of the network and synchronization to it,
cell identity, timing information, public warning messages, information about
accessing the network etc. Historically, the distribution has been performed by
broadcasting it frequently. For instance, lte defines a number of different signals
that all contain a set of the entire si. All those signals are broadcast with some
periodicities, which is explained further in Section 2.2. Important to note is that
broadcasting is performed without knowledge of whether any users are actually
listening. This is so that users always will be able to read the information when
needed [4].
Clearly, system information will have to be distributed in the next generation
networks as well. It therefore seems motivated to investigate the design of the
distribution given the new technology provided by massive mimo.

1.2 Problem Formulation

The aim of this thesis is to propose and evaluate at least one method of distribut-
ing si, intended for the next generation of mobile networks (5G). Initially, the
applicable research is investigated in an effort to thoroughly investigate the pos-
sibilities offered by massive mimo. Based on this, methods will be defined and
simulated in different scenarios. The questions that are to be answered by this
thesis are:
1. How can massive mimo be utilized for system information distribution?
1.3 Method 3

2. How efficient are the proposed solutions with respect to time-frequency

3. What drawbacks or limitations exists in the proposed solutions (e.g. latency
To be able to answer these questions fairly, the method used in lte will be in-
cluded as one option.

1.3 Method
This thesis is written at Ericsson Research in Linköping. The methodology and
content of the thesis are developed under supervision from researchers at the site.
In the beginning, literature was researched to investigate the relevant communi-
cation system theory. The background of the subject of massive mimo is based
on recent academic research and small case studies, as the subject is quite new.
As for the concept of system information distribution, the background is mainly
based on the procedure performed in lte and therefore some information about
lte was also required. Then, distribution methods were defined together with
theoretical models that relied on data extracted from simulations. All results in
this thesis stem from data collected from an internal simulator at Ericsson and
these models. The obtained results were analysed with aim of providing a rigid
foundation of answering the questions posed in the Problem Formulation.

1.4 Limitations
To keep the scope of the thesis to a reasonable size, some limitations have been
put on the thesis. They are as follows:
• Section 3.1 introduces three different methods of broadcasting. However,
only the first two will be considered.
• The thesis assumes that each bs will be equipped with 100 antennas. The
actual number does not show to be crucial, but this is still a limitation.
• Due to restrictions of the simulator, the thesis has only considered one type
of beamforming.
• Simulations of the actual si distribution methods have not been performed,
but the results rely on modelling of a system and theoretical analysis of
these models.
• Since there is a very large amount of parameters that affects the system,
some of them are not varied throughout the thesis. They are however cho-
sen in accordance with expectations of future mobile networks.
• The most complex variant of the models of the proposed method of si dis-
tribution has not been fully analysed due to time issues, it is only used to
motivate some conclusions.
4 1 Introduction

1.5 Thesis Overview

The thesis is structured as follows:
Chapter 1 gives an introduction of the thesis and contains the questions that are
intended to be answered by it.
Chapter 2 provides a description of relevant parts of lte as a background on the
current technologies.
Chapter 3 presents the different forms of transmission that this thesis considers,
which are broadcasting and massive mimo beamforming.
Chapter 4 introduces the two methods for distribution of si that this thesis de-
fines, as well as the models being used to analyse them.
Chapter 5 describes the simulations that have been performed to analyse the
methods defined in the previous chapter.
Chapter 6 presents the results that were acquired when processing the data from
the simulations.
Chapter 7 discusses the results from different perspectives, provides answers to
the questions from the problem formulation and concludes the thesis.

The leading technology for the fourth generation mobile network systems is Long-
Term Evolution. The first specification of lte was released by 3gpp in 2008 and
offers downlink peak rates of 300 Mbps and uplink peak rates of 75 Mbps. How-
ever, it was not fully classified as advanced 4G by itu until a new release in 2011.
lte has enjoyed a great commercial and technological success, therefore it makes
sense to compare the next generations networks to lte, and in some parts base
the design on it [5].
This chapter presents those parts of lte that is of concern to this thesis. It aims
to provide a sufficient background of currently used technologies.

2.1 Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiplexing

The basic modulation method used in lte is Orthogonal Frequency-Division
Multiplexing (ofdm), which is a modulation that uses a large number of nar-
rowband subcarriers. A basic ofdm modulator using N subcarriers can be de-
scribed with the illustration in Figure 2.1. The modulator takes complex symbols
in blocks of N and modulates each one with a different frequency. All carriers
are then added to obtain the transmitted signal.
The frequencies of the subcarriers are all separated with a fixed spacing ∆f = 1/Tu
so that fn+1 = fn + ∆f . Here Tu denotes the modulation symbol time for all sub-
carriers, and is often referred to as the useful symbol time. Due to the relation
between these two parameters, the signals on two different subcarriers are orthog-
onal over a symbol time interval. This can be seen graphically by first realising
that the spectrum of a single subcarrier is a sinc2 -function with zero-crossings
spaced with ∆f assuming a rectangular pulse-shape. A sufficient condition on

6 2 LTE


s0 , s1 , s2 , . . . f1 x(t)
S→P +

sN −1
fN −1

Figure 2.1: Illustration of OFDM modulation.

the pulse-shape is that it fulfils the Nyquist criterion, which means that it should
have the same zero-crossings as the rectangular pulse. The resulting spectrum
of the subcarriers looks as in Figure 2.2, where each carrier has an individual
line. In the figure it can be seen that at each subcarrier’s peak, the other subcar-
riers have zero signal energy. The spectrum of the total signal is the sum of all
subcarrier spectra.
To see mathematically why the subcarriers are orthogonal, we observe that the
signal on a subcarrier with frequency fn can be expressed in complex baseband
notation by xn (t) = sn ej2πnt/Tu . We then have orthogonality between different
subcarriers (m , n) due to
xm (t)xn∗ (t) dt = sm sn∗ ej2π(m−n)t/Tu dt = 0. (2.1)
0 0

ofdm modulation has several desirable properties:

• The subcarriers are almost always chosen to be narrowband, i.e. their band-
width is smaller than the coherence bandwidth of the channel. This implies
that they will not be subject to frequency selectivity, which removes the
need for equalization.
• The modulation provides full control over both the time and frequency do-
main, for instance giving more freedom to the lte scheduler. The scheduler
makes decisions on when and where in the time-frequency grid different
signals should be sent.
• Although the description of modulation above includes many carriers, both
the demodulation and the modulation can be implemented using a single
carrier in conjunction with fft (Fast Fourier Transform) and Inverse fft
(ifft) processing respectively.
The orthogonality between subcarriers rely on an ideal scenario with no time
dispersion over the entire band that is used. This is of course not the case in
reality and thus the carriers will not be entirely orthogonal and the modulation
2.1 Orthogonal Frequency-Division Multiplexing 7

Energy Spectral Density

fc -3∆f fc -2∆f fc -∆f fc fc +∆f fc +2∆f fc +3∆f


Figure 2.2: The spectrum of an ODFM signal.

will suffer from Inter-Symbol Interference (isi). This problem is solved by the
insertion of a Cyclic Prefix (cp) in front of every ofdm symbol. The cp is simply
the last part of the ofdm symbol and we denote its length by TCP . Figure 2.3
illustrates that if the demodulator only integrates over the useful time interval,
the orthogonality is preserved even towards signal components that are not time
delayed by more than TCP , since the integration is only performed over one ofdm
symbol together with its cp. As in (2.1), this is also easily shown by an integral,
in which τ ≤ TCP :

ZTu Zτ ZTu
xm (t)xn∗ (t − τ) dt = xm (t)xn∗ (t − τ + Tu ) dt + xm (t)xn∗ (t − τ) dt
0 0 τ
Zτ ZTu
= sm sn∗ ej2π(m−n)t/Tu ej2πnτ/Tu dt + sm sn∗ ej2π(m−n)t/Tu ej2πnτ/Tu dt = 0. (2.2)
0 τ

The simplification of the first term in the second equality is valid due to the fact
that ej2πnTu /Tu = 1, and therefore the shift of Tu disappears. It should be noted
that the use of a Cyclic Prefix entails that only Tu / (Tu + TCP ) of the received signal
energy is used for demodulation [6].

In lte under normal operation we have ∆f = 15 kHz and TCP ≈ 5.1 µs in every
seventh ofdm symbol and TCP ≈ 4.7 µs in all other symbols. The reason for this
is that the symbols should fill the defined time slot of 0.5 s [4].
8 2 LTE

Direct path

Time-delayed path

Integration interval

Figure 2.3: Time dispersion is handled in ofdm with the insertion of a Cyclic

Since ofdm is a multi-carrier modulation scheme that provides control of both

the time and frequency domain, it is usually visualized by a time-frequency grid
as shown in Figure 2.4. Each rectangle in the grid corresponds to one single
complex symbol, sent in one slot of duration Tu + TCP and on one subcarrier
fk . This figure also shows the important concept of time-frequency resources; a
certain number of bits corresponds to a certain number of symbols depending on
the underlying symbol constellation. These symbols can be placed freely on the
grid, but the used amount of resources measured in seconds times Hertz are the

Since ofdm has been very successful in lte, it is highly likely that ofdm will
also be the foundation of the modulation used in 5G. There are currently some
waveform suggestions for 5G, all of which are multi-carrier modulations that can
be seen as ofdm with some modifications. Thus the time-frequency grid visual-
ization is valid also for those schemes [7] [8].

fN −1
) .
r .. .
r ..
ar f4
u bc
(s f3
nc f2
ue f1
Fr f0
... ...
m−3 m−2 m−1 m m+1 m+2 m+3

Time (ofdm-symbol number)

Figure 2.4: The time-frequency grid of ofdm.

2.2 System Information

In lte there is an amount of system information that the cell can supply a user
with, some of it is optional and some is mandatory.
2.3 Random Access 9

The first information that is needed by a ue is synchronization information (both

in frequency and in time) to be able to read further information and possibly
access the network. To do this, lte has defined two synchronization signals
called Primary Synchronization Signal (pss) and Secondary Synchronization Sig-
nal (sss) which both are transmitted during one ofdm symbol on a bandwidth
of 1.08 MHz every 5 ms. When the user has read these two signals successfully,
it knows the timing in the cell and its physical cell-identity.

Before the ue can access the network there is some more si that is needed. The
most important information is located in a so-called Master-Information Block
(mib), in which the content is very small (only 24 bits) and is broadcast with
an interval of 40 ms. However, the mib is extensively channel coded so that even
users with really bad channel conditions are able to decode it. The mib is required
to be able to read the rest of the system information, which is located in a range
of different sibs (System-Information Blocks). These contain different sets of the
total system information and are quite varying in size and transmission interval,
and some are entirely optional for the network to use. But in all cases, both sib1
and sib2 are required before the ue can finally access the network to be able to
operate in it [4].

Apart from the explicit information described above, lte also broadcasts a set
of various reference signals intended to be used for channel estimation, demodu-
lation reference, positioning etc. Unfortunately all these static signals has to be
transmitted at all times, even when there are no users present in the cell. This
leads to some seemingly unwanted results, as shown in [9]. In that study, an
lte network was simulated for 4 scenarios during 24 hours, resulting in the his-
togram in Figure 2.5. The three scenarios with traffic were defined as “The most
relevant European scenario for 2015”, “An upper bound on the anticipated traf-
fic for 2015” and “An extremity for very high data usage in future networks”
respectively. The figure shows that the amount of empty sub-frames in the net-
work is large even under heavy load. The report does not elaborate on why this
is the case, but the result implies that the static signalling takes up very much re-
sources, since adding a large amount of traffic does not decrease the percentage
of empty sub-frames very much. This is compared to the case of no traffic, where
the only used sub-frames are static signalling. Note that the static signals are not
considered to occupy any sub-frames in these percentages. This motivates the
investigation of how to distribute system information more effectively in future

2.3 Random Access

When a ue wants to use more advanced features of the network, such as making
a phone call or switch cell, it has to connect to the bs with a procedure called
random access. After a random access, the ue is synchronized in time in the
uplink, compensating for the propagation delay, and it is scheduled resources in
both the uplink and the downlink, so that data can be communicated in both
10 2 LTE



Empty sub−frame ratio [%]








No traffic Low traffic Medium traffic High traffic

Figure 2.5: The ratio of empty sub-frames at an lte bs for four different
traffic scenarios.

The random access procedure in lte consist of four steps described below.

2.3.1 Step 1: Preamble

In the first step, the ue chooses a preamble sequence from one of three subsets
of the predefined preambles, which there are 64 of in total. Which set the ue
chooses from signals some additional information to the bs. One of the subsets
is used only for ues that are explicitly requested by the bs to perform random
access, e.g. for handover, and the preamble to be used is indicated by the bs. For
the other two subsets, the ue chooses a random sequence. The chosen preamble
is transmitted on a channel called the Physical Random Access Channel (prach).
The location of the prach is signalled in sib2. The reception of a preamble at the
bs indicates that there is at least one ue that is doing random access, and it also
provides an estimate of the propagation delay. Note that it is possible that two
users choose the same preamble and transmits it on the same prach resource,
but the bs will hear their combined transmission and will be unable to detect
that there is more than one ue [4].

2.3.2 Step 2: Random Access Response

In the second step, the bs responds to the reception of a preamble by broadcasting
a message including timing correction that the ue should use and a scheduling of
2.3 Random Access 11

dedicated uplink and downlink resource blocks. ues that used different pream-
bles in Step 1 will get individual resource blocks, but those that used the same
preamble are still unaware of the collision. The timing correction included in the
random access response is used to compensate for the propagation delay between
the ue and the bs [4].

2.3.3 Step 3: Identification

The last two steps of the random access protocol are intended to resolve any colli-
sions that might have occurred. To do this it is necessary to identify the ue. The
third step is thus to let the ue send a message with the needed information to set
up the connection properly, which includes an identity. The transmission of this
message is made on the uplink resources granted in Step 2. Two users that used
the same preamble will in this step transmit different identifiers to the bs [4].

2.3.4 Step 4: Collision Resolution

The last step of a random access in lte consists of the bs signalling that the
random access was successful for the terminal. The signalling is made with the
identity from Step 3. Thus, if two users used the same preamble, the bs will only
signal success for at most one of them, depending on which ue’s identification
message was detected in Step 3, if any [4].
Transmission Methods
When a User Equipment (ue) arrives to a network area for the first time, for
instance when it is initially powered on, it has to find the network. To make
itself discoverable, the network has to communicate some information to the ue
so that it can first synchronize to the network, and then there is as stated an
amount of System Information that the user should be supplied with. The si is
always transmitted from a bs, but the transmission can be fashioned in a number
of ways. This chapter presents the available choices of transmission methods that
have been considered in this thesis.

3.1 Broadcasting
A crucial part of current radio networks is broadcasting, which is a process where
the bs transmits the signal to the entire cell area, so that the transmission reaches
all users that might be listening. This is today vital to supply ues with system
information so that they can operate correctly in the network.
Important to note is that broadcasting can be done with no information at the
bs about where users are positioned, or about if there even are users listening.
Broadcasting is intended to make it possible for all users to read the transmission
at any time, without prior signalling to the bs.
Also, one should know that while broadcasting is commonly made with just a
single antenna, which is also the case assumed throughout this thesis, there is
some research that shows the benefits of using massive mimo for broadcasting
as well. In [10] and [11] it is shown that some special types of precoding (ex-
plained in Section 3.2.1) results in broadcasts that are more resilient to different
bad channel conditions by introducing extra diversity. Broadcasting can also be

14 3 Transmission Methods

made simultaneous to beamforming, which can be less power consuming than

alternating the two while at the same time introduce extra diversity on the broad-
casts [12]. However, we will not go into more detail about these techniques as we
in this thesis for broadcasting limit ourselves to one antenna.
This section presents three different methods in which broadcasting is achieved.

3.1.1 Single Cell

The possibly simplest method of broadcasting is in this thesis named Single Cell.
This broadcasting method lets each bs node in each cell operate in an uncoor-
dinated manner; the network does not need to synchronize different bss. A ue
in this scenario will only be able to listen to one bs, and therefore it chooses to
synchronize to the single cell from which the received power is the largest.
A requirement for this method to work is that the ue has to be able to separate
broadcasts from different base stations. This implies that the broadcasts have
to contain a cell-specific identity that is not repeated in cells that are too close
together, otherwise that will lead to inter-cell interference. Worth noting is that
the chosen cell will almost always correspond to the bs that is closest in distance
to the ue, as the path loss will most often be smallest for that bs. While not always
true, this can be used as a simple, well-motivated assumption for calculations. An
illustration of this is located in Figure 3.1, where three cells are depicted which
all have different identities. The ue in this case will probably synchronize to the
medium gray cell, but is free to choose any of them.
Expressed mathematically, bs i is transmitting a broadcast signal P si (t), indepen-
dent of all other bss, which will be received at the ue as ri (t) = j αi,j si (t − τi,j ).
The sum is taken over all signal paths, enumerated by j, where αi,j represents
attenuation of the signal on each path and τi,j is the propagation delay of the
signal paths. It should also be noted that the signals si (t) are time-limited to the
duration of the broadcast. This results in the total received signal
Signal Interference
X z}|{ z X
}| { z}|{
r(t) = ri (t) + n(t) = r1 (t) + ri (t) + n(t) , (3.1)
i i,1
where we assume that the signal from bs 1 is the received signal with largest
power, so that this is the bs to which the ue synchronizes. The summations in
(3.1) is taken over all bss in the network, and is valid for the duration of the
broadcast plus some additional time to allow for propagation delay.

3.1.2 Multiple Cell

Another scheme that is available for broadcasting, is in this thesis named Multi-
ple Cell. As the name implies, a ue might listen to broadcasts from several cells
simultaneously if this method is used. The first thing that is required for this to
be possible is that the cells are operating in a coordinated manner, such that they
all broadcast the exact same signals at the same time.
3.1 Broadcasting 15

Figure 3.1: Illustration of Single Cell broadcasting, each cell broadcasts in-
16 3 Transmission Methods

Each bs will thus send the same signal s(t), which due to multipath propagation
will result in a total received signal at the ue of
r(t) = αi,j s(t − τi,j ) + n(t), (3.2)
i j

where the outer sum is over all base stations, and the notation is the same as in
(3.1). As can be seen, this appears to the ue as nothing else than multipath prop-
agation of a single transmission of s(t), although the number of paths is larger
than in a single cell case. Furthermore, since the distances to different bss might
differ, the spread of the delays τi,j will be larger than the spread of a single base
station’s signal. The effect of this is that some signal parts from cells that would
be interference in a Single Cell setting are now turned into useful signal energy
instead. But some signal parts are delayed by too much and will still constitute

This method of broadcasting is also used in lte, although not for transmission of
system information but was intended for multimedia broadcasting. [4]

As described in Section 2.1, in an ofdm system the multipath propagation is

handled with the insertion of a Cyclic Prefix. It should be clear that the cp can
handle those signal parts that are not delayed by more than TCP (in reality the
actual time dispersion
n o that can be handled is somewhat smaller than TCP ). By or-
dering the set of τi,j into a linearly indexed set such that τ0 < τ1 < . . . < τN and
n o
make the same corresponding ordering of αi,j and letting τl be the minimum
τk such that τk − τ0 > TCP , we get
Signal Interference
z }| { z }| { Noise
X z}|{
r(t) = αk s(t − τk ) + αk s(t − τk ) + n(t) . (3.3)
k=0 k=l

An illustration of this type of broadcasting is presented in Figure 3.2, in which

the cell-edge ue might be able to use the signals from all three visible base sta-
tions, thus the received signal energy should be significantly increased and the
interference will be reduced.

Important to note here is that the TCP in lte is 4.7 to 5.1 µs, which implies that the
significant delay spread of the channel is not expected to be larger than this value.
A distance of just 1 km corresponds to a signal time delay of 3.3 µs, which then
should imply that the distance between bs i and the ue constitutes the largest
part of most of the τi,j . Because of this, it is motivated to make an approximation.
Let c be the speed of light, B = {bi } be the set of all bss with corresponding
distances di to the ue, such that d0 < d1 < . . . < dM , and lastly dm is the smallest
3.1 Broadcasting 17

Figure 3.2: Illustration of Multiple Cell broadcasting, all cells broadcasts


dk such that (dk − d0 ) /c ≥ TCP . The received signal is now

≈ Signal ≈ Interference
z }| { z }| { Noise
X z}|{
r(t) = αi,j s(t − τi,j ) + αi,j s(t − τi,j ) + n(t) . (3.4)
i=0 j i=m j

In other words, the approximation is that all signals transmitted from bss that
are close enough to the ue, as compared to the closest bs, will contribute fully to
the received signal energy. bss that are further away will only contribute to the
interference. Another property that makes this a good approximation is that αi,j
is almost certainly smaller for larger τi,j due to both longer propagation distance
and that the signal might have gone through more reflections. Thus, the signal
parts that have larger power also have a delay closer to the distance between the
bs and the ue divided by c.

Figure 3.3 illustrates the above approximation in a scenario with 3 base stations.
Each rectangle represents a version of the transmitted signal, with the color inten-
sity indicating energy, and the horizontal position representing the arrival time
at the ue, i.e. in total αi,j s(t − τi,j ). In reality, only those copies that are received
within TCP constitute useful signal energy, and in the figure those rectangles are
plain. The approximation, however, considers all signal parts from close enough
18 3 Transmission Methods





Figure 3.3: Illustration of the Multiple Cell scenario approximation used to

simulate signal quality.

base stations as useful, thus the vertically striped rectangles will also be included
as signal energy. The rectangles with a diagonal line are interference in both
reality and in the approximation.

3.1.3 Beam Sweeping

The third and last broadcasting method is set in a quite different scenario as
compared to Section 3.1.1 and 3.1.2. To use this method, the bs has to have a
Grid of Beams (gob), which is defined as a fixed set of beams (precoders, see
Section 3.2.1) for possible use [13].

The broadcasting procedure is in theory relatively straightforward; the base sta-

tion transmits its broadcast signal in one beam at a time, i.e. only one beam is
active at a specific time instance. This technique is referred to as beam sweeping
as the bs effectively sweeps the entire cell area with a set of beams. An illustra-
tion is available in Figure 3.4. Although this method directs the signal energy in
space, it classifies as broadcasting since the bs has no knowledge of where users
might be located, and thus it has to use its beams to cover the entire cell.

The effect of beam sweeping is that most ues will be able to receive a broadcast
with a larger signal energy than otherwise, since each one should be positioned
inside at least one beam. However, if this type of system is to have the same
latency as a system where the broadcast covers the entire cell, the beam sweep
has to be made quite fast. In fact, a gob with N beams will have to transmit the
broadcast signal a factor N times more frequently than a broadcast that covers
the entire cell.
3.2 Dedicated Transmissions 19

Sweep direction

Figure 3.4: Illustration of beam sweeping, broadcasting is made in one beam

at a time.

3.2 Dedicated Transmissions

The technique of having multiple receive and transmit antennas is called mimo.
In current technology, it is mainly used to enhance the signal quality on a fading
channel by introducing diversity, and/or to spatially multiplex several channels.
For example in lte, it is possible to simultaneously have 4 different channels be-
tween the bs and the ue, referred to as single-user mimo. Moreover, it is possible
to have those simultaneous channels to 4 different ues, which is instead called
multi-user mimo. The lte specification also allows a number of different config-
urations to create diversity from the multiple antennas [4].
Recent research has shown that it is possible to communicate with many ues in
the same time-frequency resource by using a large number of antennas at the
bs. This is referred to as massive mimo. Usual numbers are that the base station
antenna array should have a few hundred elements, and that this could serve tens
or even more terminals [3].

3.2.1 Precoding
Consider a system where the bs has M antennas, and there are K ues with one
antenna each. If we limit the system to operate within the coherence bandwidth
and the coherence time, the channel between each bs antenna and each ue is
just a multiplication with a complex constant in complex baseband notation. A
20 3 Transmission Methods

simple model for this system in the downlink is

y = ρd HT x + w, (3.5)
where y = (y1 , . . . , yK )T , x = (x1 , . . . , xM )T and w = (w1 , . . . , wK )T . yi and wi
are the symbol and included noise that is received by ue i respectively, xj is the
symbol that is transmitted on bs antenna j, and all wj ∼ CN (0, 1) are i.i.d. Thus
H = {hmk } is a collection of size M × K of all the channel coefficients. An often
used assumption is that these are i.i.d. hmk ∼ CN (0, 1), which models a Rayleigh
fading channel, i.e. that there is no Line of Sight (los) and that there is a rich
scattering environment. This is however not of importancenin this o thesis. Finally,
there is a power constraint on the transmitted symbols of E kxk ≤ 1. In total, all
this implies that the interpretation of ρd is average Signal-to-Noise Ratio (snr)
measured at the ues.
The way that massive mimo is utilized is that the transmit vector x is chosen in
a manner that exploits the channel. Let s = (s1 , . . . , sK ) be the symbols that are
intended for each ue, then x is created by precoding the symbols linearly with a
precoding matrix x = Ws.
The precoding matrix can be chosen arbitrarily, but some common options are
• Maximum Ratio Transmission (mrt): W = αH∗ (3.6)
• Minimum Mean Square Error (mmse): W = αH∗ HT H∗ + ρK IK (3.7)
• Zero-Forcing (zf): ∗
W = αH H HT ∗ , (3.8)

where ( · )∗ denotes complex conjugation and α is a constant chosen so that the

power constraint on x is fulfilled.
The different precoder matrices are chosen with different aims. mrt maximizes
the snr for each user but disregards the interference between users, for a given
transmit power. zf is the opposite of mrt, it chooses the precoding matrix so that
the interference between users is zero. mmse is the middle-road, it minimizes the
mean square error between received and transmitted symbols. Linear precoding
is not optimal but it is very efficient, and research shows that it is near optimal
for large M [14].
To see why precoding works, consider the zf precoding. The received vector then
√  −1 √
y = ρd αHT H∗ HT H∗ s + w = ρd αs + w. (3.9)
This shows that each user now has a channel that is independent of all other
users. The channel is only a scaling with a real constant, in which only the snr is
The procedure of precoding in this manner makes the bs transmit the signal en-
ergy in a very narrow direction aimed at the ues, this is called beamforming since
one can imagine narrow signal beams being sent from the bs just as in Figure 1.1.
3.2 Dedicated Transmissions 21

In this thesis, we will make use of the mrt precoding and the property of it that
the Signal-to-Interference-plus-Noise Ratio (sinr) scales with M/K for large M
and K [15].

3.2.2 Channel State Information

The precoding matrix in the previous section is evidently dependent on the chan-
nel matrix which the transmitter in reality does not know beforehand. Therefore,
some estimation procedure has to be performed in order to obtain Channel State
Information (csi).
The most prevalent method in massive MIMO theory to obtain csi is to rely on
channel reciprocity, i.e. that the channel is the same for uplink and downlink, see
more in Section 3.2.3. A common idea is to let all ues transmit reference signals,
called pilots, which should all be orthogonal and known a priori by the bs. Based
on the reception of these signals, an estimate of the channel can be made and used
for precoding. Note that this is not the only means of csi acquisition. Although it
probably needs at least as much overhead, another option is for the ue to estimate
its channel based on transmissions from the bs and feed those estimates back on
the uplink. The overhead in this method can easily be varied by allowing different
csi qualities; if the system can function with a harsh quantization of the csi, the
overhead is smaller than if better csi is needed. Also note that pilots could be
used in the downlink beamforming as well, for better decoding performance [16].

3.2.3 Reciprocity
Reciprocity is as stated a property of the wireless communication channel that
means that the channel is the same in uplink and downlink. There are, however,
different interpretations that can be made of this definition.
The simplest type of reciprocity in a multipath environment is directional reci-
procity, which means that the Angle of Arrival (aoa) of the channel is the same as
the Angle of Departure (aod). This originates in the fact that the most significant
scatterers for a user are the same in both up- and downlink [17] [18]. Scatterers
are the points in space that reflect the signals to produce a multipath channel.
Thus by estimating the few strongest aoas of the pilot signal sent by the ue, the
bs also knows which aods to use to aim the signal energy in direction of the ue.
To exploit this reciprocity, one can use a pilot of small bandwidth but the down-
link transmission can have a much larger bandwidth since the aoas and aods are
quite independent of the frequency of the signal. Obviously, the precoders in Sec-
tion 3.2.1 cannot be used with directional reciprocity, but the precoding matrix
has to be based on the estimated aoas instead. This type of reciprocity should
be possible to exploit in both a Time Division Duplex (tdd) and a Frequency Di-
vision Duplex (fdd) system, as the received aoa includes information for other
frequencies than the received signal.
At the other end of the reciprocity spectra, there is what is here denoted as full
reciprocity. This is the conventional form of reciprocity in massive mimo litera-
ture, where the channel coefficients are the same in up- and downlink [3]. When
22 3 Transmission Methods

the bs receives the orthogonal pilot signals from the ues, it can estimate the chan-
nel coefficient to each ue with some conventional estimation method. It may how-
ever be more expensive to try to utilize full reciprocity rather than directional.
Since the channel coefficient is only constant within the coherence bandwidth,
the downlink transmission can only use as much bandwidth as the pilot signal
used. For instance, if the system should use four times the coherence bandwidth
for the downlink transmission, the ue has to repeat its pilot signal (which is only
as wide as the coherence bandwidth) on four different carrier frequencies. This
type of reciprocity is only applicable in a tdd system, as the reciprocity-based
transmission must be sent on the same frequency as the pilot was received on.
Observe that reciprocity is a property of the physical channel, while the hardware
is not in general reciprocal. This can be countered by calibration of the hardware
chains to achieve full reciprocity [3].
System Information Distribution

As previously described, si is a vital part of any mobile network system. The

distribution of it has impact on for instance latency, energy consumption and
spectral efficiency of the system. This thesis proposes two different methods
of distributing si, of which one is an entirely new approach, while the other is
mainly used as a reference. These two methods and their characteristics are de-
scribed in detail in this chapter. Also we will present and describe the different
models that we will use to analyse them.

4.1 Classical Approach

The first method that is investigated is the classical approach of only distributing
the si via broadcasts. This is what has been used in previous mobile networks,
and for example in lte this comes with a price, as described in Section 2.2.
The formal definition of this method is simply that the entire set of system in-
formation is broadcast with any of the methods in Sections 3.1.1, 3.1.2 and 3.1.3.
The network is completely free to classify different parts of the set of si with
different urgency, and therefore broadcast them with different intervals. The im-
portant thing to note is that regardless of how this is done, a specific set-up is
characterized by a total information rate needed for its si distribution. For in-
stance, a system that has one 100-bit part of si broadcast every 10 ms, and one
400-bit part broadcast every 100 ms requires in total an information rate of 14
The term full coverage that will be used throughout this thesis, does not actu-
ally mean that exactly all users can decode the information that is being sent. It
should be clear that when a system has been designed it covers almost all users,

24 4 System Information Distribution Methods

but that the probability of a user experiencing worse channel conditions than
what the system is capable of handling is larger than zero. It therefore makes
sense to define full coverage as a probability of not being able to serve a user, or
equivalently, defining a percentage of coverage. In this thesis we will define full
coverage as pf = 0.9999, i.e. that with full coverage we expect that 99.99% of all
users can be served.
Since this distribution method is what historically have been used as standard, it
will in this thesis be seen as a reference to compare with.

4.2 Proposed Approach

In this thesis we propose a new method for distribution of system information
that is able to utilize the beamforming capabilities of massive mimo. But to be
able to beamform to a specific user, the bs needs some form of csi, as described
in Section 3.2.1. To obtain any form of csi, there has to be some communication
between the bs and the ue. Consequently, it is not possible to only make use of
downlink transmissions if dedicated beamforming is wanted.
The definition of the proposed method is that the entire set of si is split up into
two different parts, called System Information Part 1 (sip1 ) and System Informa-
tion Part 2 (sip2 ), which is visualized in Figure 4.1. The information in sip1 is
broadcast with full coverage, just as in the classical approach. The information
in sip2 is however broadcast with a lower coverage, meaning that only a certain
percentage of the users in the system are expected to be able to decode the trans-
mission of sip2 . The percentage will in the future be referred to as sip2 -coverage
and the probability will be denoted by pc . Note that the method does not specify
what pc is, but it is limited to the range 0 ≤ pc < pf . In the extreme case of pc = 0
we do not broadcast sip2 at all, and when pc tends to pf , this method tends to the
classical approach.
Obviously, some users will not receive the second part of the system information,
and this is solved by letting those users request a dedicated sip2 . When the bs
receives such a request, it could use the reception to gain some csi used for beam-
forming, but that is not required by the definition. What is required is simply
that the bs should be able to supply sip2 on demand.

sip1 sip2
Figure 4.1: The set of system information is split into two parts.

This proposed method does not specify anything about what type of information
that should go into which part, other than that sip1 has to contain information on
how to request sip2 if that procedure is not entirely fixed in the protocol. In any
case it might be useful to, in an objective way, think of sip1 as the information
4.2 Proposed Approach 25

that is most critical and is vital to all users, and sip2 as the information that is
good to know but not equally important.

The requesting procedure can be designed in different ways. In this thesis three
different procedures have been identified and are presented in Sections 4.2.1 to 4.2.3.

4.2.1 Alternative 1: Static Pilot Slots

The first request procedure alternative is also the simplest one. The bs pre-
allocates some time-frequency resources (slots) that can be used by ues to trans-
mit pilot signals in. A pilot signal is a specific sequence that is known a priori
by both the ue and the bs, which makes it possible for the bs to both detect the
request and to estimate the channel to the ue. There might be more than one
possible pilot signal, and in that case the ue chooses one from the pre-defined
set. All pilot signals in this set should be pairwise orthogonal, so that it is possi-
ble to separately estimate channels to users that happens to choose different pilot
signals in the same pilot slot.

In a system with broadcast signals that cover the entire cell, as in a Single/Multiple
Cell setting, the detection and reception of a pilot signal is sufficient to get some
estimate of the csi. But the type of csi might depend on the bandwidth of the
pilot signal. To be able to exploit the full reciprocity, the pilot signal might be re-
quired to have a relatively large bandwidth, and the allocation of wideband slots
could be expensive when only a fraction of the slots are used due to low load on
the network. With a lower bandwidth of the pilots, it is possible that the bs only
can make an estimate of in which direction the transmitting ue is located, and
can thus only utilize the directional reciprocity of the channel.

In a beam sweeping system, the pilot slot does not necessarily have to have a
large bandwidth. Consider a case where pilot slots are allocated directly after
broadcasts of sip2 in each beam. Then the reception of a pilot indicates that a
ue could not decode the sip2 that was broadcast in the beam that the pilot slot
corresponds to. Figure 4.2 illustrates that if a pilot signal is detected in the striped
pilot slot, the bs knows that there exists a user in beam 2 that could not decode
sip2 , and thus that it should make the dedicated sip2 -transmission in that beam.

Beam N sip2
Pilot slots
Beam 2 sip2

Beam 1 sip2

Figure 4.2: Example allocation of pilot slots in a Grid of Beams.

26 4 System Information Distribution Methods

4.2.2 Alternative 2: PRACH-Preamble

The second alternative is very closely related to the first one. This alternative also
has the ue transmit a signal in a pre-allocated resource to request a dedicated
sip2 .
Since the random access procedure is another vital part of a mobile network,
there is reason to assume that future networks will have a similar procedure. For
instance in research of massive mimo, there has been a proposal of a random ac-
cess protocol based on the lte procedure described in Section 2.3, but improved
to utilize the large antenna array at the bs. [19]
The idea of alternative 2 is to use a small subset of the preambles as requests
for sip2 , so that users needing a dedicated sip2 transmits one of those preambles
on the prach. This is as stated very similar to the first alternative, since the
preamble could be viewed as a pilot signal. The difference is that the request
procedure now shares resources with the random access procedure, and it might
thus increase the probability of collisions (two ues transmitting equal preambles
simultaneously) in these procedures. At the same time it decreases the probabil-
ity of a low utilization of the resources spent on the random access.

4.2.3 Alternative 3: Dynamic Pilot Slots

In both previous alternatives there are concerns about the bandwidth of the pilot
signal, resource utilization and reciprocity type. The third request procedure is
aimed at resolving these concerns by extending the protocol with a handshake
before pilot transmission.
Instead of letting the subset of preambles that can be sent on the prach signal
a request of sip2 , we instead let them signal a request for a pilot slot. The bs
can upon such a request dynamically allocate resources for that ue to transmit a
pilot signal in, which is signalled in the downlink of the prach. This alternative
ensures that resources for pilot signals are allocated exactly when needed and not
being unused, and they could also be wideband with no wasting of resources, to
make sure that full reciprocity can be exploited. However, this procedure adds
some overhead due to the extra signalling required to make the handshake before
the pilot signal.
A visual comparison of this third procedure and the two previous is presented in
Figure 4.3.

4.3 System Model

This section presents the model that is used for a bs in this thesis. A bs is as-
sumed to have 100 antennas that can be used for beamforming, but when the bs
is broadcasting, it is only using a single antenna.
To a bs’s cell, users arrive according to a Poisson process A (t) with intensity Ru .
Note that arrivals to the cell consists both of ues that are powered on and users
4.3 System Model 27

Alternative 1-2 Alternative 3

Base Station User Equipment Base Station User Equipment

sip1 read sip1 read

Failed to Failed to
decode sip2 decode sip2

Send pilot/preamble Send preamble

Detect request Detect request

Estimate Allocate
channel pilot slot
Dedicated sip2 Send grant signal
Send pilot

Dedicated sip2

Figure 4.3: Comparison of the different sip2 -request protocols.

28 4 System Information Distribution Methods

T1 T2 T3

Broadcast sip1
Broadcast sip2
Pilot slots
sip2 on demand

Figure 4.4: Model of the time-frequency resource allocation at the bs.

that for some reason needs si again, perhaps due to outdated information being
One important thing to note is that the value of pf is actually only used in expres-
sions concerning sinr. In expressions such as arrival rates and latency probabil-
ities, we will only consider those users that are actually covered by the network.
It is not interesting to look at the users that will not be able to take part in any
communication with the system at all.
In Sections 4.3.1, 4.3.2 and 4.3.3 we present different aspects of the model that is
used for the new approach. In Section 4.3.4 we present the model for the classical

4.3.1 Time-Frequency Allocation Model

The model that we are using for a single bs in the system is that it has allocated
time-frequency resources, as illustrated in Figure 4.4. This illustrates that each
bs broadcasts a sip1 of pf coverage with an interval of T1 , and a sip2 of pc cov-
erage with the interval T2 . We then model it as if the bs has allocated pilot slots
separated by T3 seconds according to alternative 1 in Section 4.2.1. Observe that
this model can also be used for the other alternatives by letting the size of the pi-
lot slot represent the overhead of the method being used. Lastly, the bs can send
sip2 upon request, and this is assumed to occupy the entire resource slot, i.e. the
bs will not beamform any other signal to other users or broadcast other informa-
tion in that resource slot. In the figure, these dedicated transmissions occur after
every pilot slot, but that is not required, they should occur whenever it is needed.
In a realization of a system, it is not required that the signals are always located
with a regular interval, but as this is very common in existing systems it will be
assumed for modelling purposes.
The sizes of all signals are in this thesis fixed to the values found in Table 4.1.
These values are chosen to be in proportion to what could be expected in a real-
isation of this system. Furthermore, we also fix the value T1 = 50 ms, which is
of the same proportion as sib1 in lte. The fixed coverages of sip1 , sip2 and pilot
slots leads to fixed sizes of the time-frequency resource needed for each transmis-
sion of those signals. However, for dedicated sip2 we assume both that the bs
is able to beamform with all antennas, and that it can adapt the resource alloca-
4.3 System Model 29

Table 4.1: The sizes of different signals are constant in this thesis.

Signal Notation Size (bits) Coverage

sip1 N1 = 100 pf
sip2 N2 = 1000 pc
Pilot slot N3 = 100 pf

tion based on the estimated channel to the user. This will be further described in
Section 4.3.3.

Note that this model also is valid if sip1 and/or sip2 is split into different seg-
ments that are sent with different intervals as with the system information in lte
(see Section 2.2). The only thing that is important is the total rate of the signal
that is required.

A user that arrives to the network is required to first search for a transmission of
sip1 . After this there is two different cases that are separated:

• Normal Detection - In this case the ue has to try to decode the next sip2
transmission before it is allowed to send a pilot signal.

• Early Detection - In the second case it is assumed that the ue is able to

detect from the received signal strength on sip1 if it will be able to decode
sip2 . That way, the ue can make an early decision that it has to send a pilot

A ue can as stated decode sip2 with probability pc . ues that need to send a pilot
signal do so in the next available pilot slot, and all subsequent slots until they
receive a dedicated sip2 .

Observe that the splitting property of the Poisson process entails that we can
write A (t) = A1 (t) + A2 (t). Where A1 (t) and A2 (t) are two independent Poisson
processes with intensities Ru pc and Ru (1 − pc ) respectively. Thus A1 (t) is the
arrivals of users which will be able to decode sip2 , and A2 (t) is the arrivals of
users that are not able to do so.

4.3.2 Latency Model

We define the latency that a single user experiences as the time it takes from
arrival, to when the sip2 transmission which can be decoded by the user starts.

To model the latency for mathematical purposes we first need to define the ‘choice’
random variable Qp (Y1 ; Y2 ) to be a random variable that takes on the value Y1
with probability p and Y2 with probability 1 − p. We can then model the latency
for a user in the Normal Detection scenario as
LN = U1 + U2 + Qpc (0; U3 + T3 D) (4.1)
30 4 System Information Distribution Methods

and in a Early Detection scenario as

LE = U1 + Qpc (U2 ; U3 + T3 D) , (4.2)
where U1 ∼ U (0, T1 ), U2 ∼ U (0, T2 ) and U3 ∼ U (0, T3 ) are all independent. In
these expressions U1 represents that the ue has to wait for sip1 , U2 that it has to
wait for sip2 and U3 that it has to wait for a pilot slot. U1 is uniform due to the
characteristics of a Poisson process, but U2 and U3 will in reality not be uniform
on a real interval since T1 , T2 and T3 will most likely be defined as multiples of
some common unit of time in a real system. However, this should still constitute
a good approximation since the sip1 , sip2 and pilot slot occasions are distributed
uniformly. In fact, for T1 and T2 being multiples of some common unit with
T2 > T1 , the approximation will be an overestimate. The users will then arrive
between broadcasts of sip2 , but there is almost always a broadcast of sip1 before
that, with the only exception being the users that arrive between the last sip1
before the next sip2 . The time between those two will most likely be chosen very
small, and thus very few users will experience that case. The result would be that
U1 disappears from the expressions for almost all users. One could view it as we
can count the time spent waiting on sip1 also towards the waiting time for sip2 .
The same could hold for the pilot slots, which further motivates why this is an

Also note that the model disregards that the signals are not instantaneous, and
that it assumes that a dedicated sip2 can be received the moment the pilot is sent.
This approximation is motivated by that the total latency will most often be in
the order of seconds, while the transmission and processing times should be in
the order of milliseconds.

Lastly, D is a random variable, independent of the rest, describing the number

of pilot retries a user has to make in order to receive a dedicated sip2 . This is
described in more detail in Section 4.3.3.

From (4.1) and (4.2) we can derive the following expectations:

T + T2 T
E {LN } = 1 + (1 − pc ) 3 + T3 E {D} (4.3)
2 2
T + p c T2 T
E {LE } = 1 + (1 − pc ) 3 + T3 E {D} . (4.4)
2 2
We can also derive the Cumulative Density Function (cdf) as
FLN (l) = Pr {LN ≤ l}
= pc Pr {U1 + U2 ≤ l} + (1 − pc ) Pr {U1 + U2 + U3 + T3 D ≤ l}
= pc Pr {U1 + U2 ≤ l} + (1 − pc ) Pr {D = d} Pr {U1 + U2 + U3 ≤ l − T3 d}
4.3 System Model 31

FLE (l) = Pr {LE ≤ l}

= pc Pr {U1 + U2 ≤ l} + (1 − pc ) Pr {U1 + U3 + T3 D ≤ l}
= pc Pr {U1 + U2 ≤ l} + (1 − pc ) Pr {D = d} Pr {U1 + U3 ≤ l − T3 d} .

4.3.3 Pilot Model

The process A2 (t) produces users that will have to send pilots. At each pilot
slot occurrence, all users that transmitted a pilot in the previous slot but did not
receive a dedicated sip2 will transmit again, and newly arrived users will also
transmit. The number of users to transmit in pilot slot n, denoted by Xn , is thus
only dependent on Xn−1 and A2 (t), therefore the sequence X0 , X1 , . . . is a Markov
chain. The state space of this chain is countably infinite as Xn in theory can be any
non-negative integer. We denote the state in which there are k users transmitting
a pilot by Sk , and the transition matrix of the Markov chain by P = {pij }∞ i,j=0 .
Element pij is then the probability of moving from state Sj to state Si .
We approximate the number of new transmitting ues as the number of users that
are produced by A2 (t) in an interval of size T3 . This is not entirely according to
the model in which users first have to wait for at least sip1 before being allowed
to transmit a pilot. But the amount of new users that will transmit a pilot signal
will still correspond to that random variable. We will denote the probability of i
new users arriving that needs to transmit pilots by ai , which due to the Poisson
process will have Poisson distribution with expected value λ = Ru (1 − pc ) T3 :
λi −λ
ai = e . (4.7)

Furthermore, we will also let

ti = Pr {Being served a dedicated sip2 | i users transmitting pilots} , (4.8)
which is defined for i ≥ 1 since it makes no sense in serving a sip2 if no users are
requesting it.
It is only interesting to consider a Markov chain that is ’well-behaved’, P i.e. that
there exists a stationary distribution vector π such that π = Pπ and ∞ i=0 πi = 1.
It is convenient to start the indices of π on 0 since it in steady-state then holds that
Pr {X = Sk } = πk . An infinite Markov chain can be shown to have a stationary
distribution if there exists a function v : S → R+ and a finite set of states Γ such
E {v (X1 ) |X0 = s} < ∞, for s ∈ Γ
E {v (X1 ) − v (X0 ) |X0 = s} < 0, for s < Γ ,
which is called Foster’s criterion [20].
Given the values of π and ti we can obtain expressions for E {D} and Pr {D = d}
32 4 System Information Distribution Methods

that are needed to calculate (4.3) through (4.6). It is easy to realize that

X πk
E {D} = E {D|X = Sk } , (4.10)
1 − π0
i.e. it is the sum over all states where at least one user is transmitting a pilot, of
the probability of finding the Markov chain in that state, times the conditioned
expected value. The sum starts on 1 user as there will be at least 1 user when a
ue itself wants a dedicated sip2 . Furthermore, for k > 0 it holds that
 ∞

 X 
E {D|X = Sk } = tk · 0 + (1 − tk ) 1 +
 pik E {D|X = Si } . (4.11)
This formula captures that if the ue is served, then it has to do zero retries, and
else it has to do one retry followed by a transition in the Markov chain’s state
space leading to the addition of the expected number of retries from that point.
In total, (4.11) gives an infinite linear system of equations for the conditioned
expected values, which can then be summed according to (4.10).
The values of Pr {D = d} can be retrieved by defining the following vectors and
t = (t1 , t2 , t3 , t4 , . . .)T , (4.12)

(1 − t1 )
 
 (1 − t2 ) 
(1 − t3 )
T =  (4.13)
 
(1 − t4 )
 

 . . 

c0 = (π1 , π2 , π3 , . . .)T / (1 − π0 ) (4.14)

ci = PTci−1 , i > 0. (4.15)

Now, c0 contains probabilities of number of users transmitting pilot signals at the

first pilot slot for a specific ue, i.e. c0 = Pr {i users present upon arrival}. Indices
of ck and t are starting on 1 since at least one user (the one in question) is present
on arrival. It is easily seen that Pr {D = 0} = ∞
i=1 c0 ti = c0 · t is the probability
of being served on the first transmission of a pilot.
The vector Tc0 then contains probabilities of not have been served a dedicated
sip2 given the number of users present upon arrival, i.e.
(Tc0 )(i) = Pr {Has to retry | i users present upon arrival} . (4.16)
By multiplying this with the state transitioning matrix, we now get
c1 = Pr {i users present at next pilot slot | Has to retry} , (4.17)
which essentially has the same interpretation as c0 , with the only difference being
4.3 System Model 33

that this is the user’s second pilot transmission. Thus, by recursively applying the
above argumentation we can obtain
Pr {D = d} = cd · t (4.18)

To be able to compute values of (4.10) and (4.18) with finite number of operations
it is necessary to limit the state space of the Markov chain to a maximum state
SN . This is a valid approximation if it can be argued that πi ≈ 0 for i > N , since
the Markov chain then almost never will be in those states that are removed. It
is also intuitive that it should be negative for the system to be in a state with a
too large number of users transmitting pilots. In this thesis, we chose to limit the
state space to the states S0 , S1 , . . . , S99 . This was deemed sufficiently large as sets
of parameters that entailed that πi 0 0 for some i > 25 were not performing very
well as compared to those that were more limited in their state space.
The only thing that needs to be specified in order to get values of P and ti is how
users are served dedicated sip2 . For this we consider a set of cases defined below.
Case 1: Always Serve All Users

The most simple case to consider is a case when all users that transmit a pilot
signal are served a dedicated sip2 . Some different possible realisations have been
identified that motivates this assumption:
(a) A system which does not do any beamforming, but broadcasts the dedicated
sip2 after a pilot slot where at least one pilot signal was received.
(b) If the system has a large amount of possible orthogonal pilot signals to
choose from, then the probability of ues choosing the same pilot is small.
If this probability is small enough, then we can approximate it with 0, thus
we make the assumption that ues never chooses the same pilot signal as
others. This is also the case if we use alternative 3 in Section 4.2.3, which
makes it possible for the bs to assign pilot signals to ues in a coordinated
In this case, the transition matrix of the Markov chain degenerates to a matrix
in which all the columns are (a0 , a1 , a2 , . . .)T . We can show by Foster’s criterion
(4.9) that this chain always has a stationary distribution for finite λ by letting
v (Sk ) = k and Γ = {S0 , . . . , SM } for M being the smallest integer larger than λ,
thus Γ is finite. Then for s ∈ Γ we have
E {v (X1 ) |X0 = s} = iai = λ < ∞ (4.19)
and for s < Γ

E {v (X1 ) − v (X0 ) |X0 = sk } = (i − k) ai = λ − k ≤ λ − M < 0. (4.20)

Thus this case is ’well-behaved’ so that it is reasonable to work with. Furthermore,

34 4 System Information Distribution Methods

for this case it holds that ti = 1, ∀i.

Case 2: Single Served User
In a more complex case, the bs is modelled to be able to serve at most one trans-
mitting ue, sending a dedicated sip2 to it. All ues are assumed to be served with
the same probability, and the bs always serves a ue if there is at least one ue
transmitting a pilot. For simplicity, all ues will constantly retry in all subsequent
pilot slots until a dedicated sip2 is received.
This case is valid if, again, all ues uses different pilot signals. Then this is a
limitation of the bss capabilities, and is mainly used to show how latency might
be affected by a system which can not handle all users at once.
With this model, the transition matrix of the Markov chain is
a0 a0 0 0 0 · · ·
 
a1 a1 a0 0 0 · · ·
a2 a2 a1 a0 0 · · ·
P =   (4.21)
a3 a3 a2 a1 a0
 . . . . . . . . . 
. . . . .

We can again show by Foster’s criterion (4.9) that this chain has a stationary dis-
tribution under the condition that λ < 1 by letting v be the same function as in
the previous case, and Γ = {S0 }. Then for s ∈ Γ we have

E {v (X1 ) |X0 = s} = iai = λ < ∞, (4.22)
and for s < Γ

E {v (X1 ) − v (X0 ) |X0 = s} = (i − 1) ai = λ − 1 < 0. (4.23)

This case is also ’well-behaved’ and properties of it can be calculated with π and
the fact that ti = 1/i, as all transmitting ues have the same probability of being
served. Observe that we require λ < 1 for this case.
Case 3: K User Groups
In the third and final case, we consider a scenario where the set of pilot signals
are split into K groups, each representing that the received sinr from the bs
broadcast is within some interval. These intervals are chosen such that given that
a user cannot decode the broadcast sip2 , it has equal probability of being required
to send a pilot from each group. The bs is in this case assumed to be able to serve
at most one user per group, and it always serves at least one user for every group
in which there is sent a pilot.
Since users that belong to different groups do not interfere with one another, just
with the users that belong to the same group, this can be modelled as each user
4.4 Performance Metrics 35

group has a Markov chain with the same properties as for Case 2. The only
difference is that the user arrival rate to each Markov chain is scaled by K, i.e.
λ = Ru (1 − pc ) T3 /K. The K Markov chains are all equal and independent of each
other, so from a ue’s perspective, this scenario is the exact same as Case 2 with a
smaller λ. Thus the expressions in (4.10) and (4.18) are still applicable.

4.3.4 Reference Model

The model that is used for the reference method described in Section 4.1 is mainly
the same as described in the sections above. The bs is assumed to have a single
antenna capable of broadcasting and users arrive according to the same Poisson
process A (t). For simplicity of comparison, the si for the reference approach
is also split into sip1 and sip2 with broadcasting intervals T1 = 50 ms and T2
(variable) respectively, and also with the sizes N1 and N2 according to Table 4.1,
but both with full coverage pf .

The latency model is the same as before, but results in the simpler expressions

T +T
E {L} = 1 2 2 ,

L = U1 + U2 =⇒  (4.24)
Pr {L ≤ l} = Pr {U1 + U2 ≤ l} .

4.4 Performance Metrics

To compare the two different distribution methods, and also different sets of pa-
rameters, two metrics have been chosen. These are bandwidth allocation and
latency, and are chosen to fit the problem formulation.

4.4.1 Bandwidth

To measure bandwidth needed for a system’s si distribution, it has been assumed

that the bs always can use optimal link adaption, i.e. that for a given sinr, the
maximum spectral efficiency for the channel is achieved. The bandwidth is then
acquired with Shannon’s famous formula for non-fading channels with additive
white Gaussian noise
C = B log2 (1 + sinr) , (4.25)
which for a given rate of a signal and sinr gives a minimum value of the band-
width needed. Observe that this corresponds to the amount of time-frequency
resources needed per second, which relates more closely to the time frequency
grid shown in Figure 2.4.

Consider a scenario where the users’ sinr is a random variable distributed with
probability density function fG (g) and respective cdf FG (g). The probability dis-
tribution arises from that different users are located differently, and thus have a
different sinr on the large-scale. Then the reference method will need a band-
36 4 System Information Distribution Methods

width of
N1 /T1 N2 /T2
Br =    +    . (4.26)
−1 −1
log2 1 + FG 1 − pf log2 1 + FG 1 − pf
The first term is the bandwidth required for sip1 and the second term is the band-
width for sip2 . The terms are both derived from (4.25), with sinr such that pf of
the users have a larger sinr, thus they are able to decode the transmission.

The bandwidth needed for the new method is

N1 /T1 + N3 /T3 N2 /T2
Bn =    +   + Bded , (4.27)
−1 −1
log2 1 + FG 1 − pf log2 1 + FG (1 − pc )
where the first two terms has the same interpretations as the terms in (4.26), and
Bded is the bandwidth needed for transmissions of dedicated sip2 . This last band-
width is dependent on which pilot model from Section 4.3.3 is being used.

Case 1: Always Serve All Users

In the first case we had two different realisations, which both gives a different ex-
pression of Bded . For realisation (a), where we broadcast the sip2 after a detected
pilot signal, we get
N2 (1 − π0 ) /T3
Bded =    , (4.28)
log2 1 + FG 1 − pf
since we make a broadcast each T3 seconds with probability (1 − π0 ).

For the realisation in (b) where the bs allocates the pilot signal to the ues in an
initial handshake, we instead will use
−1 (1−p )
FG c
∞ Z
X N2 /T3
Bded = πd   fmin{H (1) ,...,H (d) } (h) dh, (4.29)
d=1 log2 1 + 30d h
FG (1−pf )
where H is a random variable of user sinr given that the user needs a dedicated
sip2 , and fmin{H (1) ,...,H (d) } (h) is the probability distribution of the minimum of d
samples from H. This expression reflects that for each pilot slot, we transmit a
dedicated sip2 to d ≥ 1 users with probability πd , and that the bs link adapt to
the worst user. We are also assuming a static beamforming gain of 30 ≈ 15 dB,
which is split with the current number of users according to how sinr scales with
mrt described in Section 3.2.1. This gain is a perfect gain for 30 antennas, but
imperfect for the assumed number of 100 antennas which accounts for non-ideal

This is a crude approximation and simplification, but is suffices as a simple first

4.4 Performance Metrics 37

Case 2: Single Served User

For the second case, it holds that
FG−1 (1−p ) 
Z c Z∞

Ru N2
Bded = f (m) dm  fG (g) dg, (4.30)
 
 log (1 + gm) M|G=g
−1 1−p
FG ( f) 0

where fM|G=g (m) is the conditional probability density function of the beamform-
ing sinr gain experienced by a user with broadcasting sinr of g. This expression
is an integral over all users that need a dedicated sip2 and their possible beam-
forming gains, since all users will eventually be served individually. It assumes
that the bs is able to link adapt perfectly to the beamforming channel. This as-
sumption is motivated by that the set-up for a dedicated sip2 involves communi-
cation between the ue and the bs, which then can make estimates of the channel.
Case 3: K User Groups
This case has not been considered in this thesis, and no expression of Bded has
been worked out.

4.4.2 Latency
It is obvious that to minimize the bandwidth needed for si distribution, we would
like to have exceedingly large T2 and T3 . This is from a user perspective not
wanted due to the latency that will be experienced. Therefore we use latency as
the second important metric of a system. Latency can however be measured in
different ways, of which two are used in this thesis.
The first and most intuitive way of measuring latency is to take the mean latency
experienced by a large number of ues, which tends to the expected values given
by (4.3), (4.4) and (4.24) when the number of users grows towards infinity. This
metric considers all users’ experiences.
The second metric is to take a certain percentile’s latency, i.e. if we look at the
95th percentile latency, it is the minimum latency that at least 95 % of the ues lies
within. This metric gives a guarantee of that with some probability, a user will at
most experience a certain latency. Observe that this metric does not include the
latencies of the rest of the users at all. This metric can be calculated with (4.5),
(4.6) and (4.24).

The results of this thesis are generated by the models of the system described in
Section 4.3 together with simulations. The simulations were performed in a state
of the art Ericsson-internal simulator. The collected data was then post-processed
and analysed in MATLAB.
This chapter presents the set up of the simulator, and what data was collected.

5.1 SINR Simulations

The first simulations that were performed was aimed at collecting statistics of ues
downlink sinr during broadcasting in the two scenarios Single Cell and Multiple
Cell, see Section 3.1.1 and 3.1.2.

5.1.1 Single Cell

The very first simulation that was performed was a simulation of the sinr that
users experience in a Single Cell scenario. The simulator was set up to run a tdd
lte network with 7 bss, each serving 3 hexagonal cells as in Figure 5.1. The grid
supports wrap-around, i.e. the network looks the same from a ue perspective
regardless of whether it is placed at the center or the edge of the grid in the
figure. In this grid, 1000 users were placed at random with uniform distribution
over all points at least 35 meters distance from all bss, and communicates with
full buffer traffic with the network. All users were stationary and their downlink
sinr was recorded during a period of 4 s, starting from simulation second 1,
to alleviate the effect of possible transients. The channel and bs antenna model
used by the simulation is a 3D spatial channel model for an urban macro scenario,
standardized by 3gpp [21]. This channel model contains both users that have los

40 5 Simulation

Figure 5.1: Hexagonal grid deployment used in Single Cell simulations.

and users that don’t, as well as users located both outdoors and indoors. The bss
each have 1 antenna per cell. Other parameters that influence the simulation are
summed up in Table 5.1.

This simulation was repeated 10 times to get a total of 10000 observations. Since
the data that is collected is the downlink sinr in a tdd system, the users do
not get any interference from other users, only from other bss. Thus it does not
matter how many users that are in each simulation.

5.1.2 Multiple Cell

The downlink sinr was also simulated in a Multiple Cell scenario. The set up
of this simulation was almost the same as in the Single Case scenario, but with a
larger hexagonal grid for the users to be placed in, according to Figure 5.2. The
reason for increasing the size of the grid is that the approximation used for sinr
calculation in this scenario, as described in Section 3.1.2, only considers signals
from far away bss as interference. In a small grid, the ues will almost always be
positioned such that all bss in the grid will count towards useful signal energy.
A larger grid thus makes the situation closer resemble the reality, to get realistic
data. This simulation used the values from Table 5.1 except that the number of
bss and cells were 37 and 111 respectively. And just as before, the simulation was
repeated 10 times with 1000 users each time.
5.1 SINR Simulations 41

Table 5.1: Parameters used for the sinr simulations.

Parameter Value
Number of simulations 10
Number of users per simulation 1000
Number of bss 7
Number of cells 21
Inter-Site Distance 500 m
Carrier frequency 2 GHz
Carrier bandwidth 5 MHz
bs maximum transmit power 20 W
Simulation time 5s
Start of data logging 1s
ue antenna Isotropic
Minimum distance from bss 35 m

Figure 5.2: Hexagonal grid deployment used in Multiple Cell simulations.

42 5 Simulation

5.2 Beamforming Gain Simulations

The second data that had to be simulated was the possible sinr gain that users
perceive when the bss have the ability to beamform signals with a large number
of antennas.
Once again, the deployment from Section 5.1.1 was set up with a small modifi-
cation. In this simulation, each bs was configured to have 100 antennas per cell.
The bss then alternated between using two different precoding matrices for the
transmissions. The first precoder was a matrix which made the entire signal en-
ergy being only transmitted on one single antenna, all other antennas were silent,
thus reproducing the Single Cell case but with a so called virtual antenna instead.
The second precoder that was used was a mrt precoder as given in (3.6) based on
channel estimates, this provides a simulation of beamforming.
The sinr was recorded for four different combinations of the two precoder op-
tions; for each user, the bs was making one transmission with each precoder in
the two interference environments. These environments was produced by all
other transmissions from all bss, using either beamforming precoders or a sin-
gle broadcast antenna. This gives us data for sinr produced during broadcast
and beamforming, and we can compare the interfering environments to see if it
matters if the other bs are broadcasting or beamforming simultaneously.

In this chapter, we present all the results that the thesis has produced.

6.1 Simulation Results

First, we present the data that is collected from the simulations that all other
results build upon.

6.1.1 SINR Simulations

The first simulation from Section 5.1.1 gave a distribution of the users’ downlink
sinr in a Single Cell broadcasting scenario, which is shown in Figure 6.1. In
Figure 6.1a the entire cdf is presented, and in Figure 6.1b a zoomed-in version
of the tail of the cdf is visible together with some lines that shows the shape of
this tail. The dashed vertical line is placed where the cdf first deviates from 0,
i.e. there is no user that experienced an sinr below that value. The dotted lines
shows the sinr at some percentiles. These values are also available in Table 6.1
where it is easy to see that just by lowering the coverage requirement from pf to
99 % produces a sinr gain of about 8 dB. As one lowers the coverage require-
ment further one can see that the gain increases, but at a lower rate than in the

The corresponding cdf and data for the Multiple Cell scenario can be found
in Figure 6.2 and Table 6.2. Although the sinr is significantly larger for this
scenario, we can see the same characteristics in this cdf, i.e. that it has a long thin
tail which implies that lowering the coverage requirement just by a few percent
gives a large increase in sinr.

44 6 Results





-20 0 20 40 60
(a) Full plot of the empirical cdf.







-20 -15 -10 -5 0 5 10
(b) Closer look at the empirical cdf.

Figure 6.1: Empirical cdf of downlink sinr in the Single Cell scenario.
6.1 Simulation Results 45

Table 6.1: Values of the Single Cell sinr for some percentiles.

Percentile sinr [dB]

1 − pf = 0.01% −12.944
1% −4.985
5% −0.980
10 % 0.983
25 % 4.544
50 % 9.543





0 20 40 60
Figure 6.2: Empirical cdf of downlink sinr in the Multiple Cell scenario.

Table 6.2: Values of the Multiple Cell sinr for some percentiles.

Percentile sinr [dB]

1 − pf = 0.01% −3.236
1% 3.742
5% 7.525
10 % 9.852
25 % 14.630
50 % 21.415
46 6 Results

1 Broadcast SINR, broadcast interference

Beamformed SINR, broadcast interference
Broadcast SINR, beamformed interference
0.8 Beamformed SINR, beamformed interference




-20 0 20 40 60
Figure 6.3: cdfs of sinr for broadcast and beamforming transmissions in
two different interference environments.

6.1.2 Beamforming Gain Simulations

The results presented in Section 6.1.1 shows the characteristics of broadcasting
sinrs. The next generation mobile networks will as stated be able to beamform
signals with a large number of bs antennas. The simulations of the beamform-
ing gain also produced a set of data points that shows some characteristics of a
beamforming network.
The first thing that we wanted to look at is how the interference environment
affects the sinr during both broadcasting and beamforming. Therefore we have
plotted the cdf of sinr for all four combinations described in Section 5.2, which
are presented in Figure 6.3. As one can see, there is not a large difference be-
tween the two interference environments. The curves where the interference is
beamformed lies about 0 to 0.5 dB to the right of the others. The fact that the
interference environment does not have a large impact on the results holds for
other characteristics as well, therefore we will only use the data from the broad-
cast interference from this point on.
We can note from Figure 6.3 that the cdfs for broadcast and beamformed sinr
does not have the exact same shape. By making a scatter plot of the beamforming
gain that a user gets versus the broadcast sinr for that user in Figure 6.4, we can
see that there is some correlation between the two. It is obvious that ues with
a large sinr have a higher probability of experiencing a high beamforming gain.
However, it seems that ues with low sinr can get an equally large beamforming
6.2 Method Comparison 47


Beamforming gain [dB]




-20 -10 0 10 20 30 40
Broadcast SINR [dB]
Figure 6.4: The beamforming gain is correlated in some manner with the
broadcast sinr.

gain, but that they experience a lower gain in general.

6.2 Method Comparison

In this section, we compare the two distribution methods presented in Chapter 4.
The total bandwidth required by the classical approach will be referred to as the

6.2.1 A Minimum on the Bandwidth

An important thing to note about the two methods for si distribution is that both
the classical and the new approach has a term of the bandwidth that is equal
and constant under the limitations we have put on the parameters, namely the
bandwidth that is needed for broadcasts of sip1 . This is easy to realize as the new
method does not change how the si in part 1 is treated, only part 2. This means
that no matter what parameters are chosen, there is a minimum bandwidth that
none of the methods can surpass. The resulting values of this limit for our two
simulated broadcast scenarios are presented in Table 6.3.
As we can see, there is a significant difference between the two cases, which comes
from the fact that the users with the lowest sinr are in the power-limited capacity
region, where the capacity of the channel increases almost linearly with the sinr.
The worst sinr for the two cases differ by almost one order of magnitude, and
48 6 Results

Table 6.3: The minimum limit on the bandwidth that is needed.

Scenario Minimum bandwidth [kHz]

Single Cell 27.99
Multiple Cell 3.57

Table 6.4: Parameters fixed for first simple plot of bandwidth.

Parameter Value(s)
Ru 5
pc {0.75, 0.90, 0.99}
T3 1/ ((1 − pc ) Ru )

consequently so does the bandwidth required for sip1 broadcasts. The reason
behind the large difference in sinr between the two broadcasting methods is
that the Multiple Cell broadcasting both results in increased useful signal energy
at the users, as well as decreased interference as compared to the Single Cell

Apart from the fixed size bandwidth, the classical approach only has one more
signal that requires bandwidth, and that is the broadcasts of sip2 . The proposed
approach has two further allocations; the pilot slots for possible pilot signals,
and the transmissions of sip2 upon request. We can see the impact they have on
the total bandwidth with a very simple plot in Figure 6.5. In this figure we have
calculated the bandwidth for both sub-cases of the most simple pilot model (Case
1), in which all users always get served a sip2 upon request. For this calculation
we have used Single Cell broadcasting, fixed parameters according to Table 6.4
and varied T2 . As can be seen in the table, T3 is chosen depending on pc . If we
had used a fixed T3 , then we know that almost the only difference in the resulting
bandwidth for different values on pc would be the difference in broadcast sip2
bandwidth. To make a fair comparison of different choices of coverage on the
sip2 broadcast, we choose T3 such that there will on average be one user in each
pilot slot. This also makes the assumption in the pilot model of being able to
serve all users, equally probable for all values of pc .

In Figure 6.5a we can see that the new method in this case is more efficient than
the baseline even for quite large T2 , even when using the simplest form of dis-
tributing sip2 on demand, broadcasting. When we are able to use beamforming
and link adaption as we have in Figure 6.5b we can gain even a little bit more,
and most prominently is that lower sip2 coverages perform significantly better.

In this simple case, we vary one parameter (T2 ), which leads to that only the
bandwidth required for sip2 broadcasts is varied in Figure 6.5. The other com-
ponents of the total bandwidth are constant for this case and are presented in
Table 6.5. This table shows that a very important factor to obtain a small band-
6.2 Method Comparison 49


55 75% SIP2 coverage

90% SIP2 coverage
99% SIP2 coverage
Total Bandwidth [kHz]






0 1 2 3 4 5
SIP2 interval [s]

(a) Total bandwidth for sub-case (a).


75% SIP2 coverage
90% SIP2 coverage
Total Bandwidth [kHz]

99% SIP2 coverage

50 Baseline





0 1 2 3 4 5
SIP2 interval [s]

(b) Total bandwidth for sub-case (b).

Figure 6.5: Simple bandwidth comparison using the simplest pilot model.
50 6 Results

Table 6.5: Values of constant bandwidth parts of the first simple case.

Coverage of sip2 Pilot slots [kHz] Dedicated sip2 transmissions [kHz]

(a) (b)
75% 1.73 10.95 0.11
90% 0.69 4.38 0.03
99% 0.07 0.44 0.0005

width is to not have to make transmissions with full coverage, exemplified by the
fact that for pc = 75% the bandwidth for dedicated sip2 decreases with four or-
ders of magnitude when we go from broadcasts to link adapted and beamformed

6.2.2 Latency Dependencies

In the previous section, there was a simple comparison using the most simple
model of the pilot slots and dedicated sip2 transmissions. Since that model as-
sumes that all users always gets served a sip2 when they have transmitted a pilot
signal, it is not very interesting to look at the latency experienced by the ues
when we have quite limited values of T2 and T3 . However, for the other pilot
models, a user is not always served a sip2 even if it has sent a pilot signal, then it
becomes more interesting to look at the latency. It should be obvious that if using
the same value on T2 for both the classical and the new approach, the latency will
not be the same for the two methods, as some users will have to await at least one
pilot slot in the new method.
To be able to compare the two distribution methods’ latencies, we can impose a
requirement on the latency and then minimize the bandwidth over the parame-
ters that can be varied. The latency requirement that we impose is either a limit
on the mean ((4.3), (4.4) and (4.24)), or we require that a certain percentage of the
users should have a latency below a limit ((4.5), (4.6) and (4.24)). For the classical
approach we only have one parameter to vary, T2 . To minimize the bandwidth
Br in (4.26) we clearly should maximize T2 , thus we choose the T2 that lies on
the bound of the latency requirement. For the new approach the situation is a bit
more complicated in that we have three parameters to choose, T2 , T3 and pc . But
for a fixed T3 and pc , it is clear from the bandwidth Bn (4.27) that we again should
maximize T2 by choosing it to lie on the latency bound. To find the best combi-
nation of parameters for the new method, we’ve used a non-linear optimizer in
MATLAB to minimize Bn over the two parameters T3 and pc , always choosing T2
according to above. Observe that the arrival rate of users, Ru , is not a parameter
we can vary ourselves but is a characteristic of the system.
For the results presented below, Single Cell broadcasting was assumed together
with the statistics collected in the beamforming gain simulations with broadcast
interference. Furthermore, we have chosen the more advanced pilot model Case
2, in which only one random ue of those which transmit a pilot gets served a
6.2 Method Comparison 51

dedicated sip2 beamformed to it.

In Figure 6.6, the result of this optimization is presented for a low user arrival
rate Ru = 0.5, with the latency requirement that Pr {L ≤ l} ≥ 0.95, where l is
varied. Figure 6.7 shows the same optimized results but for a large user arrival
rate Ru = 10.
In Figure 6.6a and Figure 6.7a, showing the minimized bandwidths, we can see
that the new approach outperforms the classical approach. If we put a very tight
requirement on the latency, then the gain of the new approach is very large, but
there is still some gain even when we allow large latencies. Observe that the band-
width curves are quite close to the lower limit of 27.99 kHz. The other graphs of
Figure 6.6 and Figure 6.7 show the optimized parameters, but these graphs are
not always entirely smooth. This shows that the non-linear optimizer had a bit of
trouble finding the optimal values for each case. That the bandwidth curves still
are quite smooth implies that finding the exact minimum isn’t extremely impor-
tant. One can choose sub-optimal parameters, not necessarily very close to the
optimal, and still perform very close to optimal.
One case that sticks out is for Ru = 0.5 and Pr {L ≤ 0.25} ≥ 0.95 for both scenarios,
in which the optimizer found that it was beneficial to let pc = 0 and not broadcast
sip2 at all. The fact that the scenarios have very different T2 (∞ and ≈ 0) is
irrelevant since no sip2 broadcasts are made anyway.
A problem that arises with the percentage requirement for the low user rate is
that in most cases the optimal solution is to choose parameters such that 95%
or a bit more of the users gets an acceptable latency, but the other users gets an
extremely large one. In Figure 6.8 there is an example of the resulting cdf of
latency for Early Detection with Ru = 0.5 and Pr {L ≤ 5} ≥ 0.95. Here there is
a risk of almost 4% of having a latency of at least 100 s, which is not a wanted
property of a system. In this particular case, pc was optimized to about 95%
and T3 was chosen as large as possibly allowed by the pilot model, and thus it
is easy to realize why the remaining 5% gets a large latency; they need to wait
a very long time for the pilot slot. This property, that of a fraction of the users
are experiencing a very large latency does however hold also for when Ru = 10,
although not quite as obvious.
52 6 Results

60 1

Normal Detection
Total Bandwidth [kHz]

50 Early Detection 0.7


SIP 2 coverage
Lower limit 0.6
40 Normal Detection
Early Detection
35 0.3


25 0
0 5 10 15 20 0 5 10 15 20
95th percentile latency [s] 95th percentile latency [s]

(a) Total bandwidth for all scenarios. (b) The optimized value of pc .

20 60


SIP 2 interval [s]

Pilot interval [s]


10 30

Normal Detection
Early Detection 10 Normal Detection
2 Early Detection

0 0
0 5 10 15 20 0 5 10 15 20
95th percentile latency [s] 95th percentile latency [s]

(c) The optimized value of T2 . (d) The optimized value of T3 .

Figure 6.6: Minimized bandwidth and corresponding parameters when

Ru = 0.5, with the requirement that Pr {L ≤ l} ≥ 0.95.
6.2 Method Comparison 53

60 1

Normal Detection
Total Bandwidth [kHz]

Early Detection 0.985

SIP 2 coverage
45 Lower limit

35 0.965
Normal Detection
0.96 Early Detection

25 0.95
0 5 10 15 20 0 5 10 15 20
95th percentile latency [s] 95th percentile latency [s]

(a) Total bandwidth for all scenarios. (b) The optimized value of pc .

25 30

Normal Detection 25 Normal Detection

Early Detection Early Detection
SIP 2 interval [s]

Pilot interval [s]





0 0
0 5 10 15 20 0 5 10 15 20
95th percentile latency [s] 95th percentile latency [s]

(c) The optimized value of T2 . (d) The optimized value of T3 .

Figure 6.7: Minimized bandwidth and corresponding parameters when

Ru = 10, with the requirement that Pr {L ≤ l} ≥ 0.95.
54 6 Results





0 20 40 60 80 100
Latency [s]

Figure 6.8: Example of a resulting cdf of latency when imposing a require-

ment of Pr {L ≤ 5} ≥ 0.95, in this figure for the Early Detection scenario with
Ru = 0.5.
6.2 Method Comparison 55

As shown, placing a requirement that states that a part of the users should have
limited latency might result in system properties that only considers that part
of the users, ignoring what happens to the others. It can then make sense to
consider a latency requirement that concerns the latency of all users, namely the
average latency. In Figure 6.9 and Figure 6.10 we have the same plots as before,
but with a requirement on the mean latency. The limit is chosen to be lower than
the limit of the percentage, since the mean latency should be lower than the 95th
percentile latency. The two figures uses the same values of Ru as before, one low
and one large.
These cases are very similar to when the percentage requirement was used in that
the new approach requires less total bandwidth than the classical approach, there
are some properties that hold under both the mean and the percentage require-
ment. In almost all cases the Early Detection scenario performs marginally better
than the Normal Detection, but that is barely visible in the graphs. Also common
for all cases is that the optimal coverage of sip2 seems to mostly be 90-99.5%. Fi-
nally, it seems that the new method approaches the lower limit a little bit faster
if Ru is low, implying that it performs a little bit better during lower user loads,
although the difference is small.
The reason to have a requirement on the mean latency was to avoid the prop-
erty that a part of the users had an extremely high latency. This is somewhat
improved by the mean requirement, but the cdf (not shown) again has a “knee”
as in Figure 6.8. The knee is however not nearly as sharp as in this figure, and it
is placed at a higher position, meaning that less users are affected and with much
less grave consequences.
Another solution to many users having too large latency could have been to in-
crease the percentage that should have a low latency. While not being presented
here, it is worth mentioning that we get similar result if putting the requirement
Pr {L ≤ l} ≥ 0.999.
56 6 Results

60 1

Normal Detection 0.8
Early Detection
Total Bandwidth [kHz]


SIP 2 coverage
Lower limit 0.6

40 Normal Detection
Early Detection

25 0
0 2 4 6 8 10 0 2 4 6 8 10
Mean latency [s] Mean latency [s]

(a) Total bandwidth for all scenarios. (b) The optimized value of pc .

18 45

16 40
Normal Detection Normal Detection
14 Early Detection 35 Early Detection

12 30
SIP 2 interval [s]

Pilot interval [s]

10 25

8 20

6 15

4 10

2 5

0 0
0 2 4 6 8 10 0 2 4 6 8 10
Mean latency [s] Mean latency [s]

(c) The optimized value of T2 . (d) The optimized value of T3 .

Figure 6.9: Minimized bandwidth and corresponding parameters when

Ru = 0.5, with the requirement that E {L} ≤ l.
6.2 Method Comparison 57

60 1

Normal Detection
Early Detection
Total Bandwidth [kHz]

Baseline 0.98

SIP 2 coverage
Lower limit

0.96 Normal Detection

35 Early Detection

25 0.94
0 2 4 6 8 10 0 2 4 6 8 10
Mean latency [s] Mean latency [s]

(a) Total bandwidth for all scenarios. (b) The optimized value of pc .

20 25

Normal Detection
Early Detection 20
Normal Detection
15 Early Detection
SIP 2 interval [s]

Pilot interval [s]





0 0
0 2 4 6 8 10 0 2 4 6 8 10
Mean latency [s] Mean latency [s]

(c) The optimized value of T2 . (d) The optimized value of T3 .

Figure 6.10: Minimized bandwidth and corresponding parameters when

Ru = 10, with the requirement that E {L} ≤ l.
58 6 Results

As all results in this section so far have been generated with the data from the
Single Cell broadcasting, it is also interesting to look at similar graphs using the
Multiple Cell sinr statistics. Unfortunately there has been no collection of data
of the beamforming gain that can be achieved compared to the broadcast sinr in
Multiple Cell, due to simulation limitations. We therefore assume together with
pilot Case 2 that all users experience exactly zero gain from beamforming. This
should therefore be seen as an underestimate, since beamforming increases the
sinr in general. This can equivalently be seen as that the dedicated sip2 are also
sent via Multiple Cell broadcasting but link adapted to the user being served,
and only decoded by that user. This assumption should lead to an overestimate
of the bandwidth needed for the new distribution method, but it still produces
the graph in Figure 6.11 for the mean requirement. It seems excessive to present
the resulting parameters and more cases, since the result is very similar to the
Singe Cell results, but with a lower total bandwidth. This figure is intended to
show that the results above hold also for the Multiple Cell case.

7.5 Normal Detection

7 Early Detection
Total Bandwidth [kHz]

6.5 Lower limit



0 2 4 6 8 10
Mean latency [s]

Figure 6.11: Minimized bandwidth for Multiple Cell when Ru = 10, with
the requirement that E {L} ≤ l.
This is the final chapter of the thesis, which discusses the thesis and its results,
both in detail and with a wider perspective. In the last section we present our
answers to the questions stated in Section 1.2.

7.1 Results
The results presented in Chapter 6 shows that the new approach of si distribution
provides a reduction of time-frequency resources needed as compared to only
broadcasting, with the system model that is used. The reason as to why it is
possible to distribute the same information with less resources originates in the
fact that broadcasting with full coverage is very expensive. As can be seen by the
simple comparison in Figure 6.5 there is a very large difference between having
to broadcast the requested sip2 and being able to adapt the transmission of each
sip2 to the users that should receive it.
The new approach exploits this by only broadcasting part of the si with full cov-
erage and the rest of the information is broadcast only to users with favourable
channels, and on demand to the rest. The gain of the new approach is that the
lower coverage on the sip2 broadcasts makes it possible to adapt the transmission
to a better channel. It shows that this gain is larger than the cost of adding allo-
cation of pilot slots for sip2 requests and dedicated sip2 transmissions. That the
gain is larger than the cost is, of course, dependent on the sizes N2 and N3 , but
they are chosen to reflect the expectation that can be put on a real system.
We analysed two different variations of the new approach, regarding how ues
determine whether they need to send a pilot signal to request a dedicated sip2 .
In almost none of the cases presented in Chapter 6 there is any visible difference

60 7 Conclusion

between the two different detections. It is only stated that the Early Detection
performs a little bit better in a majority of the cases. One would expect that
Early Detection should always perform better than Normal Detection, since it
only gives an improvement in latency without any additional cost. Those cases
in which Normal Detection performed better thus have to be the result of the
optimizer failing to find the optimal point. In total the detection scheme does
however not constitute a major difference in time-frequency resources.

When analysing the new method in more detail, it seems that there is two differ-
ent strategies of choosing parameters that fit different cases. The most common
way in the presented results is to cover most of the ues with the sip2 broadcasts
and only have a low load on the pilot slots. The other strategy is to not broadcast
sip2 at all and let all arriving users request it. The latter strategy has only been
applied in a minority of the cases; when the user arrival rate is low, and the la-
tency requirements are high. It makes sense that it actually is optimal to do so in
this case, as the strict latency requirement results in a low T2 if pc is larger than
zero, and as stated the broadcasts can be expensive. Instead, one can elect to have
T3 small so that each user that arrives to the network can send a request within
a small time interval. The first strategy is applicable for larger user arrival rates
and/or not as high requirements on the total latency. Furthermore, it looks as the
new approach converges to the classical approach when the latency requirement

A concern that might be present is that it can seem plausible that the reason
that the new method is able to perform more efficiently is that the sinr that the
broadcasts has to be adapted to in the Single Case scenario (−12.944 dB) lies far
into the power-limited region of transmission. The channel capacity in (4.25)
then grows linearly with the sinr gain that is held from lowering the coverage
on broadcast sip2 . Figure 6.11 shows that this is not the case, but that the new
method is more efficient also for the Multiple Case scenario, when the sinr that
the broadcasts has to be adapted to is almost an order of magnitude larger. This
shows that the gain of the new method is much more dependent on the fact that
the cdfs of sinr have long and thin tails, than on the magnitude of the sinr at
the tail. The simulations performed in this thesis shows that this can be expected
to be the case for the sinr.

However, for best performance with the new si distribution method it is impor-
tant that the bs can make use of the information that the pilot transmissions sup-
plies. This is shown by Figure 6.5 where the most simple approach to dedicated
sip2 transmissions is broadcasting with full coverage. As can be seen, that incurs
a high cost that can be reduced greatly by being able to make some estimate of
the channel that the sip2 should be transmitted on. The estimate of the channel
could in practice consist of a link adaption to choose modulation and coding that
suits the channel, a beamforming precoder to direct the signal energy in space,
or most preferably both.
7.2 Method 61

7.2 Method
This thesis concerns a procedure in the not yet specified fifth generation’s mobile
telecommunication system. The simulator that was used in the thesis simulated
an lte network, and while it does support some simulations of some early realiza-
tion of 5G, it would require a considerable amount of work to be able to simulate
an arbitrary si distribution protocol. We have therefore been forced to use an
abstract model of how si distribution works in a system. The validity of the re-
sults is dependent on the validity of the models being used and the simulated
For all bandwidth calculations we have assumed that the bs is able to perform
perfect link adaption, i.e. use the full channel capacity. This is of course not the
case in reality, the link adaption will not achieve full capacity. We have then al-
ways calculated an underestimate of the actual bandwidth required, but as this is
done for both the classical and the new approach the errors should approximately
cancel each other out, and the comparison is still quite accurate.
The time-frequency allocation model that is used for the classical approach should
be very accurate, as it only consists of broadcasting with full coverage. The model
does make use of the two different system information parts which is unnecessar-
ily complicated, but it is equally valid as explained in Section 4.3.1. The corre-
sponding model for the new approach is more difficult to asses the accuracy of.
The parts of the si that are broadcast are as valid as for the classical method.
The pilot slot allocation is a representation of the overhead that is induced by
the transmission of pilot signals, the magnitude of it should be large enough to
provide useful channel estimates. The most difficult part in the model of the
new approach is the bandwidth required for the dedicated transmissions of sip2 ,
where we have three different cases:
- In Case 1(a) the bs broadcast the sip2 on demand which is perfectly func-
tional, but not efficient as shown in the results.
- Case 1(b) is assumed to be able to serve any amount of users, with link
adaption for the worst user, and beamforming that splits an imperfect gain
for 100 antennas equally on the users. This relies on the assumption that
no users will transmit the same pilot signal, which is not possible for large
amount of users, since the number of orthogonal pilot signals that can be
created is limited. This model is furthermore very simplified but since it
is only used with an aim of having only one ue per pilot slot, the model is
quite reasonable and should suffice for our purposes.
- Case 2 limits the amount of users that can be served at once to 1, selecting a
random pilot transmitting user and adapting the sip2 beamforming to that
user. That all users are chosen with the same probability might be valid
if all users choose different pilot signals, and all of those can be detected
at the bs. Due to the limitation to 1 served user per pilot slot, there will
not be much more than one user transmitting a pilot, and the probability of
62 7 Conclusion

choosing the same pilot is small.

- Case 3 was only presented from a functional point-of-view; that the avail-
able pilot signals were split into K groups, which signals the downlink re-
ception quality of the broadcasts. It was argued that this is from a latency
point-of-view equal to dividing λ, the arrival rate of users needing dedi-
cated sip2 , with K. Thus we can support total user arrival rates of a factor
K larger than in Case 2. An expression for the bandwidth required for this
was not calculated, but one might suspect that it should be similar to both
Case 1(b) and 2.

Overall, these cases contain some approximations that we consider quite well mo-
tivated, but one could always improve the model. Regarding approximations of
the Markov chains, they have actually been verified experimentally by simulating
the actual chains and comparing probability distributions with the approximated
ones. For model Case 1(b) and 2 the total bandwidth that is allocated for dedi-
cated sip2 transmissions is quite small, and thus approximations should not have
a major impact on the final results.

The latency model used calculates latency as the time from arrival to the time
of the start of successful sip2 reception. For the users in the new approach that
are not covered by the sip2 broadcasts, the final time is taken as the start of pilot
transmission. This is not completely realistic as there should be some delay be-
tween the pilot transmission and the reception of sip2 . The results presented will
be a bit altered if this delay is large, but otherwise the impact should be minor.

In total, the models that are being used are not excessively complicated for the
scope of the thesis, but they still should be accurate such as to be able to conclude
that there is a gain to be had by using the new distribution method. Furthermore
there are two different strategies for choosing the coverage of sip2 , each one opti-
mal for different settings and systems.

7.3 The Thesis in a Wider Perspective

As this thesis has shown that there is a more efficient method of distributing
system information in a system, it should be considered in the 5G development
to include a similar procedure. The system would benefit from it in that it both
opens up more resources to be used for user data, and should induce a lower
energy consumption for the si distribution part. In total this should contribute
to a network that is cheaper to run, and that could have a larger total throughput
than compared to a network that only broadcasts the si. From an environmental
point-of-view, it is of also course beneficial to minimize the energy consumption.
Since the thesis is quite theoretical, there is no ethical implications of the thesis
that has to be addressed.
7.4 Summary 63

7.4 Summary
The aim of the thesis was to propose at least one brand new method of si distribu-
tion and evaluate it. We presented two different methods, one reference method
that has been used classically, and one new. With the analysis that has been done
of these two methods, we now answer the questions posed in the problem formu-
lation in Section 1.2.
1. How can massive mimo be utilized for system information distribution?
A system that employs massive mimo can use the large antenna arrays for
system information distribution in more than one way. As stated in Sec-
tion 3.1, using a certain precoding has been shown to improve the broad-
casts. This is something that definitely should be considered for a system,
but that was not included in this thesis. We have instead shown how mas-
sive mimo can aid the distribution of si by beamforming. For the bs to
be able to make user-specific beamforming, some csi is required at the bs,
which in turn requires some initial communication between the ues and
the bs. The new approach lets some users request the sip2 in some way, and
this request can be exploited to estimate some form of csi. Without any csi
the bs would not be able to beamform other than in random directions. It
was shown in this thesis that while beamforming can be used for transmis-
sions of dedicated sip2 , which improves the efficiency, it is not vital to the
new distribution method to do so. Even when no beamforming gain was as-
sumed, the new approach could perform better than the classical approach.
However, if one has the possibility to beamform, then there is no reason
from a time-frequency resource perspective to not beamform.
2. How efficient are the proposed solutions with respect to time-frequency
The new proposed method is in this regard more efficient than the classical
method in a large range of cases. However, the total bandwidth required is
very dependent on the bandwidth required for broadcasts of sip1 , which is
the same for the two methods. As shown, there might be a very large gain in
distributing sip1 with Multiple Cell broadcasts, as it increases the downlink
sinr for all users. Another thing that could decrease this bandwidth would
be to minimize the information that is included in sip1 to make it as small
as possible. For the information that is not included in sip1 , we have shown
that it is possible to reduce the resources needed with a new protocol.
3. What drawbacks or limitations exists in the proposed solutions (e.g. latency
The explicit case of latency was dealt with in the thesis, and while the new
method induces a larger overall latency for a fixed set of parameters, the
parameters can be chosen to perform better than the classical method, with
the same latency properties. A drawback of the new method is however
that it is more complex in that it needs to be able to handle users that are
64 7 Conclusion

not covered by sip2 broadcasts. In this thesis we have always assumed the
probability of two ues transmitting the same pilot being zero. This is not
the case when there is no handshake before pilot, and even when there
is, there is a probability of a collision in the handshake instead. This is
something that a realisation has to take into account, and be able to resolve.
The random access procedure of lte shows one way of dealing with such
collisions, and something like that is thus required in the new method.

7.4.1 Future Work

This thesis is only an introductory investigation on how to design the si distri-
bution in future mobile networks. The thesis has relied on simple models that
approximate some behaviours of reality, and only investigated some variations
of one new approach. As shown, using a more intricate method should be better
than relying on the classical broadcasting method, but to incorporate this into 5G
there is more work that needs to be done. The following is a list of suggestions
for future research subjects.
• Another method for making the distribution of sip2 could be to only broad-
cast it, but still with a lower coverage than pf . ues that cannot decode a
single transmission of sip2 could then listen to several sip2 broadcasts, ef-
fectively having a repetition code on it. At some point the ue will be able to
decode the sip2 correctly. One could investigate how this method performs,
and if it maybe can be combined with the proposed approach to improve
things even more.
• As stated, implementing the proposed approach in a simulator was out of
scope for this thesis, but it is very important to do that to evaluate how it
would function in a real system. A simulation might also give insights in
other characteristics and problems with the distribution method that have
so far been overlooked. This would also require a design of how to handle
collisions between ues when sending a pilot signal, or making a handshake.
List of Figures

1.1 Illustration of massive mimo beamforming. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 2

2.1 Illustration of OFDM modulation. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6

2.2 The spectrum of an ODFM signal. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 7
2.3 Time dispersion is handled in ofdm with the insertion of a Cyclic
Prefix. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
2.4 The time-frequency grid of ofdm. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 8
2.5 The ratio of empty sub-frames at an lte bs for four different traffic
scenarios. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 10

3.1 Illustration of Single Cell broadcasting, each cell broadcasts inde-

pendently. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 15
3.2 Illustration of Multiple Cell broadcasting, all cells broadcasts syn-
chronously. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 17
3.3 Illustration of the Multiple Cell scenario approximation used to
simulate signal quality. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18
3.4 Illustration of beam sweeping, broadcasting is made in one beam
at a time. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 19

4.1 The set of system information is split into two parts. . . . . . . . . 24

4.2 Example allocation of pilot slots in a Grid of Beams. . . . . . . . . 25
4.3 Comparison of the different sip2 -request protocols. . . . . . . . . . 27
4.4 Model of the time-frequency resource allocation at the bs. . . . . . 28

5.1 Hexagonal grid deployment used in Single Cell simulations. . . . . 40

5.2 Hexagonal grid deployment used in Multiple Cell simulations. . . 41

6.1 Empirical cdf of downlink sinr in the Single Cell scenario. . . . . 44

6.2 Empirical cdf of downlink sinr in the Multiple Cell scenario. . . 45
6.3 cdfs of sinr for broadcast and beamforming transmissions in two
different interference environments. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 46
6.4 The beamforming gain is correlated in some manner with the broad-
cast sinr. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 47
6.5 Simple bandwidth comparison using the simplest pilot model. . . 49
6.6 Minimized bandwidth and corresponding parameters when Ru = 0.5,
with the requirement that Pr {L ≤ l} ≥ 0.95. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 52


6.7 Minimized bandwidth and corresponding parameters when Ru = 10,

with the requirement that Pr {L ≤ l} ≥ 0.95. . . . . . . . . . . . . . 53
6.8 Example of a resulting cdf of latency when imposing a require-
ment of Pr {L ≤ 5} ≥ 0.95, in this figure for the Early Detection
scenario with Ru = 0.5. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 54
6.9 Minimized bandwidth and corresponding parameters when Ru = 0.5,
with the requirement that E {L} ≤ l. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 56
6.10 Minimized bandwidth and corresponding parameters when Ru = 10,
with the requirement that E {L} ≤ l. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 57
6.11 Minimized bandwidth for Multiple Cell when Ru = 10, with the
requirement that E {L} ≤ l. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 58
List of Tables

4.1 The sizes of different signals are constant in this thesis. . . . . . . . 29

5.1 Parameters used for the sinr simulations. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 41

6.1 Values of the Single Cell sinr for some percentiles. . . . . . . . . . 45

6.2 Values of the Multiple Cell sinr for some percentiles. . . . . . . . 45
6.3 The minimum limit on the bandwidth that is needed. . . . . . . . 48
6.4 Parameters fixed for first simple plot of bandwidth. . . . . . . . . . 48
6.5 Values of constant bandwidth parts of the first simple case. . . . . 50


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