As the worldwide demand for wireless networks is growing, new opportunities and areas are being sought out for the deployment of 3G networks. However, planning a 3G network in emerging markets remains a challenge, just as the case of the deployment and planning of 2G networks was initially.
The planning phase of a network is very crucial as any minor discrepancy can seriously affect the network in the quality phase. This article provides the basic guidelines for planning a 3G network in an emerging market.
Step # 1 for Planning a 3G Network in an Emerging Market
Prediction of the user traffic
The most important stage in the planning phase is the prediction of user traffic being generated from the area in focus. This can be a tricky situation as in many cases; the actual traffic pattern varies from time to time in an emerging market. Other than that, the coverage has to be ensured in both the urban and rural areas. Therefore, this phase should be carried out very painstakingly.
Step # 2 for Planning a 3G Network in an Emerging Market
Calculation of number of BTS carriers and radio controllers
Once the prediction data for the traffic is obtained for each area, the operator needs to calculate the number of BTS and the related number of radio carriers for each BTS. In addition to this, it needs to plan the number of BTS controllers and the back-end transmission network.
The calculation of BTS and count of radio carriers can be achieved by using the Erlang B or Erlang C tables. Using of one of the two tables depend solely on nature of the network. For a network with queuing for the user requests, an Erlang C table is to be used. However, for a network with a certain degree of assumed blocking, an Erlang B table is to be used for the calculations.
Step # 3 for Planning a 3G Network in an Emerging Market
Surveys for location and installation of wireless equipment
Once the calculations for BTS and radio counts are complete for all the areas, the operator needs to conduct surveys for the desired location for the installation of wireless equipment.
Several aspects need to be taken care of in these surveys.
-Line of sight configuration needs to be evaluated for all the microwave dishes.
– For the radio equipment, the antennas must be installed in areas, which do not have any obstacle within 200 to 300 meters of installation area.
-The operator has to abide by the local rules and regulations for the installation of radio equipment.
Step # 4 for Planning a 3G Network in an Emerging Market
Frequency spectrum allocation
Frequency allocation is one of the most important aspects of network planning. Efficient planning requires maximum spectrum utilization to provide the desired capacity in the network. Techniques such as baseband hopping or synthesized frequency hopping can be used to provide capacity even if the frequency spectrum is limited.
Overall, an operator needs to be extremely careful in all the aspects of planning a 3G network. With efficient site distribution and frequency planning, it can ensure a smooth coverage phase for the network. In addition to this, it can lay a strong foundation for the quality phase of the network.
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