You are on page 1of 84

Frequency Hopping Network Implementation

and Planning

Number/Version Checked by Approved by Page


1.0.0 23 Oct 98 JRy 1(84)
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

HISTORY

Version Date Author Comments

0.0.1 21 Sep, 1998 MaSa The first draft


0.0.2 24 Sep, 1998 JRy Modifications: The whole document restructured,
Chapter 2.3: PC and DTX gains, Chapter 7.2: RXQual
distribution, Table 9: Ho Threshold Interference.
Added: Figure 5-32, Figure 5-33, Figure 7-45, Figure 7-
46, Figure 7-50, Table 10, Table 11, Table 12.
Added: History , Chapter 2.1.6, Chapter 3.6, Chapter
3.9.1, Chapter 3.9.6, Chapter 3.9.7, Chapter 3.9.8,
Chapter 5.1, Chapter 5.2, Chapter 5.6.2, Chapter 6.3,
Chapter 7.1, Chapter 7.2, Chapter 7.9.
1.0.0 23 Oct, 1998 JRy The first accepted version

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 2/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

CONTENTS
1. INTRODUCTION............................................................................................................................5
1.1 GENERAL DESCRIPTION OF FREQUENCY HOPPING.......................................................................................5
1.2 FREQUENCY HOPPING MODES.................................................................................................................6
1.3 CELL ALLOCATION................................................................................................................................8
1.4 MOBILE ALLOCATION............................................................................................................................8
1.5 HOPPING SEQUENCE NUMBER.................................................................................................................9
1.6 MOBILE ALLOCATION INDEX OFFSET.......................................................................................................9
1.7 MAIO STEP .....................................................................................................................................10
2. THEORETICAL PERFORMANCE OF FREQUENCY HOPPING........................................11
2.1 FREQUENCY DIVERSITY........................................................................................................................11
2.1.1 Coherence Bandwidth.............................................................................................................11
2.1.2 Effect of Interleaving ..............................................................................................................13
2.1.3 Cyclic vs. Random Hopping Sequences ..................................................................................14
2.1.4 Simulated Frequency Diversity Gains.....................................................................................14
2.1.5 Effect in Cell Coverage Area...................................................................................................16
2.1.6 Effect of Mobile Speed.............................................................................................................16
2.2 INTERFERENCE DIVERSITY.....................................................................................................................16
2.3 EFFECT OF POWER CONTROL AND DTX................................................................................................18
3. NOKIA’S SUPPORT FOR FREQUENCY HOPPING IN GSM...............................................20
3.1 BSS LEVEL IMPLEMENTATION..............................................................................................................20
3.2 THE 2ND GENERATION BASE STATION...................................................................................................20
3.3 TALK FAMILY BASE STATION...............................................................................................................21
3.4 PRIMESITE.........................................................................................................................................22
3.5 BASE STATION CONTROLLER................................................................................................................23
3.6 NPS/X.............................................................................................................................................23
3.7 MAXIMUM CONFIGURATIONS.................................................................................................................23
3.8 RADIO NETWORK FAULT MANAGEMENT.................................................................................................24
3.8.1 The 2nd Generation Base Station............................................................................................25
3.8.2 Talk Family Base Stations and PrimeSite...............................................................................25
3.9 RESTRICTIONS ON THE USAGE OF FH.....................................................................................................25
3.9.1 DL Power Control with BB FH...............................................................................................25
3.9.2 Downlink DTX.........................................................................................................................26
3.9.3 Extended Range Cell (DE34/DF34/DG35).............................................................................26
3.9.4 MS Speed Detection.................................................................................................................26
3.9.5 Half Rate..................................................................................................................................26
3.9.6 Frequency Sharing..................................................................................................................26
3.9.7 RTC Combiner.........................................................................................................................26
3.9.8 NPS/X......................................................................................................................................26
4. SELECTING THE RIGHT HOPPING STRATEGY.................................................................27

5. FREQUENCY PLANNING OF FREQUENCY HOPPING NETWORKS..............................29


5.1 NETWORK PLANNING PROCEDURE..........................................................................................................29
5.2 FREQUENCY PLANNING PROCEDURE WITH NPS/X...................................................................................30

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 3/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

5.3 FREQUENCY REUSE ON FREQUENCY HOPPING NETWORK...........................................................................33


5.3.1 Effective Reuse.........................................................................................................................34
5.3.2 Frequency Allocation Reuse (RF FH only).............................................................................34
5.4 LOAD ON NETWORKS UTILISING FRACTIONAL LOADING (RF FH ONLY).....................................................35
5.4.1 Frequency Load.......................................................................................................................35
5.4.2 Hard Blocking Load................................................................................................................36
5.4.3 Fractional Load.......................................................................................................................37
5.5 TRUNKING EFFECT AND EFFECTIVE REUSE..............................................................................................38
5.6 FREQUENCY ALLOCATION STRATEGIES...................................................................................................40
5.6.1 BCCH Allocation.....................................................................................................................40
5.6.2 Selecting the Effective Reuse (BB FH)....................................................................................43
5.6.3 Selecting the Frequency Allocation Reuse and the Frequency Load (RF FH).......................44
5.6.4 Frequency Sharing by Using MAIO Management (RF FH only)...........................................46
5.6.5 Frequency Sharing in the Single MA-list Scheme (RF FH only)............................................50
6. RADIO NETWORK PARAMETERS..........................................................................................52
6.1 PARAMETERS FOR MA-LIST DEFINITIONS IN BSC...................................................................................52
6.2 BTS LEVEL FH RELATED PARAMETERS................................................................................................54
6.3 POWER CONTROL................................................................................................................................56
6.4 HANDOVER.........................................................................................................................................58
6.5 DTX................................................................................................................................................59
6.5.1 Uplink DTX..............................................................................................................................59
6.5.2 Downlink DTX.........................................................................................................................59
7. OPTIMISATION............................................................................................................................60
7.1 TOOLS FOR NETWORK MONITORING.......................................................................................................60
7.2 KPIS FOR HOPPING NETWORK..............................................................................................................60
7.3 RXQUAL IN FH NETWORKS.............................................................................................................61
7.4 IDLE CHANNEL INTERFERENCE MEASUREMENT........................................................................................69
7.5 CYCLIC AND RANDOM HOPPING SEQUENCES...........................................................................................70
7.6 INTRACELL HANDOVER.........................................................................................................................73
7.7 POWER CONTROL................................................................................................................................73
7.7.1 Downlink Power Control with BB Hopping............................................................................73
7.8 HANDOVER CONTROL..........................................................................................................................73
7.9 HSN PLANNING WITH RANDOM HOPPING..............................................................................................74
8. PLANNING CASES.......................................................................................................................75
8.1 PLANNING CASE 1: SINGLE MA-LIST....................................................................................................75
8.1.1 Frequency Planning................................................................................................................75
8.1.2 MAIO Planning.......................................................................................................................76
8.2 PLANNING CASE 2: RF FH WITH FRACTIONAL LOADING (FAR 3 – 5).....................................................79
8.2.1 Defining the Frequency Band and the Number of Frequencies Needed in Each Cell............79
8.2.2 Frequency Allocation and Analysis.........................................................................................81
8.3 PLANNING CASE 3: RF FH WITH FREQUENCY SHARING...........................................................................82
8.3.1 Frequency Planning................................................................................................................82
8.3.2 MAIO Planning.......................................................................................................................83
8.3.3 Analysis....................................................................................................................................84

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 4/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

1. INTRODUCTION
The purpose of this document is to explain the theory behind the frequency hopping (FH), how the
frequency hopping is implemented in Nokia’s network elements, how to choose the right frequency
hopping strategy, parameters related to FH, frequency allocation procedure, how to analyse the
quality of the network and the optimisation process. Also some practical planning examples are
presented.

Frequency hopping is one of the standardised capacity enhancement features in GSM system. It
offers a significant capacity gain without any costly infrastructure requirements. It is also compatible
with all the existing GSM mobile phones, since the frequency hopping support has been required by
the GSM specifications from the beginning. Frequency hopping can co-exist with most of the other
capacity enhancement features and in many cases it significantly boosts the effect of those features.
All these factors make frequency hopping a very tempting capacity enhancement solution.

Half-Rate Dual-Band-/ Antennas Down PC DTX FH


Networks Dual-Mode- Ant. Downtilting Smart Antennas
Networks Micro-Cell IUO
Pico-Cell / Indoor IFH

Channel-Bandwidth Spectrum Cell Size Reuse-Factor (C/I)

Effective Network Planning

CAPACITY GAIN

Figure 1-1. Solutions to enhance network capacity.

1.1 General Description of Frequency Hopping

Frequency hopping can be briefly defined as a sequential change of carrier frequency on the radio
link between the mobile and the base station.

In GSM, one carrier frequency is divided into eight time slots. Each time slot provides one physical
channel, which can be assigned to one link between a mobile and a base station. The communication
between the mobile and the base station occurs in bursts inside the assigned time slot. Each burst
lasts about 577 µ s. When frequency hopping is used, the carrier frequency may be changed between
each consecutive TDMA frame. This means that for each connection the change of the frequency
may happen between every burst. This is called Slow Frequency Hopping (SFH), because more than
one bit is transmitted using the same frequency. In Fast Frequency Hopping (FFH), the carrier
frequency is allowed to change more than once during a bit duration, but this is not implemented in
GSM.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 5/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

At first, the frequency hopping was used in military applications in order to improve the secrecy and
to make the system more robust against jamming. In cellular network, the frequency hopping also
provides some additional benefits such as frequency diversity and interference diversity. The basic
principle of frequency hopping is presented in Figure 1-2.

Call is transmitted through several


Frequency frequencies in order to
• average the interference (interference diversity)
• minimise the impact of fading (frequency diversity)

F1

F2

F3

Time

Figure 1-2. Basic functionality of frequency hopping.

1.2 Frequency Hopping Modes

The requirement that the BCCH TRX must transmit continuously in all the time slots sets strict
limitations on how the frequency hopping can be realised in a cell. The current solutions are
Baseband Frequency Hopping (BB FH) and Synthesised Frequency Hopping (RF FH).

In the baseband frequency hopping the TRXs operate at fixed frequencies. Frequency hopping is
generated by switching consecutive bursts in each time slot through different TRXs according to the
assigned hopping sequence. The number of frequencies to hop over is determined by the number of
TRXs. Because the first time slot of the BCCH TRX is not allowed to hop, it must be excluded from
the hopping sequence. This leads to three different hopping groups. The first group doesn’t hop and it
includes only the BCCH time slot. The second group consists of the first time slots of the non-BCCH
TRXs. The third group includes time slots one through seven from every TRX. This is illustrated in
Figure 1-3.

RTSL 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
TRX-1 B f1 B = BCCH timeslot. It does not hop.

TRX-2 f2 Time slots 1...7 of all TRXs


hop over (f1,f2,f3,f4).
TRX-3 f3
HSN2
TRX-4 f4
HSN1
Time slot 0 of TRX-2,-3,-4 hop over f2,f3,f4.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 6/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Figure 1-3. Baseband hopping (BB FH).

In the synthesised frequency hopping all the TRXs except the BCCH TRX change their frequency
for every TDMA frame according to the hopping sequence. Thus the BCCH TRX doesn’t hop. The
number of frequencies to hop over is limited to 63, which is the maximum number of frequencies in
the Mobile Allocation (MA) list covered in Section 1.4. Synthesised hopping is illustrated in Figure
1-4.

TRX-1 B B = BCCH timeslot. TRX does not hop.

Non-BCCH TRXs are hopping over


f1, f1, the MA-list (f1,f2,f3,...,fn) attached to the cell.
f2, . . . . f2,
f3, f3,
fn fn
TRX-2
HSN1

Figure 1-4. Synthesised hopping (RF FH).

The biggest limitation in baseband hopping is that the number of the hopping frequencies is the same
as the number of TRXs. In synthesised hopping the number of the hopping frequencies can be
anything between the number of hopping TRXs and 63. However in synthesised hopping the BCCH
TRX is left completely out of the hopping sequence. The differences between BB and RF hopping
are further illustrated in Figure 1-5.

MS does not see


TRX-1 F1(+ BCCH) any difference
BB-FH
F2
Frequency
TRX-3 F3
Dig. RF F1
F2
BSC F3
MSC
TCSM
Time

TRX-1 F1, F2, F3

RF-FH
TRX-2 BCCH
Dig. RF

BB-FH is feasible with large configurations


RF-FH is viable with smaller configurations

Figure 1-5. The difference between BB and RF FH.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 7/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

1.3 Cell Allocation

The Cell Allocation (CA) is a list of all the frequencies allocated to a cell. The CA is transmitted
regularly on the BCCH. Usually it is also included in the signaling messages that command the
mobile to start using a frequency hopping logical channel. The cell allocation may be different for
each cell.

In GSM 900 the CA list may include all the 124 available frequencies [GSM 04.08]. However, the
practical limit is 64, since the MA-list can only point to 64 frequencies that are included in the CA
list as presented in the next section. The only signaling method allowed in the GSM 900 systems to
transmit the CA list is the “bit map 0” method presented in Table 1.

Table 1. The signalling method for transmitting the CA list in GSM 900 system.
CA signaling Lowest Max. ARFCN range Max. number of
method ARFCN frequencies in the CA list
bit map 0 0 124 124*
* Practical limit is 64, because the MA-list can only point to 64 frequencies.

In GSM 1800 and GSM 1900 systems the frequency band is so large that the CA list cannot include
all the frequencies available in a system. In these systems the “bit map 0” method is not available, but
five other methods can be used [DCS 04.08] [J-STD 7]. Each of these methods has different
limitations that limit the maximum frequency range and the maximum number of frequencies. These
signaling methods together with their limitations are presented in Table 2. In Nokia implementation
the variable bit map and the 512 range signaling methods are available. The CA list is always
automatically generated and it includes the BCCH frequency and the frequencies that are defined for
the MA-list.

Table 2. Different signalling methods for transmitting the CA list in GSM 1800/1900.
CA signaling Lowest Max. ARFCN Max. number of
method ARFCN range frequencies in the CA list
1024 range 0 1024 16 (17 if ARFCN 0 is included in the CA list)
512 range selectable 512 18
256 range selectable 256 22
128 range selectable 128 29
variable bit map selectable 112 112*
* Practical limit is 64, because the MA-list can only point to 64 frequencies.

1.4 Mobile Allocation

The MA is a list of hopping frequencies transmitted to a mobile every time it is assigned to a hopping
physical channel. The MA-list is a subset of the CA list. The MA-list is automatically generated if the
baseband hopping is used. If the network utilises the RF hopping, the MA-lists have to be generated
for each cell by the network planner. The MA-list is able to point to 64 of the frequencies defined in
the CA list. However, the BCCH frequency is also included in the CA list, so the practical maximum
number of frequencies in the MA-list is 63. The frequencies in the MA-list are required to be in
increasing order because of the type of signaling used to transfer the MA-list.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 8/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

1.5 Hopping Sequence Number

The Hopping Sequence Number (HSN) indicates which hopping sequence of the 64 available is
selected. The hopping sequence determines the order in which the frequencies in the MA-list are to be
used. The HSNs 1 - 63 are pseudo random sequences used in the random hopping while the HSN 0 is
reserved for a sequential sequence used in the cyclic hopping. The hopping sequence algorithm takes
HSN and FN as an input and the output of the hopping DOCUMENTTYPE
sequence generation is a Mobile Allocation
Index (MAI) which is a number ranging from 0 to the number of frequencies in the MA-list subtracted
TypeUnitOrDepartmentHere
by one. The HSN is a cell specific parameter. For the baseband hopping two HSNs exists. The zero
time slots in a BB hopping cell use the HSN1 and TypeDateHere
TypeYourNameHere the rest of the time slots follow the HSN2 as
presented in Figure 1-3. All the time slots in RF hopping cell follow the HSN1 as presented in Figure
1-4.

1.6 Mobile Allocation Index Offset

When there is more than one TRX in the BTS using the same MA-list the Mobile Allocation Index
Offset (MAIO) is used to ensure that each TRX uses always an unique frequency. Each hopping TRX
is allocated a different MAIO. MAIO is added to MAI when the frequency to be used is determined
from the MA-list. Example of the hopping sequence generation is presented in Figure 1-6. MAIO and
HSN are transmitted to a mobile together with the MA-list. In Nokia solution the MAIOoffset is a cell
specific parameter defining the MAIOTRX for the first hopping TRX in a cell. The MAIOs for the
other hopping TRXs are automatically allocated according to the MAIOstep -parameter introduced in
the following section.

For this TDMA frame the output from the algorithm is 1

FN & HSN GSM Hopping algorithm 1

MAI(0...N-1) = 1 + MAIOTRX MAIOTRX


TRX-1 0 MAIOOFFSET ,
TRX-2 1 User definable
TRX-3 2
These parameters
MA INDEX 0 1 2 3 N-2 N-1 are set
(MAI) automatically

MA f1 f2 f3 f4 fN-1 fN

TRX-1 TRX-2 TRX-3


Figure 1-6. Example of the hopping sequence generation.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 9/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

1.7 MAIO Step

The MAIOstep is a Nokia specific parameter used in the MAIO allocation to the TRXs. The MAIO for
the first hopping TRXs in each cell is defined by the cell specific MAIOoffset parameter. MAIOs for
the other hopping TRXs are assigned by adding the MAIOstep to the MAIO of the previous hopping
TRX as presented in Equation (1.1).

MAIO TRX ( n ) = MAIO offset + MAIO step ⋅ (n −1) (1.1)


An example of the MAIO assignment is presented in Figure 1-7. More examples can be found in
Section 5.6.4.

Sector TRX # HSN MAIO stepMAIOoffsetl MAIO


1 1 Non-hopping BCCH TRX
2 7 2 0 0 +MAIO step
3 2
4 4
2 1 Non-hopping BCCH TRX
MAIO step indicates the
2 7 2 6 6
difference between the MAIOs of
3 8
successive TRXs in a cell.
4 10
3 1 Non-hopping BCCH TRX
2 7 2 12 12
3 14
4 16

Figure 1-7. Example of the use of the MAIO related parameters.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 10/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

2. THEORETICAL PERFORMANCE OF FREQUENCY HOPPING


Frequency hopping is a powerful countermeasure in order to overcome the harmful effects introduced
by the propagation channel and interference. The quality gain achieved by employing frequency
hopping can be traded for capacity gain by tightening the frequency reuse in the network.

2.1 Frequency Diversity

The fast fading is a significant problem especially in the downlink direction since the mobiles do not
employ antenna diversity, which is commonly used in base stations. Fluctuations of the received
signal strength are especially harmful for the slow moving mobiles because they tend to stay in a
fading dip much longer than the faster moving mobiles. Frequency hopping causes the consecutive
bursts to be transmitted on different frequencies. If the separation between these frequencies is
sufficient, the fading characteristics of these frequencies are different.

For the fast moving mobiles, the consecutive bursts have different fading characteristics even
without frequency hopping, because the spatial movement between the consecutive bursts is
significant and the locations of the fading dips are relatively constant in most environments. Thus the
frequency diversity gain for the fast moving mobiles is not significant.

2.1.1 Coherence Bandwidth

Coherence bandwidth represents a bandwidth that is required between two frequencies in order to
ensure that their fading characteristics are different enough to provide properly uncorrelated
amplitudes and phases. The coherence bandwidth depends strongly on the mean delay spread of the
environment.

Because of the multipath scattering, the transmitted impulse signal spreads in time domain before it is
received. A typical signal delay envelope of a transmitted impulse is presented in Figure 2-8. The
parameters as defined in [Lee82] are

d m = ∫ tE (t )dt (2.1)
0


∆2 = ∫ t 2 E (t )dt − d m ,
2
(2.2)
0

where:
• dm = mean excess delay time
• t = excess delay time
• E( ) = signal power density
• ∆ = delay spread

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 11/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Delay spread
0 dB ∆

Power
E(t)
density

0 d t
Mean delay time Delay time

Figure 2-8. Typical delay envelope.

The delay spread is thus defined as the standard deviation of the mean delay time. The measurements
indicate that the delay spread is highly dependent on the environment. Typical values are presented in
Table 3 [Lee89].
Table 3. Mean delay spreads
Type of environment Delay spread ∆,
µ s
Open area < 0.2
Suburban area 0.5
Urban area 3

The coherence bandwidth is often defined as the frequency separation that yields an autocorrelation
coefficient value of 0.5 or less [Pen95]. If the propagation environment is also time dependent, the
time separation of signals has to be taken into account. The autocorrelation coefficient based on the
frequency and time separation can be written as follows [Lee82]

J 02 ( βvτ )
ρ r ( ∆ω , τ ) = , ( 2.3 )
1 + ( ∆ω ) 2 ∆2

where
• J0 ( ) = Bessel function of 0th order
• β = 2π /λ , λ = signal wavelength
• v = velocity of the mobile
• τ = time separation
• ∆ = delay spread of the environment
• ∆ ω = 2π *∆ f, ∆ f = frequency spacing

Adequate coherence bandwidth, where signal autocorrelation coefficient between bursts equals to
0.5, can be derived from Equation (2.3) assuming τ = 0 as

1
BWC ( ρ = 0.5) = . ( 2.4 )
2π ⋅ ∆

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 12/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Equation (2.4) can be fully applied only in an ideal case, and it is therefore only a theoretical model.
However, it gives an idea about how the coherence bandwidth differs in different types of
environments. In Figure 2-9 the autocorrelation coefficient has been plotted for several different
values of delay spread (∆ ) assuming τ = 0. It can be seen that in the urban environment even the
adjacent channel having separation of 200 kHz appears to be adequately uncorrelated and in the
suburban environment the channel separation of 400 kHz is adequate. In open environments the
channel separation should be at least 800 kHz corresponding to four GSM carriers.
1.0

0.9

0.8

0.7
delay
autocorrelation coefficient

spread (µs)
0.6
0.2
0.5
0.5 1
2
3
0.4

0.3

0.2

0.1

0.0
0

100

200

300

400

500

600

700

800

900

1000

1100

1200

1500
1300

frequency spacing (kHz) 1400

Figure 2-9. The autocorrelation coefficient as a function of carrier spacing.

2.1.2 Effect of Interleaving

In GSM the speech frame is transmitted over eight consecutive bursts. The fast fading causes bursty
bit errors that degrade the efficiency of the convolutional coding. The interleaving is designed to
spread these errors over longer time. However, the decoding performance is not significantly
improved if consecutive bursts are exposed to the similar radio channel. If the mobile moves fast
enough, the fading of successive bursts is uncorrelated due to spatial movement. Frequency hopping
causes consecutive bursts to be transmitted on different frequencies. If these frequencies have
sufficient separation the fading of successive bursts is uncorrelated as presented in Section 2.1.1.
Since the interleaving depth is eight, the frequency diversity gain of cyclic hopping doesn’t
significantly improve if more than eight frequencies are used in a hopping sequence.

In data calls, the interleaving length is 19. Therefore, the gain for data calls compared to speech
calls might be bigger when more than 8 frequencies are used in a hopping sequence.

The signalling channels have an interleaving depth of four. The frequency diversity gain for the
signalling channels is thus smaller.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 13/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

2.1.3 Cyclic vs. Random Hopping Sequences

Both cyclic and random hopping modes are available in GSM.


• In the cyclic mode the frequencies are changed sequentially from the lowest frequency to the
highest as defined in the MA-list.
• In random mode the frequency to be used for each burst is selected from the MA-list by a
predefined pseudo random sequence. This means that the same frequency may be used for a
couple of consecutive bursts and the frequencies are not used evenly in a short time scale.
Thus, the optimum frequency diversity gain is possible to achieve only if the cyclic hopping is
used. As the number of frequencies becomes larger the difference between the cyclic and the random
mode becomes small.

2.1.4 Simulated Frequency Diversity Gains

10

7 FLAT 3
FER = 3%

6
TU3
∆Eb/N0 (dB)

FER = 3%

5
FLAT3
RBER
Cl 1b = 0,3%
4
TU3
RBER
Cl 1b = 0,3%
3

0
No hop 2 3 4 5 6 8 Infinite
Number of carriers

Figure 2-10. Frequency diversity gain of frequency hopping link against thermal noise
compared to a non-hopping link.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 14/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

FLAT 3
6 FER = 3%

FLAT3
5 RBER
∆C/Ic (dB)

Cl 1b = 0,2%
TU3
4 FER = 3%

TU3
3 RBER
Cl 1b = 0,2%

0
No hop 2 3 4 5 6 8 Infinite
Number of carriers

Figure 2-11. Frequency diversity gain of frequency hopping link against co-channel
interference compared to a non-hopping link.

The simulations show a very significant gain for FLAT3 channel compared to the TU3 channel. This
happens because the TU3 channel includes several propagation paths having statistically independent
fading conditions and it is thus providing path diversity that helps to achieve the performance targets
even in the non-hopping case. The results of this simulation represent a best possible case, because
the fading on the used frequency channels is assumed uncorrelated and the cyclic hopping mode is
used. In real life, the frequencies are not necessarily uncorrelated as explained in Section 2.1.1 and
the random hopping is used to maximise the interference diversity gain. Also, the presented
gains are not achievable in uplink direction if a proper diversity reception (about 4 dB gain) method
is already in use at base stations.

According to the simulations, the performance of the SACCH / SDCCH and TCH for the cases of
non hopping and ideal FH as a function of C/I (according to 05.05 test conditions and TU3) are
presented in the following:

Table 4. The frequency diversity gain of the SACCH / SDCCH against TCH for the
cases of non hopping and ideal FH as a function of C/I, with 2%FER.
TCH/FS SACCH
No FH 15dB 11.5dB
FH 8dB 8dB

In the non hopping mode, the SACCH is more robust than the TCH/FS, whereas in the FH mode they
perform equal. However, in a high interference situation the SACCH channel might perform worse
than TCH channel.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 15/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

2.1.5 Effect in Cell Coverage Area

In coverage limited cells the frequency hopping may increase the cell coverage area because of
the frequency diversity gain, but since the BCCH time slot doesn’t hop, the increased coverage area
is relevant only for the ongoing calls that have been successfully established and are allocated a
hopping TCH. According to the simulations, see Table 4, the non-hopping signalling channel (BCCH
/ SDCCH) has a better performance than a non-hopping TCH but a worse performance than a
hopping TCH channel. Therefore, the cell coverage area could be increased, but not according to
the full FH gain, but by considering the performance of the BCCH time slot.

In RF FH case, the whole BCCH carrier is non-hopping. Thus, the frequency diversity gain should
be considered as a quality gain in the cell border area rather than the gain increasing the cell service
area.

2.1.6 Effect of Mobile Speed

As mentioned earlier, the frequency diversity gain for the fast moving mobiles is not significant. The
movement as itself causes the same gain which is lost from the frequency diversity gain. Therefore,
the fast moving mobiles get the same gain than the slow moving ones, the gain just comes more or
less from the moving as itself.

In GSM, the speed of Power Control (PC) is slow. When moving fast, the PC cannot follow anymore
the slow fading dips so efficiently. Therefore, the fast moving mobiles might loose in PC gain. Also
the Handover (HO) performance may be degraded with high speed.

2.2 Interference Diversity

In a conventional non-hopping network, each call is transmitted on a single fixed frequency. This
means that the interference situation in a network is also quite stable. Some calls may experience
very little interference and the other calls may be interfered severely. Severe interference can be
avoided by a handover, but the probability of finding an interference free channel decreases as the
network load increases. In a non-hopping network, the interference tends to be continuous, so that the
same interference source affects several consecutive bursts. If this interference is strong enough it
may lead to a corruption of several consecutive bursts. The error correction measures used in GSM
can not usually tolerate several corrupted bursts in a speech frame and thus these frames are likely to
be erased causing significant deterioration in speech quality.

In random hopping network, the interference sources vary from burst to burst. Thus, the
interference tends to get averaged over all the calls in the network. As a consequence, the
interference affecting each call in the network has a lower standard deviation around its mean value.
This effect is illustrated in Figure 2-12. Another advantage of random frequency hopping is that the
severely interfered bursts occur randomly. Because of this, the probability of several consecutive
corrupted bursts and erased frames decreases.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 16/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

No FH FH
30 30 f2
f1 f1
25 25
f3
Average C/I (dB)

Average C/I (dB)


20 f2 20 f2
f1
15 15 f3 Ave
f2 f1
10
f3 10
f3
5 5 DOCUMENTTYPE
0 0
TypeUnitOrDepartmentHere
Call 1 Call 2 Call 3 Call 1 Call 2 Call 3
TypeYourNameHere TypeDateHere

Figure 2-12. Interference averaging between users in a random frequency hopping network.

In order to use the available frequency spectrum efficiently, the frequencies are reused in a network.
The sufficient distance between the cells using the same frequency depends on the minimum C/I ratio
tolerated by the system, the surrounding environment and the network topology. In practice the
minimum reuse for a non-hopping macro cells is about 12. This means that the same frequency may
be used in every 12th cell. Because the interference levels for each user vary considerably, a large
interference margin has to be included to guarantee sufficient quality for each user in the network.

When the random frequency hopping is employed the deviation of interference level is decreased as
illustrated in Figure 2-12. This means that the interference margin used in the frequency planning
can be reduced allowing the usage of tighter frequency reuse as illustrated in Figure 2-13.

Field strenght

Serving carrier
worst interference
interference margin
average
strongest
interference

average
weakest
interference

no FH FH with FH with tighter


improved frequency
quality reuse

Figure 2-13. The gain of frequency hopping.


How big is the interference diversity gain is a subject for a further study.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 17/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

2.3 Effect of Power Control and DTX

Both the power control and the DTX are standard GSM features, which are designed to minimise
the interfering transmission when possible. They are both mandatory features in the mobile
terminals, but it is up to the network operator to decide whether to use them or not. DTX prevents
unnecessary transmissions when there is no need to transfer information. Power control is used to
optimise the transmitted signal strength so that the signal strength at the receiver is still adequate. The
both features can be individually activated for uplink and downlink. Operators have been widely
using both features in UL direction mainly in order to maximise the battery life in mobiles.

In a non-hopping network these features provide some quality gain for some users, but this gain
cannot be transferred effectively to increased capacity, since the maximum interference experienced
by each user is likely to remain the same. Also the power control mechanism doesn’t function
optimally because the interference sources are stable causing chain effects where the increase of
transmission power of one transmitter causes worse quality in the interfered receiver, which in turn
causes the power increase in another transmitter and so on. This means that, for example, one mobile
located in a coverage limited area may severely limit the possibility of several other transmitters to
reduce their power.

In a random hopping network the quality gain provided by both features can be efficiently
exploited to capacity gain because the gain is more equally distributed among the users. Since the
typical speech activity factor (also called DTX factor) is less than 0.5, DTX effectively cuts the
network load in half when it is used. In a soft blocking limited network this means that the DTX can
theoretically provide up to 100% capacity increase. Also, the power control works more efficiently
because each user has many interference sources. Thus, if one interferer increases its power, the
effect on the quality of the connection is not seriously affected. In fact, it is probable that some other
interferers are decreasing their powers at the same time. Thus, the system is more stable and chaining
effects mentioned earlier do not occur frequently.

The simulated gain for power control and DTX with different mobile speeds can be seen in the
following Figure 2-14.

Reuse 3/9, TU 3km/h Reuse 3/9, TU 50km/h

GAIN: GAIN:
PC on 1.4 dB PC on 1.0 dB
DTX on 2.3 dB DTX on 2.3 dB
PC on, DTX on 3.7 dB PC on, DTX on 3.5 dB

C/I improvement

Figure 2-14. The simulated gain of PC and DTX with FH.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 18/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

DTX has some effect on the RXQual distribution. Normally the BER is averaged over the duration
of one SACCH frame lasting 0.48 seconds and consisting of 104 TDMA frames. However, four of
these TDMA frames are used for measurements, so that only 100 bursts are actually transmitted and
received. When DTX is in use and there is no speech activity, only the bursts transmitting the silence
descriptor frame (SID-frame) and the SACCH are transmitted. When there are periods of no speech
activity, the BER is estimated over just the bursts carrying the silence descriptor frame and the
SACCH. This includes only 12 bursts over which the BER is averaged (sub quality). This means that
the BER gets averaged much more effectively when DTX is not used yielding to a quality
distribution where the proportion of moderate quality values is enhanced. The sub quality
distribution is wider than the full quality distribution, meaning that more good and bad quality
samples are experienced.

The differences between full and sub quality distributions are largest in frequency hopping networks
utilising low frequency allocation reuse, since in that kind of networks the interference situation
may be very different from burst to burst. A couple of severely interfered bursts may cause very bad
quality for the sub quality sample when they happen to occur in the set of 12 bursts over which the
sub quality is determined. The full quality sample of the same time period has probably only
moderate quality deterioration because of the better averaging of BER over 100 bursts. The
differences between full and sub quality distributions can be seen in Figure 2-15.

In a real network utilising DTX the quality distribution is a mixture of full and sub quality samples.
The proportions of full and sub samples depend on the speech activity factor also known as the DTX
factor. The differences in the BER averaging processes cause significant differences in the RXQUAL
distributions. These differences should be taken into account when the RXQUAL distributions of
networks utilising and not utilising DTX are compared.
1/1 reuse 15 freqs

40.00 %

35.00 %

30.00 %

25.00 %

RxQ full
20.00 %
RxQ sub

15.00 %

10.00 %

5.00 %

0.00 %
Q0 Q1 Q2 Q3 Q4 Q5 Q6 Q7

Figure 2-15. The distribution of normal RXQual and subRXQual values in a frequency
hopping network.
The limitations in the usage of DL PC and DTX can be seen in Chapters 3.9.1 and 3.9.2.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 19/84
DOCUMENTTYPE
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

TypeUnitOrDepartmentHere
TypeYourNameHere TypeDateHere
3. NOKIA’S SUPPORT FOR FREQUENCY HOPPING IN GSM
The support for frequency hopping is a standard feature of Nokia Base Station Sub-System (BSS). In
this chapter the frequency hopping support of different base station generations and the BSC are
described. Also the current and upcoming frequency hopping support of Nokia’s radio network
planning tool NPS/X is presented.

3.1 BSS Level Implementation

In GSM only the BSS is responsible of the implementation of frequency hopping. The Network Sub-
System (NSS) including the Mobile Switching Centre (MSC) is not involved in it. The Operation and
Maintenance Centre (OMC) is involved in managing the FH related parameters, but their
management in the OMC doesn’t differ from any other cell level parameter. The fault management in
the OMC of a frequency hopping network is identical to that of a non-hopping network. The primary
network elements in GSM are presented in Figure 3-16.

BSS NSS
BSC MSC
BTS Abis A
MS interface interface

BTS

OMC

Figure 3-16. The primary network elements in GSM.

3.2 The 2nd Generation Base Station

The second generation base station supports only baseband hopping. The main functional blocks in
the second generation BTS considering frequency hopping are the Frame Units (FU), the Frequency
Hopping Unit (FQHU) and the Carrier Units (CU) [Nok96]. The frame unit performs all the control
and the baseband functions for frames of up to 8 full rate or 16 half rate logical channels. Each carrier
unit contains a transmitter and two receivers. The main function of the transmitter is to convert the
digital data from the frame unit into a modulated carrier signal. The receiver is responsible for the
down conversion from the RF frequency band to baseband followed by A/D conversion and
serialising I and Q signals and sending them to the demodulation part in the corresponding frame unit
[Nok95]. The number of frame units and carrier units corresponds to the number of installed TRXs in
the BTS.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 20/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

The frequency hopping connects the frame units and the carrier units as illustrated in Figure 3-17.
The hopping function is realised by multiplexing baseband digital bit streams between the frame
units and the carrier units. The multiplexing is done according to the hopping sequence, which is
calculated in FQHU. The hopping unit is common for the BTS; all the sectors of a BTS use the same
FQHU. The FQHU can be duplicated for reliability or because of diversity reception. If the
diversity is not used, the other FQHU acts as a hot redundancy, which means that it is automatically
taken into operation if the other FQHU fails. When diversity reception is used, the other FQHU is
used for carrying the signal from the diversity receiver.

FU1 CU1

FU2 F CU2
Q
H
FU3 CU3
U

FU12 CU12

Figure 3-17. Functional units for frequency hopping in 2nd generation BTS.

The FQHU is capable of supporting a maximum of 12 hopping groups at a time. This is sufficient as
in three sector configuration the number of hopping groups used is nine (including the non-hopping
zero time slots on the BCCH carriers). Both random and cyclic hopping modes are supported but not
simultaneously, meaning that all the sectors under the same BTS must use either cyclic or random
hopping sequences. With random hopping the hopping sequence numbers (1-63) can be selected
freely for each hopping group.

The timing of sectors is derived from a common clock unit, so the different sectors are frame- and
bit-synchronised enabling the use of synchronous handovers. Consequently, the hopping sequences
are synchronised as well. The combiners used in the 2nd generation BTSs limit the minimum
channel spacing to 600 kHz!

3.3 Talk Family Base Station

The Talk family base stations are capable of both baseband hopping and RF hopping. Baseband
hopping implementation is slightly different compared to the implementation on the 2nd generation
base station. Functionality inside one TRX is divided between burst level operations (EQDSP) and
block level operations (CHDSP). The burst level operations cover all the operations done for a single
burst, such as ciphering/deciphering, equalisation, bit detection, diversity combining etc. The block
level operations deal with blocks of information, such as a speech block or a signaling block. These
operations include interleaving/deinterleaving, block coding/decoding etc. The baseband hopping
interface resides between this logical division.

FHDSP is a digital signal processor dedicated to controlling the frequency hopping operation. In
baseband hopping the FHDSP controls the information transfer between the EQDSP and the
CHDSP realising the frequency hopping as illustrated in Figure 3-18. The FBUS is a two-way
parallel bus dedicated for this purpose and dimensioned to support a maximum of 12 TRXs.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 21/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

FHDSP

TRX1, TRX1,
CHDSP EQDSP
TRX2, F TRX2,
CHDSP B EQDSP
TRX3, U TRX3,
CHDSP S EQDSP

TRX12, TRX12,
CHDSP EQDSP

Figure 3-18. Baseband hopping implementation in the Talk family base stations.

With RF hopping the FBUS is also used, but the connections are always made one-to-one. For
example, the EQDSP of TRX1 is always connected to the CHDSP of TRX1. The FBUS is then used
for sending the RF channel number from the FHDSP to be used on the next time slot. Two
synthesiser banks are used, while one is in use the other is being tuned to the frequency used in the
next time slot. Delivery of channel numbers from FBUS to synthesisers is done by hardware.

RF hopping and BB hopping cannot be used simultaneously. This means that all the sectors under
the same Base Station Control Function (BCF) must use the same hopping method, if any.
However, some sectors may be hopping while others remain non-hopping. The used combiner
type may also restrict the possibility of utilising RF hopping. If Remote Tuned Combiners (RTC) are
used, the RF hopping cannot be used. This is because the RTC is based on tuneable cavities, which
cannot be retuned dynamically according to the used hopping sequence. The minimum channel
spacing when RTC is used is 600 kHz. The other combiner option for the Talk family base stations
is the wide band Antenna Filter Equipment (AFE). AFE supports both BB and RF hopping and there
are no minimum channel spacing requirements.

3.4 PrimeSite

PrimeSite is a small highly integrated base station based on the Talk family technology. It contains
only one TRX and the hardware is reduced, so that the FBUS have been removed and the functions
of FHDSP have been integrated to the CHDSP.

The RF hopping can be implemented by connecting two or more PrimeSites together as a multi-
TRX configuration. In this case the first PrimeSite provides the BCCH carrier and is thus in a non-
hopping mode, whereas the other connected PrimeSites are hopping according to the hopping
sequence.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 22/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

The BB hopping is also possible to arrange with the PrimeSites by using properties of RF hopping.
This pseudo-BB hopping appears outwards similar to the pure BB-hopping. Pseudo-BB hopping is
possible when two or more PrimeSites have been connected for a multi-TRX configuration. The
PrimeSite is able to transmit the first time slot (RTSL 0) by using a different frequency than the other
time slots. The pseudo-BB hopping is realised by transmitting the RTSL 0 on the BCCH TRX on one
fixed frequency and the other time slots by using a frequency determined according to the hopping
sequence. The other TRXs use the HSN1 for the RTSL 0s and HSN2 for the RTSLs 1-7 as described
in Section 1.2. The number of frequencies in the pseudo-BB hopping equals the number of connected
PrimeSites for RTSLs 1-7 and one less for the RTSL 0. A dummy signal is sent on the BCCH
frequency in the non-active TCH time slots.

3.5 Base Station Controller

The BSC functionality related to frequency hopping is implemented by software. There are no
hardware dependencies. The frequency hopping management in the BSC is quite simple. The main
principle is that the BSC is handling logical channels on the cells under its control. The logical
channels may then be assigned on the frequency hopping physical channels, but they are provided by
the base stations. The basic requirement for the BSC is to handle the additional parameters (MA,
MAIO and HSN) needed to define a hopping logical channel. The parameters are stored in the BSS
Radio Network Configuration Database (BSDATA) in the BSC, maintained by the Operation and
Maintenance (O&M) software.

The radio resource management doesn’t know about frequency hopping. It allocates the logical
channels as usual. The hopping related parameters are attached later by the Abis interface program
block, which reads the needed hopping related parameters from the database. The parameters
defining a frequency hopping channel are then attached to Abis and Air interface signaling messages.

In Abis and Air interface radio resource management signaling the frequency hopping is affecting the
CHANNEL_ACTIVATION (Abis), IMMEDIATE_ASSIGNMENT (Air),
ASSIGNMENT_COMMAND (Air) and HANDOVER_COMMAND (Air) messages.

3.6 NPS/X

NPS/X is an integrated software package for the cellular network planning developed by Nokia. See
more details of the FH support and the planning and frequency allocation process in Chapters 5.1 and
5.2.

3.7 Maximum Configurations

Maximum BTS configurations are presented in Table 5.


Table 5. Maximum BTS configurations in different BSS software releases.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 23/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

BSS 6 Antennas/cell Antennas/cell


(polarisation (polarisation
BTS type Combiner type BCFs diversity used) Combiner type BCFs diversity used)
2nd generation RTC (BB FH)
omni 10 TRXs 1 1
sectorised 4+4+4 TRXs 1 1
Talk family RTC (BB FH) AFE (BB & RF FH)
omni 6 TRXs 1 1 4 TRXs 1 1
sectorised 6+6+6 TRXs 2 1 4+4+4 TRXs 1 1
Prime Site Standard
(BB & RF FH)
sectorised n*y TRXs 1) 1 1

BSS 7 2nd generation RTC (BB FH)


omni 10 TRXs 1 1
sectorised 4+4+4 TRXs 1 1
Talk family RTC (BB FH) AFE (BB & RF FH)
omni 6 TRXs 1 1 12 TRXs 1 3
sectorised 6+6+6 TRXs 2 1 12+12+12 TRXs 3 3
Prime Site Standard
(BB & RF FH)
sectorised n*y TRXs 1) 1 1

BSS 8 2nd generation RTC (BB FH)


omni 10 TRXs 1 1
sectorised 4+4+4 TRXs 1 1
Talk family RTC (BB FH) AFE (BB & RF FH)
omni 12 TRXs 1 1 12 TRXs 1 3
sectorised 12+12+12 TRXs 2 1 12+12+12 TRXs 3 3
Prime Site Standard
(BB & RF FH)
sectorised n*y TRXs 1) 1 1
1) The amount of sectors is not limited; even each TRX can be a sector of its own. Max. 16 TRXs per BCF are allowed.
They can be freely divided into sectors of different sizes. Only rule is that n*y must be less than or equal to 16.

3.8 Radio Network Fault Management

The radio network configuration management in the BSC determines the recovery actions in
abnormal situations in the BSS radio network, such as faults, fault cancels and initialisations. The
recovery actions are executed if errors occur in the functional blocks of the BTS, such as the carrier
unit, the frame unit, the tranceiver, functional blocks common to the whole cell or the functional
blocks common to the whole BTS site. In addition to this, the recovery options are executed if the D-
channel of the Abis interface fails or if there are failures detected by the call control of the BSC in the
connection with the radio channel allocation procedure. The recovery actions are determined based
on the type of the faulty functional block and they are based on the radio facilities configured to the
faulty block.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 24/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

3.8.1 The 2nd Generation Base Station

A frame unit fault may be either internal or external. The internal fault could be caused, for
example, by a FU hardware malfunction and the external fault could happen, for example, because of
a lost LAPD-link to the TRX. In both cases the recovery procedure is similar. The procedure is as
follows:

1. The BTS alarms the BSC or the BSC detects a non-functional LAPD-link.
2. The BSC clears all the calls that are allocated to those A bis circuits corresponding to the faulty
TRX. Calls on the other TRXs proceed normally.
3. The BSC blocks the faulty frame unit in order not to allow new traffic for the A bis circuits
corresponding to it.

The calls on the other TRXs can proceed normally and the hopping parameters can be left untouched,
because all the carrier units are still functioning. The mobiles on the cell can still hop over all the
frequencies originally allocated to that cell.

In case of a carrier unit fault one tranceiver doesn’t work properly. Thus, one of the frequencies in
the hopping sequence cannot be transmitted and/or received properly. In this case the procedure is as
follows:

1. The BTS alarms the BSC.


2. The BSC blocks all the TRXs of the cell for a while. This causes clearing of all the ongoing calls
on that cell.
3. The BSC calculates new hopping parameters including a new MA-list in which the frequency of the
faulty CU is removed.
4. The BSC unblocks the TRXs that have functioning CUs and the new hopping parameters are
transferred to the BTS.
5. The BSC allows new traffic for the functioning TRXs.

3.8.2 Talk Family Base Stations and PrimeSite

In a case of BB hopping the procedure is similar to the carrier unit fault in the 2nd generation BTS as
described in the previous section.

If the BTS is RF hopping, the recovery procedure is similar to the frame unit fault in the 2nd
generation BTS as described in the previous section.

3.9 Restrictions on the Usage of FH

3.9.1 DL Power Control with BB FH

In BB FH the BCCH carrier is involved in the hopping sequence. The BCCH carrier is always sent in
the downlink direction with the maximum power defined for the cell. When the PC is used in the
other than BCCH carrier, there is a big difference in the sent / received power between the carriers.
The gain control of some mobiles cannot follow so big and sudden changes in the received power.

Therefore, it is recommended to restrict the PC range in DL direction to 10-15 dB with BB FH.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 25/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

3.9.2 Downlink DTX

Baseband hopping combined with downlink DTX causes problems in the mobile stations, because in
the silent phase the dummy frames are sent on the BCCH frequency causing malfunction in the
mobile stations. ETSI has approved a solution to solve the problem and it is implemented in Nokia
BSS. The solution is to use a special training sequence code in the dummy burst but it does not
guarantee that all mobile station models of different manufacturers are working error free.

3.9.3 Extended Range Cell (DE34/DF34/DG35)

Only RF hopping is supported, and only for the TRXs serving the normal coverage area. The TRXs
serving the extended coverage area cannot hop.

3.9.4 MS Speed Detection

The speed detection algorithm in the BTS works only for non-hopping channels. In a case of
frequency hopping the speed information in the Measurement Result message from BTS to BSC is
set to value 'non-valid' indicating that speed information is not available from that particular cell.

3.9.5 Half Rate

The interleaving depth of the TCH/HS is four instead of eight as it is in TCH/FS. Because the
interleaving has a significant effect on the successful error correction of the speech frame, especially
on the frequency hopping networks utilising low frequency allocation reuse and fractional loading,
the performance of frequency hopping may be reduced.

The use of cyclic hopping with even number of hopping frequencies should be avoided in networks
utilising half rate. Since the half rate channel is transmitted on every other TDMA frame, the usage of
cyclic hopping with even number of frequencies means that one half rate connection uses only half of
the frequencies. This problem doesn’t occur if random hopping sequences are used.

3.9.6 Frequency Sharing

The basic requirement in frequency sharing (1/1 reuse, 3/3 reuse) is that the cells at one site have to
be controlled by the same BCF, so that they are frame synchronised. With the current Nokia
equipment this requirement limits the maximum TRX configuration to 12 TRXs per site.

3.9.7 RTC Combiner

In the 2nd generation and Talk Family base stations, the RTC combiners have the limitation of the
minimum channel spacing of 600 kHz.

3.9.8 NPS/X

NPS/X 3.2 and the older versions don’t support frequency allocation for a fractional loaded network
(= more frequencies than TRXs). NPS/X 3.2 can estimate the quality of the fractional loaded
frequency plan.

NPS/X 3.3 can make the channel allocation for a fractional loaded network.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 26/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

4. SELECTING THE RIGHT HOPPING STRATEGY


The goal in the selection of the hopping strategy is to maximise the effectiveness of frequency
hopping in order to achieve a maximum capacity and/or quality gain. The basic requirement for
the maximum FH gain is to make sure that each cell has a sufficient number of frequencies in the
hopping sequence. Equally important is that a good frequency plan minimising the interference can
be produced.

The BTS hardware may severely restrict the possibilities. Second generation base stations are only
capable of BB hopping. The Talk family (3rd gen) base stations support also RF hopping, but only if
wide band combiners (AFE) are used.

The maximum TRX configurations which can be used with different hopping modes (combiners)
and hopping schemes (maximum TRX amounts under the same BCF) can easily become also
restricting factors.

The amount of antennas and antenna feeder cables can be a limiting factor. With AFE combiner,
about three times more antennas are required than with RTC combiner.

The utilisation of RF hopping is preferable if downlink power control is used. In BB hopping the
DL PC causes dramatic changes in DL field strength as some of the bursts are transmitted by the full
power BCCH TRX and the rest of the bursts by low power TRXs. The mobile receivers cannot
tolerate quick changes of field strength resulting to poor DL quality. To avoid this problem the
maximum power reduction for DL PC in conjunction with BB hopping should be limited to 10 – 15
dB. This limitation is likely to reduce the achievable gain from DL PC.

As in conventional network, the successful implementation of RF hopping with fractional loading


requires a good frequency plan that minimises the interference in the network. Usually the best
results can be achieved with a help of a frequency allocation tool. However, the frequency allocation
is not possible for fractionally loaded networks if the frequency allocation tool doesn’t support
fractional loading. For NPS/X this support is available in version 3.3.

There is, however, one special case of RF hopping with fractional loading that doesn’t require any
frequency planning at all. In this single MA-list scheme all the frequencies are allocated to every cell
so that the frequency allocation reuse is 1. In many cases this scheme may not provide the best
possible gains, but the gain compared to a non-hopping network is still significant as verified in a
trial that was conducted in a real network. If the frequency band is extremely limited, the application
of a single MA-list may be the only sensible way to implement FH, because it always provides the
maximum number of frequencies to hop over in every cell.

Another possibility is to utilise frequency sharing arrangement. In this scheme all the cells of one
site share the same MA-list in a controlled manner so that interference between the cells of the same
site can be avoided. Frequency sharing makes it possible to have enough hopping frequencies in
every cell without a need to utilise fractional loading. Thus, the frequency planning is possible with
tools that don’t support fractional loading.

The main factors affecting the decision of the frequency hopping strategy are presented in Figure 4-
19.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 27/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

2nd gen.
BTS generation
3rd gen. only
BB FH used on the cells
having more than 2 TRXs
RTC
Combiner type / max 6 TRX / cell with RTC
Amount of antennas or 12 TRX with AFE
AFE
No
3 TRX/cell
Easy planning preferred No or more Maximum gain from
over maximum capacity Min TRX configuration DL PC required
Yes
2 TRX/cell Yes
No

<=12 TRXs/site Planning tool supports


RF FH with frequency
configurations FH and fractional loading
allocation reuse 1
(=single MA list scheme) No
Yes Yes Yes
max 12 TRX / site!
(under the same BCF)
RF FH with frequency
RF FH with frequency
sharing (no fractional allocation reuse 3 ~ 5
loading)
max 12 TRX / cell
max 12 TRX / site!
(under the same BCF)

Figure 4-19. Flow chart for hopping strategy decision.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 28/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

5. FREQUENCY PLANNING OF FREQUENCY HOPPING NETWORKS


Frequency hopping requires some new considerations in the frequency planning process. This is
especially important if the RF hopping with fractional loading is used. The frequency planning of
fractionally loaded networks requires special attention to the load control. On the other hand, the RF
hopping allows some new planning concepts like frequency sharing and the control over frequency
allocation reuse while the effective reuse in the network remains the same.

Large TRX configurations make baseband hopping feasible. In order to achieve a proper
frequency hopping gain, a minimum of three TRXs in a cell should be used with the baseband
hopping [Tun97]. The benefit of the baseband hopping is that the TCHs located on the BCCH TRX
are included in the frequency hopping sequence. The BCCH frequencies have a high frequency reuse
in order to guarantee a successful signaling and a fast decoding of the base station identification code.
It is beneficial to have this interference free BCCH frequency included in the hopping sequence,
because it is likely to improve the quality of reception on the hopping logical channels.

In frequency planning point of view, the planning of a baseband hopping network differs less than
the planning of a RF hopping network from the planning of a conventional non-hopping network.
The main difference is that the fractional loading is not possible when the baseband hopping is used.
Because of this, it is possible to use the conventional frequency planning tools when planning the
baseband hopping network. However, because of the interference and frequency diversity gains,
lower C/I ratios and therefore smaller frequency reuse distances can be allowed in the baseband
hopping network compared to a non-hopping network.

5.1 Network Planning Procedure

The network planning and monitoring process for a baseband frequency hopping network is
basically the same than for a non-hopping network. The planning of an RF hopping network can
be a little more complex, if the maximum capacity is wanted to get out from the network. The
suitable frequency allocation scheme have to be selected and the frequency load must be equalized to
guarantee an equal quality distribution.

If a tight frequency allocation scheme has been chosen then the estimation of the subjective speech
quality can become a more challenging task compared to a non-hopping network. When FH is used
the RXQual distribution is not anymore comparable to the non-hopping network.

NPS/X is an integrated software package for the cellular network planning developed by Nokia. It
provides the basic tools for coverage prediction, frequency allocation and interference analysis. The
propagation modeling is based on digital maps presenting both the terrain type information and the
height data of the target area. Available propagation models include Okumura-Hata, Juul-Nyholm,
Walfish-Ikegami and a ray-tracing model. The ray-tracing model is specifically for microcell
planning and it is available in NPS/X version 3.2.

NPS/X versions before version 3.2 don’t include any frequency hopping specific support. New
versions called NPS/X 3.2 and 3.3 have some new functionalities to make the frequency planning and
the quality analysis an easier task, see Chapter 5.2.

Figure 5-20. Network planning and monitoring process.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 29/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Capacity
CapacityPlanning
Planning Monitoring
Monitoring
NPSX
NPSX
Netdim
Netdim NDW
NDW
NDW
NDW

NMS/2000
NMS/2000

PlanEdit
PlanEdit
NPS/X
NPS/X3.3
3.3 CDW
CDW
Frequency
FrequencyPlanning
Planning Parameter
ParameterPlanning
Planning

5.2 Frequency Planning Procedure with NPS/X

NPS/X versions before version 3.2 don’t include any frequency hopping specific support. However,
since the frequency hopping doesn’t affect the propagation, the coverage planning phase is not
different when planning frequency hopping networks compared to non-hopping networks. In
coverage limited cells the frequency hopping increases the cell coverage area because of the
frequency diversity gain. Since the BCCH time slot doesn’t hop, the increased coverage area must
be dimensioned according to the performance of BCCH time slot instead of hopping TCHs, see
Chapter 2.1.5. For this reason, the frequency diversity gain should be considered as a quality gain in
the cell border area rather than a gain increasing the cell service area.

For the planning of baseband hopping networks the traditional frequency allocation and
interference analysis tools are also sufficient. Due to the frequency diversity and interference
diversity gains the hopping allows somewhat worse C/I ratios compared to a non-hopping network.
This can be taken into account when setting parameters for the frequency allocation tool leading to a
tighter frequency plan. When analysing the resulting plan, higher interference levels can be tolerated.

Frequency hopping specific planning tool support is needed when RF hopping with fractional
loading is used. Fractional loading means that a cell is allocated with more frequencies than there are
TRXs.

The quality prediction tool in NPS/X 3.2 estimates the downlink RXQUAL for every pixel in the
work area. These values can be displayed in the digital map using different colours for particular
RXQUAL levels. From the map overlay the areas potentially suffering from interference can be
easily identified. To make the comparison between different plans easier, a statistics window is also
implemented. This window presents the distribution of predicted RXQUAL values in the work area.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 30/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

The prediction is based on the C/I ratio that is calculated by using the field strengths of the serving
carrier and the interfering carriers. The corresponding Bit Error Ratio (BER) is determined from the
calculated C/I ratio. The calculations take the DTX factor and the load factor into account where
appropriate. When the BER for the pixel is calculated it is converted to RXQUAL value according to
the mapping specified in GSM specifications [GSM 05.08]. The input parameters needed for the
calculation are the frequencies allocated for the cells, the DTX factor and the blocking probability for
each cell. Both base band and RF hopping modes are supported. Note, that the frequency
allocation for a fractional loaded network is not supported in NPS/X 3.2.

Figure 5-21. Example output from the RXQUAL prediction tool.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 31/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Figure 5-22. RXQUAL statistics window.

NPS/X 3.3 will include a new frequency allocation tool, which is capable of allocating frequencies
utilising low frequency reuse and fractional loading. Also the MAIO Management can be taken into a
use. The MA list lengths can be defined manually in cell basis, or NPS/X can define them
automatically by a certain criteria. After the MA list length has been chosen the allocation algorithm
tries to produce an optimal allocation. In high interfered areas longer MA list lengths can be tried to
average the interference.

Also the network simulator of NPS/X 3.3 includes a support for FH.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 32/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Capacity
Capacity NetDim / OMC / CDW
estimation, Frequency
estimation,
cell
Frequency NPS/X / NDW
cellbasis
basis requirements
requirements
Spectrum Planning Estimation Quality
QualityAnalysis
Analysis
Spectrum Planning Estimationof
of
and
andHW concept needed Automatic
HW concept needednumber
number Automatic
constraints decision of Parameter
Parametertuning
constraints decision offrequencies
frequencies tuning

NPS/X 3.3

Coverage Automatic
Automaticinterferer
Coveragedata
data generation
interferer
generationfor
forIUO
IUO
Interference
Interference
Calibration Planning
Planningof
ofother
CalibrationTool
Tool parameters
other
Interference parameters
Neighbour Interferencematrix
matrix
Neighbourcell
cell generation
generation
measurements
measurementswith
with Frequency
Frequency
GPA
GPAtool
tool Allocation
Allocation
Figure 5-23. Frequency allocation procedure.

5.3 Frequency Reuse on Frequency Hopping Network

Since the frequency band is always limited, the frequencies have to be reused in the network. As the
reuse distance becomes smaller, there are more frequencies available for each cell. Because each
TRX in a cell requires a unique frequency, the capacity potential of a cell is increased, as there are
more frequencies available for each cell. However, when the reuse distance becomes small enough,
all the frequencies available for the cell cannot be utilised because of too severe interference in the
cell border areas. For a conventional non-hopping network this is the practical frequency reuse limit.
The BB hopping network has this same limit, but because of frequency hopping gain, somewhat
lower reuse distances are allowed before the quality reaches the minimum acceptable limit.

The advantage of RF hopping is that the frequency reuse distance can be set as low as wanted. This
can be done, because a RF hopping cell can use more frequencies than there are TRXs installed. This
means that the used frequencies are only fractionally loaded as presented in Section 5.4.3. For a
fractionally loaded RF hopping network, two reuse figures have to be defined. These are effective
reuse and frequency allocation reuse. They are presented in the following sections.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 33/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

5.3.1 Effective Reuse

The effective reuse is essentially the same as the conventional frequency reuse distance. It is
calculated as

N freqsTOT
Reff = , ( 5.1 )
N TRXave
where:
• Reff = effective reuse
• NfreqsTOT = total number of used frequencies
• NTRXave = average number of TRXs in a cell

Since the effective reuse takes the actual number of frequencies together with the number of TRXs
into account, it can be also used as a capacity index, provided that the TRXs can be loaded at least to
the hard blocking limit as presented in Section 5.4.2. The smaller the effective reuse, the higher the
capacity in terms of the number of TCHs provided by one frequency in the network.

5.3.2 Frequency Allocation Reuse (RF FH only)

Frequency allocation reuse indicates how closely the frequencies are actually reused in a network.
Thus, it indicates the severity of a worst case C/I in the cell border. It is calculated as

N freqsTOT
FAR = , ( 5.2 )
N freqs / MA

where:
• FAR = frequency allocation reuse
• NfreqsTOT = total number of used frequencies
• Nfreqs/MA = average number of frequencies in MA-lists

If the network doesn’t utilise fractional loading, the frequency allocation reuse is the same as the
effective reuse. Example of the reuse calculations for the fractionally loaded RF hopping network is
presented in Figure 5-24.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 34/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Frequency Allocation Reuse ≠ Effective Reuse

Example:
Total # of freqs = 30
3
2
1 FAR = 30/10 = 3
3 3 10 frequencies / cell
2 2 4 TRX¨s / cell Eff.reuse = 30/4 =7.5
1 1

1/3 Effective Reuse = Total # of frequencies/


Number of TRXs per cell

Frequency Allocation Reuse = Total # of


frequencies / # of frequencies in MAL
Figure 5-24. Example of reuse calculations.

5.4 Load on Networks Utilising Fractional Loading (RF FH only)

One of the most essential parameters of the fractionally loaded RF hopping network is the load. The
load on the frequencies is the most important one since it determines the probability of collisions.
Collision means that the serving cell and an interfering cell are transmitting at the same frequency at
the same time so that the potential interference becomes reality.

5.4.1 Frequency Load

When designing a network with low frequency allocation reuse, the interference sources are very
close. Even a neighboring cell may be an interferer by sharing at least some of the frequencies. In
that kind of situations the C/I is very low when the collisions occur. In order to guarantee an adequate
quality, the collision probability has to be made low. The closer the interferers, the more infrequent
the collisions must be in order to maintain a proper quality. The collision probability depends on the
load of the hopping frequencies called a frequency load. The frequency load describes the probability
that a frequency channel is used for transmission at one cell at one time.

The frequency load is a product of two other loads: the average busy hour TCH occupancy, which
should in most cases be equal to the hard blocking load that is presented in Section 5.4.2, and the
fractional load that is presented in Section 5.4.3. The frequency load can be written as

L freq = LHW ⋅ L frac , ( 5.3 )

where:
• Lfreq = frequency load
• LHW = the busy hour average hard blocking load
• Lfrac = fractional load

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 35/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Each frequency allocation reuse corresponds to a different C/I at the cell border, thus requiring a
different maximum allowed frequency load in order to keep the collision probability low enough.

5.4.2 Hard Blocking Load

Hard blocking means that all the available traffic channels in the cell are in use and all the new call
attempts fail because of the lack of available traffic channels. If it is assumed that the call attempts
occur randomly, then the number of call attempts in a time interval is Poisson distributed. If the call
attempts are Poisson distributed and the length of the calls is exponentially distributed, then the hard
blocking probability (that is also known as the grade of service) can be calculated by using the Erlang
B formula

T N TCH
N !
B = N TCHTCH n , ( 5.4 )
T

n =0 n !

where:
• B = hard blocking probability
• T = offered traffic (Erl)
• N = number of TCHs in the cell
TCH

In order not to exceed the predefined hard blocking probability, the average busy hour TCH
occupancy may not exceed the threshold defined by the offered traffic at the desired blocking
probability and the number of TCHs. When determining the hard blocking load, only the non-BCCH
TRXs should be considered as illustrated in Figure 5-25. That’s because the BCCH TRX is non-
hopping in RF hopping cell and the calculation of the loads is only relevant in soft blocking limited
network. Currently soft blocking limited BB hopping networks should not be designed because of the
lack of the gatekeeper algorithm, which prohibits the initialisation of new calls if the load in the
network is about to exceed the load threshold at the soft blocking limit. The hard blocking load is
calculated as

ThopTCH
L HW = , ( 5.5 )
N hopTCH
where:
• L = hard blocking load
HW

• T = average number of used TCHs in the busy hour


hopTCH

• N = total number of TCHs in the hopping TRXs


hopTCH

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 36/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Load on the BCCH TRX


not considered, since
75 % 25 %
the BCCH frequencies
are planned separately

TRX-1 BCCH SDCCH SDCCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH f1

TRX-2 TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH f2,f3,f4

TRX-3 TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH f3,f4,f2

TRX-4 TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH TCH f4,f2,f3

Active slots Empty slots

Figure 5-25. Hard blocking load of 75% on RF hopping TRXs.

The average busy hour TCH load, as defined in Equation (5.5), can be used as the maximum TCH
occupancy. In reality, there are times when the TCH occupancy is over the busy hour average LHW.
However this happens randomly and since the LHW limit is an average there is about an equal time in
which the load is less than the LHW. If the offered traffic is Poisson distributed, the frequency
allocation can be quite safely dimensioned by using the LHW as the maximum TCH occupancy. In an
environment where the offered traffic is known not to be randomly generated, a higher figure should
be used.

5.4.3 Fractional Load

Fractional loading means that the cell has been allocated more frequencies than there are TRXs as
illustrated in Figure 5-26. This is only possible for RF hopping TRXs. The fractional loading is very
useful when the number of TRXs is low. By utilising fractional loading, it is possible to provide
enough frequencies to hop over (to get FH gain) to even a cell with just one hopping TRX. Fractional
load can be calculated as

N TRX
L frac = , ( 5.6 )
N freqs / cell

where:
• Lfrac = fractional load
• NTRX = number of TRXs in a cell
• Nfreqs/cell = number of frequencies allocated to a cell (MA-list length)

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 37/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

TRX-1 BCCH f1

TRX-2 f2, f3, f4, f5, f6

TRX-3 f2, f3, f4, f5, f6

TRX-4 f2, f3, f4, f5, f6

Active slots Empty slots Frac. load = 3/5 = 0.6

Figure 5-26. Fractional load of 0.6.

In a soft blocking limited network the fractional load is used to tune the frequency load down to a
desired level, which is determined by the used frequency allocation reuse.

5.5 Trunking Effect and Effective Reuse

For Poisson distributed call attempts, it is characteristic that the hard blocking load providing the
same blocking probability increases as the number of traffic channels increases as presented in Figure
5-27. This is called trunking effect. For a hard blocking limited network this is a real gain since the
network is able to serve more traffic with the same grade of service and the same effective reuse.
However, for a soft blocking limited network utilising fractional loading the trunking effect doesn’t
provide any gain. As the hard blocking load increases, the fractional load must be decreased in order
to keep the frequency load and thus the collision probability acceptable. Decreasing the fractional
load is done by adding more frequencies than TRXs to the cells. This has a direct effect on the
effective reuse. The effective reuse can be rewritten as

N freqsTOT N freqsTOT N freqs / MA FAR


Reff = = ⋅ = . ( 5.7 )
N TRX N freqs / MA N TRX L frac

Equation (5.7) shows the fixed relation between the effective and frequency allocation reuses and the
fractional load. The required increase in the effective reuse in a soft blocking limited network as the
trunking efficiency increases is presented in Figure 5-28. It should be noted that although the
effective reuse increases, the number of frequencies required to handle a certain amount of traffic
stays constant. The effective reuse doesn’t take the trunking efficiency into account.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 38/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

100.0 %

90.0 %

80.0 %
TCH occupancy at the hard blocking limit

70.0 %

60.0 %

Hard blocking prob. 5%


50.0 % Hard blocking prob. 2%
Hard blocking prob. 1%

40.0 %

30.0 %

20.0 %

10.0 %

0.0 %
19
22

28
31
34

43

55
58

67

79
82

88
91
94

100
1
4
7
10
13
16

25

37
40

46
49
52

61
64

70
73
76

85

97
Number of TCH's

Figure 5-27. Average busy hour TCH occupancy at the hard blocking limit.
12

11

10
effective reuse

7
FAR 1 (2% Blocking, Freq.load 7,5% (trialed))
FAR 1 (1% Blocking, Freq.load 7,5% (trialed))
FAR 3.65 (2% Blocking, Freq.load 30% (trialed))
FAR 3.65 (1% Blocking, Freq.load 30% (trialed))
6 FAR 3 (2% Blocking, Freq.load 30% (simulated))
FAR 3 (1% Blocking, Freq.load 30% (simulated))

5
2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12
TRX's/cell

Figure 5-28. Increase of required effective reuse on a soft blocking limited network due to
the better trunking efficiency on bigger cell configurations.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 39/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

5.6 Frequency Allocation Strategies

When preparing for a frequency allocation, some decisions have to be made concerning the wanted
frequency allocation reuse and the corresponding frequency load. Also, it must be decided
whether to use a separate frequency band for the BCCH carriers or use a common band for both the
BCCH and the normal TCH TRXs.

5.6.1 BCCH Allocation

The BCCH carriers are special in a sense that the transmission to the downlink direction is constant
and always active on them. There are two basic approaches in the BCCH allocation. The BCCH
frequencies may be allocated from a separate dedicated frequency band or the frequencies for the
BCCH TRXs and the TCH TRXs (TRXs not carrying the BCCH) may be allocated from one
common band.

Both approaches have been simulated for frequency hopping network in [Kro97]. In this simulation,
the used frequency band was 27 frequencies corresponding to 5.4 MHz. For the dedicated band
strategy 12 frequencies were dedicated to the BCCH TRXs and the remaining 15 frequencies were
used as TCH frequencies, which were allocated by using a slow Adaptive Channel Allocation (ACA)
algorithm presented in [Alm96]. In the common band case, the BCCH frequencies were first
allocated by using a reuse of 27. The ACA algorithm was then used to select the TCH frequencies for
each cell. The BCCH frequencies were not changed during this procedure. In both cases three
different TRX configurations were simulated. The cells had 3, 4 or 5 TCH TRXs depending on the
case. In every case, the average reuse is the same in both strategies, so the results are easily
comparable.

In the simulation, the signal powers were averaged over a period of 0.48 seconds. During this period,
all the frequencies in the hopping sequence have been used several times. Thus, the fast fading can be
assumed to have been removed by averaging. The slow fading was assumed to be constant over the
averaging period. Both, the co-channel and the adjacent channel interference were considered. The
simulated hopping mode was random BB hopping. Frequency diversity effect was not considered.
The used interference limited network consisted of 108 cells in three sectorised configuration having
a radius of 1 km. The mobiles were randomly generated and static. Power control and DTX were
used in the both directions.

The system performance was measured by determining the 10 percent Cumulative Distribution
Function (CDF) value of the C/I ratio. The load measure was defined as the number of served users
per cell using the time slot one.

The uplink performance as a function of served traffic is presented in Figure 5-29. It can be seen that
the common band strategy performs better. The improvement is 1-2 dB. The more uniform reuse
provided by the common band strategy is more effective, because the continuous transmission on the
BCCH TRXs is only employed in downlink direction. The BCCH reuse of 12 forces the reuse on the
TCH TRXs to be very tight. This is unnecessary in uplink direction since the load is about the same
on the BCCH and TCH TRXs. The common band strategy is better when the uplink is
considered. However, the uplink is not usually the limiting link in interference limited networks,
since antenna diversity is normally utilised at base stations.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 40/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

The downlink performance on the TCH TRXs as a function of served traffic is presented in Figure 5-
30. For a downlink direction the dedicated bands strategy is superior. The improvement is on the
order of 1-5 dB depending on the traffic load. The degradation of the C/I ratio is quite slow as the
traffic load increases in common bands case. This indicates that the BCCH transmitters are the main
interference source. It was also shown in additional simulations that the performance gain from the
power control and the DTX in the common band systems were smaller than in corresponding
dedicated band systems. This happens, because the BCCH frequencies, which are the dominating
interference source, cannot utilise the PC or the DTX.

The downlink performance on the BCCH TRXs as a function of served traffic is presented in Figure
5-31. The downlink performance on the BCCH TRXs is important, because the call initialisation
always starts on the BCCH frequency and the BCCH frequencies have to be clean enough to
guarantee successful decoding of the cell identification for handover purposes. The common band
strategy performs clearly better when the load is small. As the load increases on the interfering TCH
TRXs, the performance degrades rapidly. The dedicated bands strategy provides a very stable
behavior as the traffic load doesn’t have any effect on the performance. In the dedicated band case
the C/I of the BCCH frequencies in the downlink direction is exclusively determined by the used
frequency reuse on the BCCH TRXs. Because of the stable and easily predictable behavior on the
BCCH frequencies in the downlink direction, the dedicated bands strategy is preferable.

Figure 5-29. UL C/I at the 10 % level.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 41/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Figure 5-30. DL C/I at the 10 % level.

Figure 5-31. DL C/I at the 10 % level on the BCCH frequency.

Still one, not common used method is to use separate but not continuous band for the BCCH
frequencies. For example, every 4th frequency is allocated for BCCH. Thus, adjacent channel
interference is avoided between BCCH frequencies. On the other hand, TCH band causes adjacent
channel interference for the BCCH frequencies and vice versa, but the interference might not be too
significant.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 42/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

BCCH TCH Dedicated band

BCCH + TCH Common band

Dedicated mixed band

BCCH TCH
Figure 5-32. Different BCCH allocation strategies.

5.6.2 Selecting the Effective Reuse (BB FH)

With BB hopping, the fractional loading cannot be utilised and the number of hopping frequencies
is always the same as the number of TRXs in a cell, except for TCHs on the zero time slots, which
always have one hopping frequency less than the other TCHs. Thus, in a BB hopping network the
frequency allocation reuse always equals the effective reuse in the network.

Since frequency and interference diversity gains significantly depend on the number of hopping
frequencies, it is recommended to have at least three hopping frequencies as a minimum
configuration. If the cell TRX configurations are smaller than that, BB FH is not recommended to be
used. In that case, RF FH or IUO might offer a better solution to increase the capacity.

Before making the actual frequency plan by using the frequency allocation tool like NPS/X, an
estimation of the minimum effective reuse might be needed, for example in tendering phase. The
following Figure 5-33 gives an estimation of an applicable reuse compared to the situation before
implementing BB FH. For example, if we have in the non-hopping network reuse 15, after
implementing BB FH with 4 TRX average configuration per cell, we end up to reuse 9. The bigger is
the TRX configuration, the smaller reuse we can use, since the reuse is dependent on the number of
hopping frequencies (=TRXs with BB FH).

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 43/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

MIN Effective Reuses with different TRX configurations in BB


FH case
20
18
16
14
New reuse

12
10 No FH
8 3 TRX
6
4 TRX
4
2 5 TRX
0 6 TRX
3 6 9 12 15 18
Original reuse

Figure 5-33. Effective reuse after implementing BB FH.

5.6.3 Selecting the Frequency Allocation Reuse and the Frequency Load (RF FH)

If the RF hopping is used, the frequency allocation reuse has a great impact on the required fractional
load and thus, on the number of frequencies allocated to each cell. With BB hopping, the fractional
loading cannot be utilised and the number of hopping frequencies is always the same as the number
of TRXs in a cell, except for TCHs on the zero time slots, which always have one hopping frequency
less than the other TCHs. Thus, in a BB hopping network the frequency allocation reuse always
equals the effective reuse in the network.

Since frequency and interference diversity gains significantly depend on the number of hopping
frequencies, it is important to ensure that each cell has enough hopping frequencies. If the cell TRX
configurations are small, RF hopping with fractional loading makes it possible to still provide
sufficient number of hopping frequencies to the cells even with small TRX configurations.
Fractional loading reduces the average channel utilisation in the network, thus reducing the
probability that interference will occur, making it possible to significantly decrease the frequency
reuse distance. The average channel utilisation is also known as frequency load as explained in
Section 5.4.1. The relationship between the frequency allocation reuse distance and the
corresponding maximum frequency load is illustrated in Figure 5-34.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 44/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

1 1 1 1 4 2 1 7
1 1 1 3 3 3 3 1 3 2 3 1
1 1 2 2 2 4 5 2
1 1 1 1 1 1 1 3 1 4 6 5
1 1 3 3 4 2 7 4
1 1 1 2 2 2 3 1 3 3 1 7
1 1 1 1 2 4 2 3

FAR 1 3 4 7

Worsening C/I at the cell border

Increasing collision probability

Max.
frequency load 8% 30% 40?% 70?%

Figure 5-34. Relationship between frequency allocation reuse and maximum allowed
frequency load in the network.

A good approach is first to determine the number of frequencies to hop over in each cell. To
maximise the frequency and interference diversity gains, it is recommended to use at least four
frequencies in MA-lists. This is likely to require fractional loading, especially if the TRX
configurations in the cells are small. Fractional loading means that the frequencies are not
continuously used, which allows the reuse of the same frequency closer. Thus, as the fractional load
decreases, the frequency allocation reuse must be tightened to maintain the same effective reuse. The
relation between the effective reuse, fractional load and the frequency allocation reuse is presented in
Equation (5.3). However, it is beneficial to avoid big differences in the frequency loads caused by
each cell. If the frequency load across the network is kept relatively constant then the
interference will be distributed more evenly in the network.

In practice, the network layout and the surrounding environment have a significant effect on the
highest possible frequency load. Highly irregular network layout makes it very difficult to find a
good frequency allocation that minimises interference in all parts of the network. In that case, it
might be necessary to restrict the maximum frequency load in order to keep interference acceptable.
Generally, in dense propagation environments such as microcells, the path loss slope is steeper. This
naturally reduces interference as the distant interferers are attenuated more. Thus, in these cases
somewhat higher frequency load may be possible. This doesn’t necessarily apply to frequency
allocation reuse of 1, since in that case the worst interferers are the closest neighbors. On the cell
border the interference coming from the neighboring cell attenuates just as much as the signal from
the serving cell regardless of the path loss slope. Because of this, it is not possible to obtain
significant gain from increased path loss slope and it might not be possible to increase the frequency
load. The recommended approach is to start with a low frequency load and then increase it
gradually until the quality threshold is reached.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 45/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Important is also to ensure that the effective reuse is not too low to ensure a good quality. The
following Table contains an example of choosing the right F.A. reuse scheme to give the best
capacity gain. As can be seen, the best capacity is got with the F.A. reuses 2-5. The minimum
effective reuse and maximum frequency load values are still under further consideration. They
might be too optimistic for some environments!
Table 6. Limits for the effective reuse and the frequency load values with different
Example: 21 frequencies
F.A. reuse MA list length Min. Eff. reuse Max. Freq. load Traffic (Erl) TCHs
1 21.0 8.5 8% 13.4 21
2 10.5 7.5 20% 16.8 25
3 7.0 7 30% 16.8 25
4 5.3 6.5 40% 16.8 25
5 4.2 7.5 50% 16.8 25
6 3.5 8.5 55% 15.4 23
7 3.0 10.5 60% 14.4 22
8 2.6 12 65% 13.7 21
9 2.3 13 70% 13.1 20
frequency allocation reuses.

5.6.4 Frequency Sharing by Using MAIO Management (RF FH only)

The MAIO management makes it possible to share the same MA-list between the cells of the same
RF hopping site without co- or adjacent channel collisions. This can be done by utilising the user
definable MAIOoffset and MAIOstep parameters presented in Sections 1.6 and 1.7. MAIOOFFSET helps to
avoid the interference between the cells inside the site, whereas, MAIO STEP avoids the
interference inside the cell. The cell level MAIOoffset parameter defines the MAIOs for the first
TRXs in each cell. The remaining TRXs are given MAIOs according to the Equation (3.1). In Nokia
implementation the default MAIOstep is 1, but it will be adjustable after the BSC software release S7.

The frequency sharing makes it possible for a cell to hop over all the frequencies allocated to that site
as presented in Figure 5-35. All the cells on a site share the same MA-list. Thus, in a case of a three
sectorised site, the site can be allocated three times less frequencies and still the number of
frequencies to hop over in a cell remains the same. Since less frequencies are needed per site, the
frequency allocation reuse distance can be bigger. The bigger reuse distance leads to less
interference, so the fractional loading is not necessarily needed.

MA-list: 3 6 9

6 9 3
3 3 3
1 3 1 6 1 9
2 2 2

9 3 6

TDMA frame n-1 TDMA frame n TDMA frame n+1

Figure 5-35. The principle of frequency sharing.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 46/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

However, there are some requirements that have to be fulfilled. First of all, the basic requirement is
that the cells at one site have to be controlled by the same BCF, so that they are frame
synchronised. With the current Nokia equipment this requirement limits the maximum TRX
configuration to 12 TRXs per site.

The number of frequencies (MA-list length) have to be at least equal (equal if fractional loading is
not to be used) to the total number of TRXs in the site. If the MAIOstep parameter is more than one,
even more frequencies are needed. The requirement can be formulated as follows

min N freqs / site = N TRX / site ⋅ MAIO step , (5.8)


where:
• min N = minimum number of frequencies needed for a site
freqs/site

• N = total number of TRXs on a site


TRX/site

• MAIOstep = the value of the MAIOstep parameter

In Equation (5.8) it is assumed that the MAIO separation between the cells is equal to the used
MAIOstep. In that case, the MAIOoffset parameters are allocated as follows
n −1
MAIO cell n = MAIO step ⋅ ∑ N TRX / cell i , (5.9)
i =1

where:
• MAIOoffset n = MAIOoffset for the n th cell in a site
• MAIOstep = the value of the MAIOstep parameter
• N = number of TRXs in i th cell
TRX/cell i

If the number of frequencies is less than min. N , then co- or adjacent channel interference might
freqs

occur. Example of this is presented in Figure 5-37. In a normal frequency sharing arrangement, the
goal is to minimise the number of frequencies needed per site, so that the frequency allocation
reuse distance can be kept high. For this reason, the MAIOstep should be normally 1. This should be
taken into account in the frequency planning process, because an intracell adjacent channel
interference should not be allowed. Since the frequencies have to be in the increasing order in the
MA-list, the list may not contain adjacent channels if the MAIOstep is 1.

The cells at one site have to use the same HSN. Otherwise, co-channel interference between
the cells will occur. However, the HSNs should be different in interfering sites in order to
ensure the interference diversity. An example of a correct parameter assignment for
frequency sharing is illustrated in Figure 5-36.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 47/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

INDEX NO: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MA_LIST1: 1 4 8 10 15 20

TDMA 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MAI 1 5 1 1 2 3 1 2 0 2 3 4 5 1 5 2 4

TDMA-FRAMES ->
SECTOR MA-LIST HSN MAIO TRX 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
1 1 3 1 bcch frequency 1...
0 2 4 20 4 4 8 10 4 8 1 8 10 15 20 4 20 8 15
1 3 8 1 8 8 10 15 8 10 4 10 15 20 1 8 1 10 20
2 1 3 1 bcch frequency 2 ...
2 2 10 4 10 10 15 20 10 15 8 15 20 1 4 10 4 15 1
3 1 3 1 bcch frequency 3 ...
3 2 15 8 15 15 20 1 15 20 10 20 1 4 8 15 8 20 4
4 3 20 10 20 20 1 4 20 1 15 1 4 8 10 20 10 1 8
5 4 1 15 1 1 4 8 1 4 20 4 8 10 15 1 15 4 10

Figure 5-36. Example of frequency sharing when MAIOstep is 1.


INDEX NO: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MA_LIST1: 1 4 8 10 15

TDMA 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MAI 1 1 1 1 2 3 3 4 0 2 3 0 1 1 1 4 4

TDMA-FRAMES ->
SECTOR MA-LIST HSN MAIO TRX 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
1 1 3 1 bcch frequency 1...
0 2 4 4 4 4 8 10 10 15 1 8 10 1 4 4 4 15 15
1 3 8 8 8 8 10 15 15 1 4 10 15 4 8 8 8 1 1
2 1 3 1 bcch frequency 2 ...
2 2 10 10 10 10 15 1 1 4 8 15 1 8 10 10 10 4 4
3 1 3 1 bcch frequency 3 ...
3 2 15 15 15 15 1 4 4 8 10 1 4 10 15 15 15 8 8
4 3 1 1 1 1 4 8 8 10 15 4 8 15 1 1 1 10 10
5 4 4 4 4 4 8 10 10 15 1 8 10 1 4 4 4 15 15

Figure 5-37. Example of frequency sharing when the site is allocated with too few
frequencies and co-channel interference between sectors exists.

Since the cells on the same site share the same frequencies, all the hopping frequencies are
transmitted in every cell on the same site. This has to be taken into account when the frequency
planning is done. This can be modeled in NPS/X 3.2 or older by utilising power dividers so that the
site has only one cell having as many TRXs as there are non-BCCH TRXs in all the sectors of the
actual site. The cell is distributed to multiple antennas forming multiple sectors by using power
dividers. Special care has to be taken to compensate the losses of power divider. In frequency
allocation phase one common interference probability is determined for the entire site and the site is
then allocated one common set of frequencies that form the MA-list. To avoid interference, the
minimum channel separation has to be at least 1. Since each cell has its own BCCH, the BCCH
allocation has to be done separately without the power divider arrangement.

Simulation results of the performance of a network utilising frequency sharing have been presented
in [Nie98]. In this simulation, the network utilising frequency sharing at a nominal reuse of 3/9 was
compared to the RF hopping network using 1/3 frequency allocation reuse at 33 % frequency load.
The reuse on the BCCH carriers was 4/12 in both cases. The served traffic was also the same in both
cases. The simulated network consisted of 48 3-sectorised sites. Power control was utilised in DL
direction, but the DTX was not activated. Downlink FER statistics reported by each mobile every
0.48 seconds from the non-BCCH carriers were collected for analysis. Mobile speeds of 3 km/h and
50 km/h were simulated.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 48/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

The resulting cumulative density functions of DL FER have been presented in Figure 5-38 and
Figure 5-39. In both mobile speeds, the performance of the two simulated arrangements is very
similar until the FER gets close to 10 %. For the mobile speed of 3 km/h the percentage of FER
samples indicating FER above 15 % is 2 % for the frequency sharing case and 3 % for the 1/3 reuse
case. For the mobile speed of 50 km/h, the corresponding values are about 1.1 % and 1.5%. The
difference in favor of frequency sharing is clear, although not dramatic. However, as higher FER
percentages are studied, the difference gets bigger.

The effect of the mobile speed on the FER distribution can be clearly seen. As the speed increases to
50 km/h, the share of both the low FER percentages and the high FER percentages increases. The
higher mobile speed provides better performance against fast fading. This increases the
proportion of low FER. The higher speed also means that the changes caused by slow fading are
faster and the ability of power control to compensate the fluctuations of signal strength is
reduced. This along with the relatively slow handover algorithm causes the proportion of high FER
to increase at the higher mobile speeds. However, the mobile speed doesn’t have significant effect on
the relative performance of the network utilising frequency sharing.

It may be concluded according to this simulation that the frequency sharing provides better quality
compared to the 1/3 reuse case.

BCCH reuse 4/12, TCH reuse 1/3

BCCH reuse = 4/12, TCH reuse = 3/9 by using MAIO-management

0.1
CDF

0.01

0.001
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 1
FER

Figure 5-38. CDF of DL FER for a mobile speed of 3 km/h.

BCCH reuse 4/12, TCH reuse 1/3

BCCH reuse = 4/12, TCH reuse = 3/9 by using MAIO-management

0.1
CDF

0.01

0.001
0 0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9 1
FER

Figure 5-39. CDF of DL FER for a mobile speed of 50 km/h.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 49/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

5.6.5 Frequency Sharing in the Single MA-list Scheme (RF FH only)

Frequency sharing can also be used to realise the usage of only one MA-list in the networks utilising
sectorised base station configurations. In the single MA-list scheme all the cells use the same set of
frequencies. If the cells in one site use the same MA-lists without the frequency sharing functionality,
occasional co-channel collisions will happen between the cells of one site. When frequency sharing is
used, it can be ensured that no unnecessary co- or adjacent channel collisions will occur provided that
the cells on the same site use the same HSN.

When the single MA-list scheme is employed, a continuous frequency band is usually allocated to
the cells. In order to avoid intracell adjacent channel interference, the MAIOstep should be set to at
least 2. Preferably, even bigger step should be used, especially if uplink power control is not in use.
Because interference between the cells of the same site is much less likely to occur than intracell
interference, a smaller channel separation can be used between the cells of the same site.
Consequently, the number of needed frequencies is reduced. When this possibility is taken into
account, the Equation (5.8) can be rewritten in more general form as follows

min N freqs / site = ( N TRX / site − N cell / site ) ⋅ MAIO step + N cell / site ⋅ S , (5.10)

where:
• min N = minimum number of frequencies needed for a site
freqs/site

• N = total number of TRXs on a site


TRX/site

• MAIOstep = the value of the MAIOstep parameter


• N = total number of cells in the site
cell/site

• S = MAIO separation between cells

A good approach is to set the MAIOstep as high as possible. However, it should be checked that the
requirement presented in Equation (5.10) is still fulfilled. An example of a good MAIO plan is
presented in Figure 5-40. In this example, the MAIO separation between cells is 2 and the MAIOstep is
set to its maximum value, which is 3 in this case. If a MAIO step of 4 would have been used instead,
constant adjacent channel interference would have occurred between the second TRX of sector one
and the fourth TRX of sector three as shown in Figure 5-41.

INDEX NO: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MA_LIST1: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15

TDMA 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MAI 0 2 6 2 2 11 4 0 8 9 3 12 8 8 10 6 8

TDMA-FRAMES ->
SECTOR MA-LIST HSN MAIO TRX 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
1 1 2 1 bcch frequency 1...
0 2 1 3 7 3 3 12 5 1 9 10 4 13 9 9 11 7 9
3 3 4 6 10 6 6 15 8 4 12 13 7 1 12 12 14 10 12
2 1 2 1 bcch frequency 2 ...
5 2 6 8 12 8 8 2 10 6 14 15 9 3 14 14 1 12 14
3 1 2 1 bcch frequency 3 ...
7 2 8 10 14 10 10 4 12 8 1 2 11 5 1 1 3 14 1
10 3 11 13 2 13 13 7 15 11 4 5 14 8 4 4 6 2 4
13 4 14 1 5 1 1 10 3 14 7 8 2 11 7 7 9 5 7

Figure 5-40. Example of frequency sharing when MA-list consists of consecutive


frequencies and MAIOstep is set to 3.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 50/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

INDEX NO: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MA_LIST1: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15

TDMA 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MAI 0 2 6 2 2 11 4 0 8 9 3 12 8 8 10 6 8

TDMA-FRAMES ->
SECTOR MA-LIST HSN MAIO TRX 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
1 1 2 1 bcch frequency 1...
0 2 1 3 7 3 3 12 5 1 9 10 4 13 9 9 11 7 9
4 3 5 7 11 7 7 1 9 5 13 14 8 2 13 13 15 11 13
2 1 2 1 bcch frequency 2 ...
6 2 7 9 13 9 9 3 11 7 15 1 10 4 15 15 2 13 15
3 1 2 1 bcch frequency 3 ...
8 2 9 11 15 11 11 5 13 9 2 3 12 6 2 2 4 15 2
12 3 13 15 4 15 15 9 2 13 6 7 1 10 6 6 8 4 6
16 4 2 4 8 4 4 13 6 2 10 11 5 14 10 10 12 8 10

Figure 5-41. Example of too few frequencies compared to the size of the MAIOstep.

Often, it is possible to achieve higher intracell frequency separations, by using bigger MAIO step and
by not defining the MAIOoffset parameters in increasing order. If this approach is used, the Equations
(7.8) - (7.10) are not valid anymore. Instead, each configuration should be evaluated case by case. An
example of this approach is presented in Figure 5-42. In this example, the used MAIOstep is 6 and the
required MAIO separation between cells is 2. Compared to the example in Figure 5-40, a bigger
MAIOstep can now be used while the number of required frequencies is still the same.
INDEX NO: 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MA_LIST1: 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15

TDMA 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
MAI 0 2 6 2 2 11 4 0 8 9 3 12 8 8 10 6 8

TDMA-FRAMES ->
SECTOR MA-LIST HSN MAIO TRX 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 16
1 1 2 1 bcch frequency 1...
2 2 3 5 9 5 5 14 7 3 11 12 6 15 11 11 13 9 11
8 3 9 11 15 11 11 5 13 9 2 3 12 6 2 2 4 15 2
2 1 2 1 bcch frequency 2 ...
4 2 5 7 11 7 7 1 9 5 13 14 8 2 13 13 15 11 13
3 1 2 1 bcch frequency 3 ...
0 2 1 3 7 3 3 12 5 1 9 10 4 13 9 9 11 7 9
6 3 7 9 13 9 9 3 11 7 15 1 10 4 15 15 2 13 15
12 4 13 15 4 15 15 9 2 13 6 7 1 10 6 6 8 4 6

Figure 5-42. Example of customised MAIO allocation.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 51/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

6. RADIO NETWORK PARAMETERS


The BSS radio network parameters related to frequency hopping are presented in Table 7.

Table 7. FH related BSS radio network parameters.


Object Parameter Description
MA Frequency MA-list. Used with RF FH BTS, max. 63 frequencies per list.
BCCH frequency must not be included in the list.
MA Identification of MA-list MA-list identification number in a BSC (1 - 128).
MA Type of MA-list Frequency band of the MA-list (GSM900, GSM1800, GSM1900).
BTS BTS is hopping (HOP) The hopping mode of the BTS (BB, RF or N).
BTS Hopping sequence Hopping sequence number of the hopping group 1. In BB FH for
number 1 (HSN1) the 0 time slots except the BCCH time slot and in RF FH all the
time slots of hopping TRXs (0 - 63).
BTS Hopping sequence Hopping sequence number of the hopping group 2. For the time
number 2 (HSN2) slots 1-7. BB FH only (0 - 63).
BTS MAIO offset Defines the MAIO for the first TRX in the cell (0 - 62). Allows the
sharing of the same MA-list between multiple sectors of one BTS
without intrasite collisions. Sectors must be under the same BCF.
Relevant in RF FH only.
BTS MAIO step Defines the step size that is used when the MAIO is calculated for
the TRXs in the cell. Relevant in RF FH only. (Available in BSS7)
BTS Identification of MA-list MA-list id number identifying the MA-list that is allocated to that
BTS. Relevant in RF FH only.
TRX Frequency (FREQ) Assign a frequency to a TRX (GSM900 1 - 124, 975 - 1023;
GSM1800 512 - 885; GSM1900 313 - 810)

To define a BB-hopping cell the following parameters have to be set:


• BTS hopping mode (HOP) = BB
• Hopping sequence number 1 (HSN1) = 0..63 (0 for cyclic hopping and 1..63 for random
sequences)
• Hopping sequence number 2 (HSN2) = 0..63 (0 for cyclic hopping and 1..63 for random
sequences) (in most cases HSN1 may equal HSN2)
• Fixed frequencies for each TRX (FREQ)

To define a RF-hopping cell the following parameters have to be set:


• MA-list, MA-list ID and MA-list type must be defined in BSC (max. 63 frequencies)
• BTS hopping mode (HOP) = RF
• Hopping sequence number 1 (HSN1) = 0..63 (0 for cyclic hopping and 1..63 for random
sequences)
• MAIO offset = 0..62
• MAIO step = 0..62 (available in BSS7)
• MA-list ID used by the BTS = 0..128
Examples of MAIO offset and MAIO step definitions are presented in Chapter 8.

6.1 Parameters for MA-list Definitions in BSC

MA-list
Description: Mobile Allocation Frequency List, used with RF hopping BTS,
max. 63 frequencies.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 52/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Object class: Mobile Allocation Frequency List (MA)


GSM reference: GSM 04.08 10.5.2.12,GSM 05.02 6.2.2
Option: -
Release: before S4
Modification: When BTS is locked, if used in a RF hopping BTS
Restriction: BCCH frequency must not be included in the list.
MML name: frequency
MML range: 1..124 and 975..1023 (GSM)
512..885 (DCS)
512..810 (DCS19)
MML default: -
MML command: EBE,EBT,EBI
NMS GUI name: Frequencies
NMS GUI range: 1..124 and 975..1023 (GSM)
512..885 (DCS)
512..810 (DCS19)
NMS GUI dialog name: MAL Parameter Window
NMS DB name: frequency
NMS DB range: 0..1023
NMS DB mapping: 1:1

MA-list ID
Description: Identification of a Mobile Allocation Frequency List in a BSC.
Object class: Mobile Allocation Frequency List (MA)
GSM reference: GSM 04.08 10.5.2.12,GSM 05.02 6.2.2
Option: -
Release: before S4
Modification: Read only
Restriction: -
MML name: Identification of mobile allocation frequency list
MML range: 1..128
MML default: -
MML command: EBE,EBR,EBT,EBI,EQA
NMS GUI name: MAL ID
NMS GUI range: 1..128
NMS GUI dialog name: MAL Parameter Window
NMS DB name: object_instance
NMS DB range: String up to 10 characters
NMS DB mapping: 1:1

Type of MA-list
Description: Frequency band of the list. The band is either GSM, DCS or
DCS19 band.
Object class: Mobile Allocation Frequency List (MA)
GSM reference: GSM 04.08 10.5.2.12,GSM 05.02 6.2.2
Option: -
Release: before S4
Modification: Read only
Restriction: -
MML name: type of the mobile allocation frequency list
MML range: GSM, DCS, DCS19
MML default: -
MML command: EBE,EBI
NMS GUI name: Frequency Band in Use
NMS GUI range: GSM, DCS 1800, PCS 1900
NMS GUI dialog name: MAL Parameter Window
NMS DB name: freq_band_in_use
NMS DB range: 0..3
NMS DB mapping: GSM (0), DCS 1800 (1), PCS 1900 (2)

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 53/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

6.2 BTS Level FH Related Parameters

BTS hopping mode


Description: The hopping mode of the BTS. RF and BB hopping cannot be
active simultaneously at the same site (BCF).
Object class: BTS
GSM reference: GSM 04.08 10.5.2.5
Option: -
Release: before S4
Modification: BTS site types DE21/DF12 and DE45/DF45:
when BTS is locked
BTS site type DE34/DF34:
when BCF and BTS are locked
Restriction: BTS site type DE21/DF12 does not support RF hopping.
MML name: BTS hopping mode (HOP)
MML range: BB baseband hopping is used
RF radio frequency hopping is used
N hopping is not used
MML default: -
MML command: EQC,EQE,EQO
NMS GUI name: Hopping Mode
NMS GUI range: Non-hopping, Baseband, RF
NMS GUI dialog name: BTS Parameter Window
NMS DB name: hopping_mode
NMS DB range: 0..2
NMS DB mapping: Non-hopping (0), Baseband (1), RF (2)

Hopping sequence number 1


Description: HSN1 is used in the frequency hopping sequence generation
algorithm and it is located in the Frequency Hopping System
1 (time slots 0 except BCCH time slot).
Object class: BTS
GSM reference: GSM 04.08 10.5.2.5,GSM 05.02 6.2.2
Option: -
Release: before S4
Modification: When BTS is locked
Restriction: Check that either cyclic or random hopping is used in the
whole site (2nd gen BTS). Parameter is only used with BB and RF hopping.
See parameter BTS hopping mode.
MML name: hopping sequence number 1 (HSN1)
MML range: 0 cyclic hopping
1..63 random hopping
MML default: 0
MML command: EQC,EQE,EQO
NMS GUI name: HSN-1
NMS GUI range: 0..63
NMS GUI dialog name: BTS Parameter Window
NMS DB name: hsn
NMS DB range: 0..63
NMS DB mapping: 1:1

Hopping sequence number 2


Description: HSN2 is used in the frequency hopping sequence generation
algorithm and it is located in the Frequency Hopping System
2 (time slots 1-7).
Object class: BTS
GSM reference: GSM 04.08 10.5.2.5,GSM 05.02 6.2.2
Option: -
Release: before S4
Modification: When BTS is locked

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 54/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Restriction: Check that either cyclic or random hopping is used in the


whole site (2nd gen BTS). Parameter is used only with BB hopping. See
parameter BTS hopping mode.
MML name: hopping sequence number 2 (HSN2)
MML range: 0 cyclic hopping
1..63 random hopping
MML default: 0
MML command: EQC,EQE,EQO
NMS GUI name: HSN-2
NMS GUI range: 0..63
NMS GUI dialog name: BTS Parameter Window
NMS DB name: hsn
NMS DB range: 0..63
NMS DB mapping: 1:1

MAIO offset
Description: The parameter sets the MAIO offset which is the lowest MAIO
in the cell. With MAIO offset it is possible to use the same
MA frequency list for two or more sectors of the site
without collisions.
Object class: BTS
GSM reference: No ref.
Option: -
Release: S6
Modification: The parameter can be modified only when the BTS is
locked or not RF hopping.
Restriction: -
MML name: MAIO offset (MO)
MML range: 0..62
MML default: 0
MML command: EQA,EQO,EFO
NMS GUI name: MAIO Offset
NMS GUI range: 0..62
NMS GUI dialog name: BTS Parameter Window
NMS DB name: maio_offset
NMS DB range: 0..62
NMS DB mapping: 1:1

MAIO step
Description: The parameter sets the MAIO step.
Object class: BTS
GSM Reference: No ref.
Option: -
Release: S7
Modification: On-Line
Restriction: -
MML name: MAIO step (MS)
MML range: 1..62
MML default: 1
MML command: EQA,EQO,EFO
NMS GUI name: MAIO Step
NMS GUI range: 1..62
NMS GUI dialog name: BTS Parameter Window
NMS DB name: maio_step
NMS DB range: 0..62
NMS DB mapping: 1:1
Note: OPTIONAL (Flexible MAIO management)

MA-list used by BTS


Description: The parameter defines the mobile allocation frequency list

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 55/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

to which the BTS will be attached. Relevant when RF hopping


is used. See chapter Mobile Allocation Frequency List.
Object class: BTS
GSM reference: No ref.
Option: -
Release: before S4
Modification: If BTS is RF hopping, then BTS must be locked
Restriction: -
MML name: mobile allocation frequency list (MAL)
MML range: 0..128 (the value 0 detaches the BTS from any
mobile allocation frequency list)
MML default: No MA-list attached
MML command: EQA,EQO
NMS GUI name: Used Mobile Allocation
NMS GUI range: Not Assigned; Assigned ID(1..128)
NMS GUI dialog name: BTS Parameter Window
NMS DB name: used_mobile_alloc_list_id
NMS DB range: 0..128
NMS DB mapping: Assigned ID (1..128), Not Assigned (0)

6.3 Power Control

Table 8. Example PC parameters for RF FH network.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 56/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

GROUP EXPLANATION Q3 NAME RANGE UNIT Setting


General Enable BTS pow er control pow erCtrlEnabled Yes / No Yes
Min time interval betw een PC's pow erControlInterval 0 ... 31 sec 1
Pow er increase step size pow erIncrStepsize 2,4 or 6 dB 2
Pow er decrease step size pow erRedStepsize 2 or 4 dB 2
BS tx max pw r preattenuation rfMaxPow erReduction 0 ... 12 dB 0
optional ave UL signal quality (BER)< 0.2 % pw rDecrLimitBand0 0 ... 38 dB 38
ave UL signal quality (BER) 0.2 % - 0.4 % pw rDecrLimitBand1 0 ... 38 dB 20
ave UL signal quality (BER) > 0.4 % pw rDecrLimitBand2 0 ... 38 dB 8
pw rDecrQualFactor 0 / 1 1
optional MS Pow er optimisation after HO msPw rOptLev -110 ... -47/ N dBm -79
BTS pow er range Max attenuation bsTxPw rMin 0 ... 30 dB 30
Min attenuation bsTxPw rMax 0 ... 30 dB 0
Averaging w indow s pcAveragingLevDL 1 ... 32 SACCH 1
w eighting 1 ... 3 1
pcAveragingLevUL 1 ... 32 SACCH 1
w eighting 1 ... 3 1
pcAveragingQualDL 1 ... 32 SACCH 1
w eighting 1 ... 3 1
pcAveragingQualUL 1 ... 32 SACCH 1
w eighting 1 ... 3 1
Thresholds pcLow erThresholdsLevDL -110 ... -47 dBm -101
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
pcLow erThresholdsLevUL -110 ... -47 dBm -101
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
pcLow erThresholdsQualDL 0 ... 7 4
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
pcLow erThresholdsQualUL 0 ... 7 4
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
pcUpperThresholdsLevDL -110 ... -47 dBm -47
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
pcUpperThresholdsLevUL -110 ... -47 dBm -47
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
pcUpperThresholdsQualDL 0 ... 7 1
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
pcUpperThresholdsQualUL 0 ... 7 1
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 57/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

6.4 Handover

Table 9. Example HO parameters for FH network utilising aggressive power control.


GROUP EXPLANATION Q3 NAME RAN UNIT Setting
GE
Averaging adjacent Averaging window size for adj cells averagingWindowSizeAdjCell 1 ... 32 SACCH 8
cells Number of zero results allowed numberOfZeroResults 0 ... 7 7
Adj cells averaging: 6 best or 32 allAdjacentCellsAveraged Yes / No No
Averaging Method enaFastAveCallSetup Yes / No No
enaFastAveHo Yes / No No
enaFastAvePC Yes / No Yes
Minimum Intervals minIntBetweenUnsuccHoAttempt 0 ... 30 sec 3
minIntBetweenHoReq 0 ... 30 sec 5
Periodic Handovers hoPeriodPBGT 0 ... 63 SACCH 6
HoPeriodUmbrella 0 ... 63 SACCH 6
HO types allowed enableIntraHoInterfUL Yes / No Yes
enableIntraHoInterfDL Yes / No Yes
enablePwrBudgetHandover Yes / No Yes
enableUmbrellaHandover Yes / No No
enableMSDistanceProcess Yes / No No
enableSDCCHHandover Yes / No Yes
Margins Enable HO margin for Lev and Qual enableHoMarginLevQual Yes / No Yes
hoMarginPBGT -24 ... 63 dB 4
hoMarginLev -24 ... 24 dB 3
hoMarginQual -24 ... 24 dB 0
Averaging windows hoAveragingLevDL 1 ... 32 SACCH 6
and weighting values weighting 1 ... 3 1
hoAveragingLevUL 1 ... 32 SACCH 6
weighting 1 ... 3 1
hoAveragingQualDL 1 ... 32 SACCH 1
weighting 1 ... 3 1
hoAveragingQualUL 1 ... 32 SACCH 1
weighting 1 ... 3 1
msDistanceAveragingParam 1 ... 32 SACCH 10
msSpeedAveraging 1 ... 32 SACCH 4
Thresholds hoThresholdsLevDL -110 ... -47 dBm -95
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
hoThresholdsLevUL -110 ... -47 dBm -95
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
hoThresholdsQualDL 0 ... 7 5
px 1 ... 32 3
nx 1 ... 32 4
hoThresholdsQualUL 0 ... 7 5
px 1 ... 32 3
nx 1 ... 32 4
hoThresholdsInterferenceDL -110 ... -47 dBm -85
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
hoThresholdsInterferenceUL -110 ... -47 dBm -85
px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1
msDistanceHoThresholdParam 0 ... 63 TA 63

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 58/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

px 1 ... 32 1
nx 1 ... 32 1

6.5 DTX

6.5.1 Uplink DTX

The status of the uplink DTX can be defined in miscellaneous BTS parameters in BSC. The mode
of the MS for using the discontinuous transmission (DTX) can be selected in DTX parameter as
following:

0 - MS may use DTX


1 - MS shall use DTX
2 - MS shall not use DTX.

The default for the parameter is 1, meaning that the mobile have to use DTX. Only a few operators
in the world use the value 0, where the default setting of the mobile chooses the uplink DTX mode.

6.5.2 Downlink DTX

The status of the downlink DTX can be defined in BTS parameters of MSC. This DTX parameter
can receive one of the following values:

ON – Downlink DTX enabled by MSC

OFF – Downlink DTX disabled by MSC.

The current default value for the parameter is OFF. If the activation of the downlink DTX doesn’t
cause any special harm for the functioning of the network, the usage of the DTX function is
recommendable.

Here is one example of BTS parameters in MSC including DTX function:

DX 220 DX2x0-LAB 1990-11-1 10:28:56

BASE TRANSCEIVER STATION BTS3 NUMBER 00456 IS CREATED

BSC NAME : - NUMBER :-


LA NAME :LAREA3 LAC :00004
CELL IDENTITY (CI) :00003
BTS ADMINISTRATIVE STATE :LOCKED

ROUTING ZONE (RZ) :-


TARIFF AREA (TA) :000
DOWNLINK DTX DISABLED BY MSC (DTX) :OFF , etc…

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 59/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

7. OPTIMISATION

7.1 Tools for Network Monitoring

The following tools for example can be used for monitoring the quality and the traffic of the network:
• Cell Doctor version 1.18.41 or later in NMS/2000. The tool extracts data in text format from the
database.
• NDW can be used for Quality / traffic monitoring. It uses the database of NMS/2000.
• TIM / TOM monitoring SW can be used for indoor / outdoor drive tests
• A special DL FER monitoring tool can be used internally, consisting of a Nokia 8110i with SW,
a laptop with FMON and postprocessing SW
• Ericsson TEMS monitoring tool can be used for the normal drive tests and DL FER monitoring

7.2 KPIs for Hopping Network

The KPIs to analyse the performance and the quality of the network are basically the same than in the
non-hopping network. Only the RXQUAL and Drop Call Rate measures differ from the non-
hopping case. Worse RXQUAL can be tolerated when FH is used. Drop call rate doesn’t neither
correlate directly to the quality, since with FH the drop call rate tends to stay low eventhough the
subjective speech quality were not anymore acceptable.

New quality measures are under development and in testing phase to measure the subjective speech
quality more accurately. In the following Table, the normal BSS and NSS level KPIs are presented.
These KPIs are more informational than Nokia’s official values!

With FH, the criteria for the cumulative uplink and downlink quality distribution could be the
following:

Table 10. KPIs for the uplink and the downlink RXQUAL distribution.
BSS related indicators Short term criteria Long term criteria
Uplink quality distribution 0…5, 95% 0…5, 98%
Downlink quality distribution 0…5, 95% 0…5, 98%

Table 11. BSS and NSS related KPIs.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 60/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

BSS Related Short Long


Indicators criteria
term criteria
term
TCH Availability [%], 24h 95 99*
SDCCH Success Ratio [%], 95 97
24h Success Ratio [%],
TCH 95 97
24h Setup Success Rate [%],
Call 90 95
24h
SDCCH Blocking [%], cell 0.5 0.2
BH Call Blocking [%], cell
TCH 5 2
BH HO Blocking [%], cell
TCH TBD TBD
BH
Access Grant Blocking [%], cell 0 0
BH Drop Ratio [%],
TCH 5 3
24h
Cumulative UL Quality distribution, 0… 4, 95 0… 4, 98
24h
Cumulative DL Quality distribution, % 4, 95
0… % 4, 98
0…
24h
Average Interference Band, % TBD % TBD
24h Controlled Outgoing HO Success [%],
BSC 93 97
24h Controlled Outgoing HO Success [%] ,
MSC 90 95
24h Cell HO Success [%],
Intra 96 99
24h of BTSs Exceeding 5% Blocking in BH [%],
Ratio
24h Success Rate,
SMS 95 98
24h objects which are Locked by User are counted as non available and will reduce the availability value.
*Note,

NSS Related Short Long


Indicators criteria
term criteria
term
Intra MSC HO Success Ratio 91 96
[%] MSC HO Success Ratio
Inter 85 94
[%]
Paging Success Ratio TBD TBD
[%]
Technically Successful Calls TBD TBD
[%] CGR Availability [%]
MSC 100 100
PSTN CGR Availability 100 100
[%] CGR Availability [%]
A-if 100 100
VMS CGR Availability [%] 100 100
MSC CGR Blocking [%], 1 0.1
BH
PSTN CGR Blocking [%], 1 0.1
BH CGR Blocking [%], BH
A-if 1 0.1
VMS CGR Blocking [%], 1 0.1
BH VLR LU Success Ratio for Home Subscriber
Intra 97 99
[%] VLR LU Success Ratio for Roaming Subscriber
Intra 97 99
[%] VLR LU Success Ratio for Home Subscriber
Inter 96 98
[%] VLR LU Success Ratio for Roaming Subscriber
Inter 90 95
[%]
Periodic LU Success Ratio 97 99
[%]
Home Subscriber LU Success ratio when visiting TBD TBD
PLMN
different
Home Subscriber LU Success ratio when coming TBD TBD
from different PLMN
Home

General Criteria
Number of alarmsStatistics
per Network Element, exc. Eki
transmission
Number of transmission alarms per Eki
node
Customer complaints of NW < 1/1000
problems complaints of
Customer subscriber/day
< 1/1000
billing subscriber/year

7.3 RXQUAL in FH Networks

Frequency hopping causes some changes in the RXQUAL distribution. Also, there are some
differences in a way the RXQUAL distribution should be interpreted.

The Frame Erasure Ratio (FER) is a ratio of discarded speech frames compared to all the received
speech frames. A speech frame is generally discarded if after the decoding and error correction
process any of the category 1a bits is found to be changed based on the three parity bits following
them in a speech frame.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 61/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

he FER is a measure of how successfully the speech frame was received after the error correction
process and it is thus a better indication of the subjective speech quality compared to the RXQUAL
which gives an estimate of the link quality in terms of BER. The RXQUAL doesn’t indicate how the
bit errors were distributed in a speech frame. The bit error distribution affects the ability of the
channel decoding to correct the errors.

The following table gives an idea of the correlation between RXQUAL and FER and between
subjective speech quality and different FER classes.

Table 12. RXQUAL vs. FER comparison according to the laboratory tests.

Subjective quality, laboratory tests

Steady quality/FER value (fast mobile or frequency hopping)

RXqual FER
0-4 good 0 - 4% good
5 slightly degraded 4 - 15% slightly degraded
6 degraded 15 - 35% degraded
7 useless >35% useless
The relation of downlink FER and RXQUAL was measured during a FH trial. The relation is
clearly different in the hopping case compared to the non-hopping case. The distributions of FER in
each RXQUAL class are presented in Figure 7-43 and Figure 7-44. One clear observation can be
made; in the non-hopping case there are significant amount of samples indicating deteriorated quality
(FER>10%) in RXQUAL class 5 while in the hopping case the significant quality deterioration
(FER>10%) happens in RXQUAL class 6. Thus, it may be concluded that in the frequency hopping
networks significant quality deterioration starts at RXQUAL class 6 while in non-hopping network
this happens at RXQUAL class 5.

This difference is a consequence of interference and frequency diversities that affect the frequency
hopping network. Because of these effects, the interference or low signal strength tend to occur
randomly, while in a non-hopping network it is probable that interference or low field strength will
affect several consecutive bursts making it harder for the error correction to actually correct errors.
The successful error correction leads to less erased frames and thus improves the FER.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 62/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

DL FER / RXQUAL (No hopping)

100.00 %

90.00 %

80.00 %

70.00 %

60.00 % Q7
Q6
50.00 %
Q5
40.00 %
Q4
30.00 % RXQUAL
Q3
20.00 % Q2
10.00 %
Q1
0.00 %
Q0
"0-1" "1-5" "5-10" "10- "15-
15" 100"
FER %

Figure 7-43. Measured relation of FER and RXQUAL in a non-hopping case.

DL FER / RXQUAL (ave 3.6 hopping carriers / cell)

100.00 %

90.00 %

80.00 %

70.00 %

60.00 % Q7
Q6
50.00 %
Q5
40.00 %
Q4
30.00 % RXQUAL
Q3
20.00 % Q2
10.00 %
Q1
0.00 %
Q0
"0-1" "1-5" "5-10" "10- "15-
15" 100"
FER %

Figure 7-44. Measured relation of FER and RXQUAL in frequency hopping case.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 63/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

This improvement of FER means that the higher RXQUAL values may be allowed in a frequency
hopping network. RXQUAL thresholds are used in the handover and power control decisions.
Because of the improvement in the relative reception performance on the RXQUAL classes 4-6, the
RXQUAL thresholds affecting handover and power control decisions should be set higher in a
network using frequency hopping network. In a frequency hopping network RXQUAL classes 0-5
are indicating good quality.

Typically, the share of the RXQUAL classes 6 and 7 may increase after FH is switched on, even if
no other changes have been made. This may seem to be surprising since it is expected that frequency
hopping improves the network quality. However, in most cases the quality is actually improved, but
the improvement is more visible in the call success ratio. The improved tolerance against interference
and low field strength in FH network means that it is less likely that the decoding of SACCH frames
fails causing increment in the radio link timeout counter. Thus, it is less likely that a call is dropped
because of the radio link timeout. Instead, the calls generating high RXQUAL samples tend to stay
on. This may lead to increase in the share of RXQUAL 6-7. However, at the same time the call
success rate is significantly improved.

In the Figure 7-45, there are presented some trial results of a DL RXQUAL distribution with different
frequency allocation reuse patterns. As can be seen from the figures, the tighter the reuse becomes,
the less samples fall in quality class 0 and more samples fall in quality classes 1-6. There’s bigger
difference in downlink than in uplink direction.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 64/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 65/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 66/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 67/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

DL RXQUAL Distribution

100.00

90.00

80.00

70.00

60.00 No FH
Percentage (%)

1/3 pure
50.00
1/3 heuris tic
40.00 1/1
30.00

20.00

10.00

0.00
q0 q1 q2 q3 q4 q5 q6 q7
Qu ality C las s e s

Figure 7-45. DL RXQUAL distribution of a trial with different frequency allocation reuse
patterns (no FH, 1/1, 1/3 fixed, 1/3 heuristic allocation)

UL RXQUAL Distribution

100.00

90.00

80.00

70.00

60.00 No FH
Percentage (%)

1/3 pure
50.00
1/3 heuristic

40.00 1/1

30.00

20.00

10.00

0.00
q0 q1 q2 q3 q4 q5 q6 q7
Quality Classes

Figure 7-46. UL RXQUAL distribution of a trial with different frequency allocation reuse
patterns (no FH, 1/1, 1/3 fixed, 1/3 heuristic allocation)

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 68/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Frequency hopping forces each call to use all the frequencies in the hopping sequence. If some of
those frequencies are more interfered than others, it may happen that after FH is switched on the
quality of the calls suffers. When FH is not used, the calls tend to be allocated to the TRXs using
interference free carriers (the TRX and the time slot are selected based on the UL idle channel
interference measurement). Especially outside the busy hours, it is probable that time slots are always
available on the TRXs having interference free carriers. Frequency hopping forces all the calls to
use all the frequencies in the hopping sequence. This means that the interfered frequencies are
always used as much as the interference free frequencies. This is likely to lead to worse quality
outside the busy hours. During the busy hours in a non-hopping case, some of the calls have to be
allocated to a TRX using interfered frequency, because interference free TRXs may be full. These
calls are likely to experience significantly worse quality. The frequency hopping tends to average the
quality, so in the frequency hopping case all the calls experience average quality instead of some very
high quality calls and some very low quality calls. It is thus important to compare only busy hour
statistics and to keep in mind that the interference problems may not show up outside the busy hours
in the non-hopping case, while in the FH case the effect of interference is always present.

Note! In BB FH and RF FH case the frequency specific RXQUAL cannot be measured anymore. The
quality is averaged over the hopping sequence.

7.4 Idle Channel Interference Measurement

When a new call is established or a handover is performed, the BSC selects the TRX and the time
slot for the traffic channel based on the idle channel interference measurements. The frequency
hopping has a significant effect on the idle channel interference measurement results.

When the frequency hopping is used, the frequency of a hopping logical channel is changed about
217 times in a second. The frequency of the idle time slots changes according to the same sequence.

In a case of the random hopping, this means that the measured idle channel interference is likely
to be the same for all the TRXs that use the same MA-list. If the interference is averaged over
more than one SACCH frame, the averaging effect is even stronger. However, normally the
interferers are mobiles located in interfering cells. In this case, there are probably differences in the
measured idle channel interferences between different time slots in the cell. This happens,
because the interfering mobiles are only transmitting during the time slot that has been allocated to
them. This is illustrated in Figure 7-47.

If the cyclic hopping sequence is used, there might occur differences on the measured idle channel
interference levels between the TRXs on the same time slot as explained in the following section.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 69/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Idle channel
interference level RTSL
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
Low
TRX 1

TRX 2
f1, f2, f3
High TRX 3

Interfering
mobiles using
Path loss to the the same
interfered BTS
frequencies:
f1, f2, f3

Timeslot #

Figure 7-47. Idle channel interference in a case of the random RF hopping.

7.5 Cyclic and Random Hopping Sequences

If the cyclic hopping mode is used, the interference caused by a mobile is not necessarily spread
evenly on all the hopping TRXs as can be seen in Figure 7-48. If the random hopping sequences are
used, interference is always evenly spread on all the TRXs using the same MA-list as presented in
Figure 7-49. The distribution of interference presented in this section is the same for both uplink and
downlink directions.

Base station
TDMA frames 6 frequencies
TRX 1 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18

TRX 2 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1

TRX 3 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4

TRX 4 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7

TRX 5 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11

TRX 6 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15 18 1 4 7 11 15

interference
Mobile 3 frequencies
1 8 15 1 8 15 1 8 15 1 8 15 1 8 15 1 8 15

Figure 7-48. Example of interference distribution in one cyclic hopping case.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 70/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Base station
TDMA frames

TRX 1 5 2 1 4 1 6 1 4 3 4 2 5 5 4 3 4 1 2 1 6 3 2 2 6

TRX 2 6 3 2 5 2 1 2 5 4 5 3 6 6 5 4 5 2 3 2 1 4 3 3 1

TRX 3 1 4 3 6 3 2 3 6 5 6 4 1 1 6 5 6 3 4 3 2 5 4 4 2
2 5 4 1 4 3 4 1 6 1 5 2 2 1 6 1 4 5 4 3 6 5 5 3
6 frequencies
TRX 4
TRX 5 3 6 5 2 5 4 5 2 1 2 6 3 3 2 1 2 5 6 5 4 1 6 6 4
TRX 6 4 1 6 3 6 5 6 3 2 3 1 4 4 3 2 3 6 1 6 5 2 1 1 5

interference
Mobile

3 5 1 1 2 1 4 2 6 3 3 4 1 2 3 3 1 6 2 2 5 3 5 5 6 frequencies
Figure 7-49. Interference distribution when random hopping sequences are used.

The drawback of the cyclic hopping is that the interference coming from one interferer may affect
only some of the TRXs as seen in Figure 7-48. This limits the number of interferers and compromises
the interference diversity. For this reason, it is recommended that cyclic hopping sequences are
not used in the areas where the network is interference limited.

Cyclic:
• In the areas where the interference is NOT a problem (low traffic areas)

Random:
• In the areas where the interference is a problem (high traffic areas)

Figure 7-50. Guide to choose between cyclic and random hopping sequences.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 71/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Frequency hopping makes it possible to change the interference sources for each TDMA frame. The
result of this is a beneficial effect called interference diversity, which was presented in Section 2.1.6.
The more different interferers the link has, the better interference is averaged and the better the
interference diversity gain. Time division used in the GSM systems limits the interference diversity.
Because of the TDMA principle, the interference diversity is only possible among the mobiles that
share the same time instant for transmission. However, the base stations that are located on different
sites, are not usually synchronised. This means that the time slots may be partially overlapping each
other as presented in Figure 7-51. Thus, the interference from one interfering cell may consist two
interference sources (mobiles) in uplink direction or two different power levels in downlink direction
if downlink power control is used. This enhances interference diversity. The degree of overlapping in
non-synchronised network is random but constant between any non-synchronised cell pair and it may
be anything between 50 % and 100 % as presented in Figure 7-52.
RTSL
5 6 7 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 0 1 2 3 4
Serving cell

Interfering cell
0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7
RTSL

Figure 7-51. Interference from non-synchronised cell.

Serving cell

50% 50% 100%

Interfering cell

Figure 7-52. The two extreme cases: 50 % and 100 % overlapping of bursts.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 72/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

7.6 Intracell Handover

The lack of synchronisation has a positive effect on the interference diversity. However, interference
is still averaged only between the mobiles sharing the same time instant for transmission. Because of
this, the intracell handover to another time slot changes the interference sources and is feasible if the
overall interference situation in the target time slot is better. During busy hours when the traffic in
the network is at the maximum, it is likely that there are no significantly better time slots available.
Thus, significant gain can not be accomplished by intracell handover to another time slot.
Normally the intracell handover is triggered by poor RXQUAL. In order to avoid unnecessary
intracell handovers, the RXQUAL threshold for intracell handover should be set so high that the
handover is not attempted before the quality of the call is seriously threatened. Example HO
parameters are presented in Table 9.

7.7 Power Control

Power control has been found to improve the quality in FH networks and thus, it is recommended to
be used in both UL and DL directions. Power control is the most effective when the used TX
power level is kept as low as possible while still maintaining an acceptable link quality. To achieve
this, a fast and mainly RXQUAL driven power control is recommended.

In order to make the PC as fast as possible, the measurement averaging in BTS should be disabled
and aggressive power control parameters should be used. Example PC parameters are presented in
Table 8.

7.7.1 Downlink Power Control with BB Hopping

In the baseband hopping the BCCH TRX is included in the hopping sequence. This means that
occasionally some bursts are transmitted by the BCCH TRX using the time slots from 1 to 7. The
GSM specifications require that the BCCH TRX must transmit continuously and always at the full
power. This is required, because the BCCH frequencies are used in the downlink level measurements
of the neighboring cells by the mobiles. Consequently, if the downlink power control is used, the
downlink signal level may fluctuate dramatically since the BCCH TRX is not using the power
control. This may cause serious problems in the mobile receiver if the mobile is located close to the
cell site. To avoid such problems, the maximum base station power decrease (bsTxPowerMin)
should be limited to 10 - 15 dB when downlink power control is used together with baseband
hopping.

7.8 Handover Control

Since FH and an aggressive power control cause significant changes in the RXQUAL distribution,
the RXQUAL thresholds triggering handovers have to be adjusted accordingly. Normally, the
RXQUAL thresholds have to be increased by 1 or 2 classes (RXQUAL 4 -> RXQUAL 5). Also
the HO speed should be fast enough but still slower than the PC speed, to ensure that the PC will
become triggered before HO. An example of HO parameters for FH networks utilising aggressive
power control are presented in Table 9.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 73/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

7.9 HSN Planning with Random Hopping

The HSN defines the used FH sequence. The HSN value 0 means cyclic hopping and the values from
1 to 63 mean different random hopping sequences.

In random hopping case, the same HSNs should be used in different cells inside the site. Thus, if a
common MA list is shared inside the site, the frequency collisions can be avoided.
Neighboring sites should use different HSNs, especially those sites, which use common
frequencies. It ensures the collisions to happen randomly between the sites.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 74/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

8. PLANNING CASES

8.1 Planning Case 1: Single MA-list

In this example a single MA-list implementation is planned for a small network consisting of 7 sites
and 16 sectorised cells. The benefit in single MA-list implementation is that no frequency planning is
required, because each cell has the same MA-list containing all the allocated frequencies. Since
fractional loading is required, only RF hopping can be used. In order to avoid interference between
the cells of the same site, a MAIO plan is made for each site. The number of TRXs can be
maximum 12 TRXs per site.

8.1.1 Frequency Planning

Although actual frequency plan is not needed, it must be checked that the used frequency band is
sufficient to provide acceptable quality. Also in some cases the differences in cell level traffic
distributions may require that some frequencies are reserved to be used only in the highly loaded
cells.
Ho p p in g
S ite Ce ll T RX co u n t T RX s
A 1 2 1
2 3 2
B 1 4 3
C 1 4 3
2 4 3
3 3 2
D 1 3 2
2 4 3
3 2 1
E 1 3 2
2 4 3
F 1 4 3
2 3 2
3 4 3
G 1 4 3
2 3 2

Ave ra g e h o p p in g T RX s/ce ll : 2.4

Figure 8-53. Network layout and TRX configurations.

The BCCH frequency plan is made separately and it is not considered here. On the average there are
2.4 hopping TRXs per cell in the example network. 21 frequencies are to be allocated to the hopping
TRXs. The effective reuse on the frequency hopping TRXs can be calculated by using Equation (5.1)
as follows:

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 75/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

21
Reff = = 8 .8
2 .4

Effective reuse of 8.8 is reasonable for frequency hopping network and it can be expected that the
network will have good quality, see Table 6.

In order to keep the collision probability low enough, it is recommended that the average frequency
load caused by each cell in the network doesn’t exceed 8 %. The load distribution in the network is
calculated by using Equations (5.3), (5.4) and (5.5). Here, also the BCCH TRX is included in the
traffic estimations.
T ra ffic a t Nu m b e r o f F ra ctio n a l F re q u e n cy
S ite Ce ll 2% b lo ckin g tim e slo ts HW lo a d lo a d lo a d
A 1 9.8 16 61.4 % 4.8 % 2.9 %
2 16.6 24 69.3 % 9.5 % 6.6 %
B 1 23.7 32 74.1 % 14.3 % 10.6 %
C 1 23.7 32 74.1 % 14.3 % 10.6 %
2 23.7 32 74.1 % 14.3 % 10.6 %
3 16.6 24 69.3 % 9.5 % 6.6 %
D 1 16.6 24 69.3 % 9.5 % 6.6 %
2 23.7 32 74.1 % 14.3 % 10.6 %
3 9.8 16 61.4 % 4.8 % 2.9 %
E 1 16.6 24 69.3 % 9.5 % 6.6 %
2 23.7 32 74.1 % 14.3 % 10.6 %
F 1 23.7 32 74.1 % 14.3 % 10.6 %
2 16.6 24 69.3 % 9.5 % 6.6 %
3 23.7 32 74.1 % 14.3 % 10.6 %
G 1 23.7 32 74.1 % 14.3 % 10.6 %
2 16.6 24 69.3 % 9.5 % 6.6 %

Ave ra g e fre q u e n cy lo a d : 8.1 %

Figure 8-54. Load calculations.

The average frequency load in the network is 8.1 %. This is acceptable, because it is only very
slightly above the 8 % recommendation. The maximum frequency load is 10.6 %. This doesn’t
exceed the average frequency load significantly. If the maximum frequency load exceeded 13 % -14
%, it might make sense to reserve some extra frequencies that would be used only on the highly
loaded cells. By doing this, the frequency load distribution in the network can be kept more even.
Cells causing high frequency loads tend to deteriorate the quality in the neighboring cells.

8.1.2 MAIO Planning

Since all the cells of a sectorised site are usually controlled by the same BCF, they are frame
synchronised. This means that the TDMA frame number is always the same in the sectors of one site.
Since the hopping sequence is derived from the HSN and the TDMA frame number, the
synchronisation makes it possible avoid interference between the sectors of one site.

To prevent intra site and intra cell interference the following requirements have to be fulfilled:

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 76/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

• All the sectors of one site have to controlled by the same BCF
• All the sectors of one site have to use the same HSN
• MAIO planning have to be properly made

In order to guarantee interference diversity, a different HSN should be used in the different sites
located in the same area.

MAIO planning should be done for each site. The HSN parameter has to be defined for each site and
MAIOoffset and MAIOstep for each cell. These parameters and their functionality are presented in
Section 1. MAIOstep defines the channel separation between the TRXs of the same cell. It is thus
used to guarantee that intra cell interference doesn’t occur. MAIOoffset is used to control the
channel separations between the sectors of the same site. However, MAIOoffseet doesn’t directly
define the channel separation between the cells. Instead it defines the MAIO of the first hopping TRX
of the cell.

At first it should be checked that proper channel separations are possible with allocated frequency
band. The minimum requirement for channel separation between sectors is 1. However, in order to
avoid constant adjacent channel interference between the sectors of the same site, a separation of 2 is
highly recommended. In order to avoid intra cell interference, the channel separation between the
TRXs of the same cell should be at least 2. Preferably the separation should be 3 or more,
especially if UL power control is not used. In this case the goal is to have a minimum channel
separation of 2 between the sectors and 3 between the TRXs of the same cell. To check if that is
possible with the current frequency band of 21 carriers, Equation (5.10) is used. The site to be
investigated is the site with biggest TRX configurations that is in this case site C having 3 sectors and
8 hopping TRXs.

min N freqs / site = ( N TRX / site − N cell / site ) ⋅ MAIOstep + N cell / site ⋅ S


→(8 − 3) ⋅ 3 + 3 ⋅ 2 = 21

As a result, it can be seen that the frequency band of 21 carriers is just enough to allow the
implementation of wanted channel separations even in the site with the biggest TRX configurations.

The MAIO plan is now made for the Site C by using MAIOstep 3 and by selecting the MAIOoffset
parameters for the sectors so that the channel (=MAIO) separation of 2 is realised between the
sectors. Example MAIO plans are presented in the following pictures.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 77/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

MAI value for each TDMA frame is calculated by BTS


and MS by using HSN and TDMA frame number
MAIO Offset determines the
MAIO of the first hopping
TRX in each sector

Site C

The sectors share


the same HSN Transmitted frequencies for each TRX
during each TDMA frame
MAIOs for the rest of the hopping TRXs
are determined by adding MAIO Step to No co- or adjacent channel
the MAIO of the previous hopping TRX interference between sectors

Figure 8-55. Example of MAIO planning.

Site D

Site F

Site G

Figure 8-56. Example MAIO plans.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 78/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Table 13. Parameters for each cell in the example network.


Site Cell TRX HSN MAIOoffset MAIOstep
count
A 1 2 2 0 3
2 3 2 8 3
B 1 4 5 0 3
C 1 4 6 0 3
2 4 6 8 3
3 3 6 16 3
D 1 3 7 0 3
2 4 7 8 3
3 2 7 16 3
E 1 3 4 0 3
2 4 4 8 3
F 1 4 3 0 3
2 3 3 8 3
3 4 3 13 3
G 1 4 1 0 3
2 3 1 8 3

If more TRXs are later added, it should me made sure that the MAIO plan for that site is still valid.
Failure to do so may lead to continuous co- or adjacent channel interference between the TRXs of the
site.

8.2 Planning Case 2: RF FH with Fractional Loading (FAR 3 – 5)

The network in this case is the same as in the first planning case. The goal is to achieve the highest
capacity by employing very tight frequency reuse. Low effective frequency reuse is possible because
each cell has enough frequencies in the hopping sequence to provide good frequency hopping gain
and the usage of frequencies can be planned so that the worst potential interferers do not use the same
frequency. Also power control is to be used both in uplink and in downlink.

The target frequency allocation reuse is between 3 and 5, meaning that the frequencies are repeated
in every 3 to 5 cells. This makes it possible to avoid interference between the strongest interferers.
The frequency allocation can be done by utilising a frequency allocation tool that supports RF
hopping with fractional loading, such as NPS/X 3.3.

8.2.1 Defining the Frequency Band and the Number of Frequencies Needed in Each Cell

The BCCH frequency plan is made separately and it is not considered here. On the average there are
2.4 hopping TRXs per cell in the example network. In order to end up with an effective reuse of 8, 19
frequencies are to be allocated to the hopping TRXs. The effective reuse on the frequency hopping
TRXs can be calculated by using Equation (5.1) as follows:

19
Reff = = 7 .9
2 .4

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 79/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Effective reuse of 7.9 is quite low, but it can be expected that with implementation of frequency
allocation reuse of 3 to 5 the network will have acceptable quality provided that the network model in
the frequency allocation tool is accurate. However, the minimum achievable reuse also depends very
much on the environment and the network layout. For example, if the antennas in the urban
environment are located too high so that the isolation between the interfering cells provided by the
surrounding environment is not exploited, a higher effective reuse may have to be used in order to
maintain good quality.

As a rule of thumb, the frequency load caused by each cell should range from 30 % to 50 % as
the frequency allocation reuse ranges from 3 to 5, see Table 6. This is used as a basis when the
number of frequencies to be allocated in each cell is defined. In the following figure, MA-list length
definitions are made for the example network. Also the BCCH TRX is included in the traffic
calculation.
Ho p p in g T ra ffic a t Nu m b e r o f M A list F ra ctio n a l F re q u e n cy
S ite Ce ll T RX co u n t TRX s 2% b lockin g tim e slo ts HW lo a d le n g th lo a d lo a d
A 1 2 1 9.8 16 61.4 % 3 33.3 % 20.5 %
2 3 2 16.6 24 69.3 % 4 50.0 % 34.6 %
B 1 4 3 23.7 32 74.1 % 6 50.0 % 37.1 %
C 1 4 3 23.7 32 74.1 % 6 50.0 % 37.1 %
2 4 3 23.7 32 74.1 % 6 50.0 % 37.1 %
3 3 2 16.6 24 69.3 % 4 50.0 % 34.6 %
D 1 3 2 16.6 24 69.3 % 4 50.0 % 34.6 %
2 4 3 23.7 32 74.1 % 6 50.0 % 37.1 %
3 2 1 9.8 16 61.4 % 3 33.3 % 20.5 %
E 1 3 2 16.6 24 69.3 % 4 50.0 % 34.6 %
2 4 3 23.7 32 74.1 % 6 50.0 % 37.1 %
F 1 4 3 23.7 32 74.1 % 6 50.0 % 37.1 %
2 3 2 16.6 24 69.3 % 4 50.0 % 34.6 %
3 4 3 23.7 32 74.1 % 6 50.0 % 37.1 %
G 1 4 3 23.7 32 74.1 % 6 50.0 % 37.1 %
2 3 2 16.6 24 69.3 % 4 50.0 % 34.6 %

Ave ra g e M A list le n g th : 4.9

Ave ra g e fre q u e n cy lo a d : 34.1 %

Effective reuse = 19 frequencies / 2.4 hopping TRXs per cell = 7.9 OK Average frequency load 34.1 %
(max. 37.1 %) OK
Frequency allocation reuse = 19 frequencies / 4.9 FH freqs per cell = 3.9 OK

Figure 8-57. Load and reuse calculations.

In this example, the MA-list lengths were selected so that the frequency load caused by each cell
falls between 30 % and 40 %. However, the minimum length was 3 in order to guarantee sufficient
FH gains. The resulting average MA-list length is 4.9 carriers per cell. The frequency allocation
reuse can now be calculated by using Equation (5.2) as follows:

19
FAR = = 3.9
4.9

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 80/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

The average frequency load is 34.1 %. In most cases this should provide low enough collision
probability for a network having a frequency allocation reuse 3.9. Actually, it might even be possible
to reduce the frequency band a little bit. With 17 carriers the frequency allocation reuse would reduce
to 3.47. This would match the rule of thumb perfectly, as we would now have a frequency load of
34.1 % and frequency allocation reuse 3.47. The effective reuse with 17 carriers would be 7.1.
Whether the quality will still be acceptable depends on the quality of the frequency plan as well as
the network layout and surrounding environment.

8.2.2 Frequency Allocation and Analysis

Now, once the number of frequencies to be allocated for each cell is defined, the allocation should be
performed with help of an frequency allocation tool that supports fractional loading and is able to
minimise the interference in the network such as NPS/X 3.3.

The allocation parameters can be similar as in the normal non-hopping case. The minimum channel
separation between the frequencies in the MA-list should be at least one carrier in order to avoid
intracell adjacent channel interference. Preferably the separation of two should be used unless that
requirement significantly degrades the allocation result (=increases the resulting value of the cost
function). However, if the fractional load on a cell is 50 % or less, then it is advantageous to allow
consecutive frequencies in the MA-list and set the MAIOstep parameter to 2 in that cell. The
MAIOstep of 2 ensures that adjacent carriers are not used at the same time. Thus, adjacent channel
interference is prevented. The removal of the intra cell channel separation requirement makes it
possible for the allocation tool to find a better allocation that minimises the interference more
effectively. The difference can be so significant, that it might make sense to deliberately force the
fractional load to 50 % or less so that the intracell separation requirement can be removed. An
example of how intra cell adjacent channel interference is avoided is presented in the following
figure.

Consecutive carriers
allowed in the MA lists
Fractional load in every sector is 50% or less
(fractional load = MAL_length / Nb_TRX)

MAIOstep is set to 2 No intra cell adjacent


channel interference!

Figure 8-58. Example of MAIO planning.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 81/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Adjacent channels may be allowed between the sectors of the same site especially if all of them are
not adjacent to each other. The interference diversity and fractional loading ensures that even if
adjacent channel interference occurs, it won’t be continuous and thus its effect on the quality is
reduced.

Since frequency sharing is not used in this case, all the cells in one area using the same frequency
band should have a different HSN in order to maximise interference diversity.

Since fractional loading is used, it is very difficult to analyze the frequency plan with conventional
C/I analysis. Instead, more advanced analysis tool such as the RXQUAL analysis tool available in
NPS/X 3.2 and 3.3 should be used. The RXQUAL tool estimates the typical RXQUAL for every
pixel on the digital map. It supports frequency hopping and fractional loading. The RXQUAL
analysis tool is suitable for comparing different frequency allocations and for finding the locations
of possible interference spots where the quality is likely to be the worst. However, the RXQUAL
analysis tool is sensitive to the fractional loading! The lower the fractional load, the better quality
seem to be predicted even when it is likely that the quality in reality should be worse. Because of this,
the tool is only suitable to analysing different frequency plans while the fractional loading (=MA-list
lengths) remain the same. It should also be noted that the indicated RXQUAL doesn’t necessarily
correspond to the actual measured RXQUAL but is still gives an indication of the overall quality of
the frequency plan and the locations of the probable interference areas.

8.3 Planning Case 3: RF FH with Frequency Sharing

The network in this case is the same as in the first planning case. The frequency sharing arrangement
makes it possible to use FH with sufficient number frequencies in the hopping sequence even with
small TRX configurations without need to utilise fractional loading that requires special planning tool
support. Since this is RF hopping, downlink power control can also be fully utilised.

8.3.1 Frequency Planning

In this scheme all the sectors of the same site use a common MA-list. Fractional loading is not
utilised, since it is usually possible to get a sufficient number of frequencies in the hopping sequence
even without it. The benefit is that the frequency planning can be accomplished by using
conventional frequency planning tools that don’t support fractional loading. Since fractional
loading is not used, each MA-list will have as many frequencies as there are hopping TRXs in all
the sectors of each site. The BCCH frequencies are planned normally.

From the interference point of view the frequency sharing effectively combines all the sectors into
one virtual cell that covers the combined coverage area of all the sectors in that site. This can be
modeled in the planning tool (NPS/X 3.2 or older) by creating one virtual cell for each site and by
transmitting this cell through multiple directional antennas for example by using power divider
feature in the planning tool. It should be made sure that no power dividing losses are included since
in the reality there are no power splitters. Each of these virtual cells should have as many TRXs as
there are hopping TRXs in all the sectors of that site. As a result, it is now possible to create an
interference matrix that describes how much the sites interfere each other. In order to avoid intracell
interference, the channel separation should be set to at least 2. The frequency allocation can be now
performed normally, resulting in one common MA-list for each site.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 82/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

19
19frequencies
frequenciesreserved
reservedfor
fornon-BCCH
non-BCCHTRXs
TRXs
Each
Eachcell
cellhas
hasaasufficient
sufficientnumber
numberofofhopping
hopping
H o p p in g
S ite Ce ll T RX co u n t T RX s frequencies
frequencies even without fractionalloading
even without fractional loading
Network layout: A 1 2 1
2 3 2
A 1
B B 1 4 3
C 1 4 3

2 3
C 1 1
2 4 3
3 3 2
D 1 3 2
3 E
1 2 2 2 4 3
D 1 3 2 1
E 1 3 2
2 F 1 G 2 4 3
2 F 1 4 3
3 1
2 2 3 2
3 4 3
G 1 4 3
2 3 2
The
Thesame
sameMAMAlist
listisisshared
sharedamong
among
all
all the sectors of onesite
the sectors of one site
Ave ra g e h o p p in g T RX s/ce ll : 2.4

MAIO
MAIOplanning
planningneeded
needed
Effective
Effectivereuse
reuse==19
19frequencies
frequencies/ /2.4
2.4hopping
hoppingTRXs
TRXsper
percell
cell== 7.9
7.9 OK
OK

Figure 8-59. Network layout and the calculation of the needed MA-list lengths.

8.3.2 MAIO Planning

MAIO planning is needed in order to avoid mutual interference between the sectors of the same
site. Since the sectors of the same site use the same MA-list, there will be co-channel interference
between those sectors unless MAIO planning is properly done.

To prevent intra site and intra cell interference the following requirements have to be fulfilled:

• All the sectors of one site have to controlled by the same BCF
• All the sectors of one site have to use the same HSN
• MAIO planning have to be properly made

In order to guarantee interference diversity, a different HSN should be used in the different sites
located in the same area.

MAIO planning is simple in this case. MAIOStep should be set to 1 in every sector and MAIOOffset
must be selected for each sector so that the MAIOs of the hopping TRXs in one site will be in
consecutive order.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 83/84
Frequency Hopping Network Planning Guide

Frequencies for the MA list are planned with help of


frequency planning tool. Minimum separation is 2.

MAIOStep is 1

The sectors share MAIOoffset for each sector is set so that the
the same HSN MAIOs for TRXs are in consecutive order

Figure 8-60. Example of MAIO planning.

8.3.3 Analysis

Since fractional loading is not used, conventional C/I analysis is possible. However, the same virtual
cell with power dividers –setup that was used in the frequency allocation phase must be used in the
analysis.

Alternative option is to use the RXQUAL analysis tool of NPS/X 3.2. Since it is not possible to take
the benefits of MAIO management into account (=no interference between the cells of the same site),
similar setup as in the C/I analysis has to be used.

Version Date Page


1.0.0 Oct 23, 1998 84/84