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5G Small Cell, Pico Cell Understanding and Planning

in Blog, 5G, 5G NR, simulator, Small Cell, small cell simulators

In the blog, the readers will comprehend the elementary aspects of Small cell in 5G communication mechanism, in a way it is enhanced 4G-LTE. The article will be significant to the scholars, learners, researcher and City RF Planner who are aware with 4G, 3G or 2G also be worthwhile for those who are innovative to this technology.  

5G mean ultra high speeds on cellular networks that will require Dense small cells even inside the buildings and homes. So to set up these small cells we needs a number of parameters to be tweaked as per the RF scenario of the space of installation. Readers can intellectualize the scenarios, why Small Cell technology actuality hosted in this new generation of mobile network communication, this article suggests about simulators subsequently far along the emphasis resolve on the thorough and illuminated scenarios for simulating Small Cells, nearby categories and why this policy organization from the network providers and also the adaptiveness in the antenna system called MIMO and massive MIMO for higher data rates. The learning will likewise embrace the facts and constraints on which the simulation will be accompanied, the article converging on the crucial subjects for manipulative reasons for its energy competence throughout the broadcast or circulation of this mechanism. The readers will grow a thorough knowledge base about the mechanism and Small Cell Simulators.


 The article, at hand drive innovative technology apprise for individuals by this time operational in this approach. All the techno mutant or geek, investigators, scholars, academics, Ph.D. fellowmen, newbies, expertise freelancers can practice our articles for their research and studies they will constantly be advanced by the comprehensive learning comprises in the article.  IN short RF planners will get to know more parameter that are now covered by simulators and the researchers will get to know about the new parameters that needs to be studied and programmed in Matlab or another simulation language. 

What is a small cell

A small cell is radio access nodes with low radio frequency(RF).  The service area of these access nodes are both indoor and outdoor regions. The standard emphasized in every single cellular progression is coverage and capacity. Small cell is the way out for these standards. These nodes can work in both licensed and unlicensed spectrum, it covers the range between 10 meters to 2 kilometers. The intention of mounting small cell is to escalate coverage and capacity in dense populated urban areas that cannot be sustained by macro cells, the growth of small cell will increase the comprehensive data circulation. 

The installation of small cell extends the battery life, small cells are further divided into femtocell, microcells and picocells. The femtocells have the shortest range of small cell types, usually deployed in homes or small enterprises. Femtocells have maximum range of less than 10 meters. Picocells are usually installed in larger indoor areas like shopping malls, workplaces and airport or stations they can accommodate up to 100 users at a time and ranges under 200 meters. Microcells are the largest and most powerful small cell, usually deployed in outdoors and temporarily for large events. Microcells has range up to 2 kilometers. Microcells and picocells are generally installed by the network operators. The small cell antennas must have outdoor furniture assistance, high weather reliability and safe to touch design. The challenges for the deployment of small cell antennas are finding the cost effective and innovative solutions, optimizing signal coverage and avoiding interference.

Basic parameters for Small cell Setup and its capacity study

Small cells are very crucial component of 5G networks, to rise network capacity, density and coverage. On the comprehensive design phase of 5G and evolution of 5G necessities, it is clear that small cells are the significant factor in assembling the pathway of 5G practical and profitable. 5G requirement demands are:

  •  Capacity 
  •  Coverage 
  •  Spectrum at higher frequency 
  •  Bandwidth with low power shared spectrum 

The small cell is the only viable option for several 5G deployment. The factors in which the small cell will play vital role are.

  •  6GHz spectrum, where propagation limits cell sizes
  •  Workable on Licensed and Unlicensed bands
  •  Areas of hyper dense traffic demand in cities, transport hubs etc
  •  Scalable, low cost deployment
  •  Small/medium enterprises requiring self-deployed indoor coverage
  •  Coverage extension in rural and remote and temporary deployed scenarios 
  •  Better location providing to customers

Finding the place to deploy a small cell needs a suitable design and also a detailed planning, which might have amount of restriction on engaging devices. There are various techniques to provide a small cell through a signal from macrocell, including bonded fiber optics or wireless microwaves etc. which has its specific boundaries. Fiber optics connections are expensive where as other mediums provide limited data rates and also requires pre-installed infrastructure. On the other hand, wireless requires navigation of varying line-of-sight conditions.  

Occupying less space, they be guarantee unified connectivity. Operators can effortlessly switch large cell sites in busy urban ranges with several smaller cell spots or even enhance cell sites using small cells solutions. More consumers can be served per square mile. This means less blocked calls and more consistent data speeds in dense populated cities.

Constraints of Small Cell Deployment

Small cell deployment itself faces some challenges. Deployment service providers will certainly have to undertake a sequence of changes. This is in order to cost-effectively supply site acquisition, construction, integration, as well as optimization services for Small Cell deployments under such a low-cost model. In doing so, they face various number of challenges:

  •  Working with network operators,[Posses an opportunity for Third party] vendors and site owners to find the right Small Cells design.
  •  Come up with some solutions for extensive approval process [new Para legal jobs]
  •  Finding right to use premises or buildings for deployment from municipal utilities and owner of the site
  •  Provide the site with adequate amount of electricity required from the utilities and companies 
  •  knowledge of potential deployment locations with the availability and costs of power & backhaul at these locations
  • Requirement of fiber/copper or wireless signal transmission from nearest Marco BS
  • Trialing and fine-tuning repeatable configuration and integration processes[New and Improved Simulators for custom design]

Facts on interest, asset availability, capacity demand, and existing system analysis will become vital to make a Small Cells project practicable, equally beneficial and effective. It is significant to move towards shorter range, high capacity solutions.

Parameters currently Simulatable in Simulators.

  1. Device Registration/De registration scenarios.
  2. Device Attach/Fail scenarios.
  3. ACK/ NACK for the broadcast / Multicast.
  4. Handover scenerios and Failed handovers (WLAN to LTE and vice versa)
  5. Network throughput per Node.
  6. Spectral Efficiency per Node and per band.
  7. Modulation schemes.
  8. Radio Frame sizes

9. Attention with frequency 

(The below Videos are randomly found and Author is not connected them nor take any responsibility of the material of these Videos these are for demo purpose only.)



Open parameter which require Researcher’s attention for inclusion in Simulators.

  1. Call capacity per watt
  2. Max call capacity per cell in different data rates of all connected users.
  3. Attenuation rates of various building and power calculation on angle of reflections.
  4. Use of MIMO in small cell to increase capacity and directivity. 
  5. Offloading features of one cell traffic to another cell traffic. 
  6. Detection of failed calls and its recording. 

Best Choice for Developing a Small cell simulator. 

Java based programming language 

OMNET++ 4.6

INET 2.4



Professional options 

  1. IBWAVE 
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