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Subject:

Downlink Scrambling Code planning for UTRAN


Draft Version 1.0

Date: From:

December 2004 Iqbal Jami jami@lucent.com

1. INTRODUCTION
UMTS-FDD mode utilises 512 possible downlink scrambling codes. These codes are divided into 64 groups of 8 scrambling codes in each group. During the initial cell search UE essentially aims to determine which of these codes is used by the detected cell. Thus in the first stage the UE detects a cell, in the second stage the UE determines the code group and finally in the third stage the UE acquires the cell specific downlink scrambling codes. This document addresses the issue of downlink scrambling code planning for efficient use of scrambling code groups in the neighbouring cells. In section two a brief introduction of scrambling codes and their grouping is presented. Section 3 covers the procedure for three different stages of cell search involving slot and frame synchronisation, and code group identification. In section 4 code planning strategy is discussed in terms of initial cell search and synchronisation. Also cross correlation values are analysed to study the impact of same code group in the neighbouring cells. Finally a simple code allocation scheme is proposed for hexagonal cell sites with three sectors per site, and a code reuse distance is derived followed by conclusion and references in the subsequent sections.

2. SCRAMBLING CODES
In UMTS, a cell or a sector is identified by its downlink scrambling code. There are 512 primary downlink scrambling codes that are reused throughout a system. These 512 codes are based on length 218 1 = 262,143 Gold sequences truncated to one frame interval, which consists of 38400 chips for the chip rate of 3.84 Mcps. There are 218 1 possible scrambling codes numbered from 0 to 262,142 that can be generated, but only 512 codes are used as a primary scrambling codes chosen with steps of 16 whereas the remaining 15 codes in between are considered to be secondary scrambling codes. To facilitate cell search and fast acquisition the 512 primary scrambling codes for downlink are further divided into 64 groups with each group containing 8 scrambling codes pre defined in standards [1]. The j:th scrambling code group consists of primary scrambling codes 16*8*j+16*k, where j=063 and k=07 as mentioned in the following table 1.
Primary code # Code group 1 Code group 2

Code group 64

Code #1 Code #2 Code #3 Code #4 Code #5 Code #6 Code #7 Code #8

0 16 32 48 64 80 96 112

128 144 160 176 192 208 224 240

8064 8080 8096 8112 8128 8144 8160 8176

Table 1 Scrambling codes grouping. Lucent Technologies Inc. - Proprietary


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There is a one-to-one mapping between each primary scrambling code and 15 secondary scrambling codes in a set such that i:th primary scrambling code corresponds to i:th set of secondary scrambling codes. Each cell (or sector) is allocated only one primary scrambling code. The primary Common Control Channel (CCPCH) and primary Common Pilot Channel (CPICH) are always transmitted using the primary scrambling code. The other downlink physical channels can be transmitted with either the primary scrambling code or a secondary scrambling code from the set associated with the primary scrambling code. Secondary scrambling codes can also be used to transmit signal in part of the cell (or sector) by using narrow beams in case of base station employs intelligent antennas.

3. CELL SEARCH AND SYNCHRONISATION


During initial cell search, when the mobile is switched on or in idle mode when inactive (searching for a neighbouring cell), three channels are used, namely the Primary Synchronisation Channel (P-SCH), the Secondary Synchronisation Channel (S-SCH) and the CPICH. Unlike CPICH, neither P-SCH nor S-SCH is scrambled by the downlink scrambling code. P-SCH, which carries the primary synchronisation code (PSC), is constructed by generalised hierarchical Golay sequence [2]. It is transmitted once every slot. PSC is common for all the cells in the system, and this code is already known to the UE. In the first stage of the initial cell search, the UE uses the PSC for slot synchronisation. The PSC is repeated in every slot, and can thus be used for detecting slot boundary. In the second stage, the UE determines the frame boundary and scrambling code group to which the cell belongs by using Secondary Synchronisation Codes (SSC). Finally in the third stage, the UE acquires the downlink scrambling code. Once the code group from the 64 groups is identified, the site-specific primary scrambling code can easily be detected by correlating over 8 possible codes within that selected group using CPICH [3] Secondary synchronisation codes vary from slot to slot. There are 16 unique sequences each of length 256, used for SSC. A frame of 15 slots as shown in figure 1, consists of 15 such Secondary Synchronisation Codes chosen from a set of 16 SSCs, which identifies a code group. The SSCs pattern for each code group is given in table 3 from [2].
One Radio Frame = 10ms = 38400 chips Slot # 0
2560 chips SSC code # 1 Length = 256 chips SSC code # 2 Length = 256 chips SSC code # 15 Length = 256 chips

Slot # 1

Slot # 14

Frame Boundary

15 SSC Code sequence, each of length 256 chips, represent one scrambling code group out of 64 groups Figure 1. Frame structure for S-SCH for Code group

4. SCRAMBLING CODE PLANNING


In UMTS FDD networks, the neighbouring cells can be allocated with scrambling codes in various strategies. The choice of the allocation scheme have impact on processing requirements and synchronisation performance at the UE [4]. The UMTS specification imposes no major restrictions regarding code planning. For instance, consider the case of a simple network comprising of only 6 adjacent cells. One way of code planning such a network would be to use different scrambling codes belonging to the same code group or alternatively, different codes could be assigned which are taken from exactly 6 different code groups. The former eventually oversimplifies the second stage of Lucent Technologies Inc. - Proprietary
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synchronisation and imposes all the required processing on the third stage, whereas the latter puts all the processing on the second stage and totally eliminates the third stage. Consequently, the best code planning strategy is a trade-off between the processing load on the UE and the synchronisation time or effectively the performance of synchronisation procedure [5]. Another method of downlink scrambling code planning is to assign code groups to neighbouring cells/sectors which have smaller cross correlation values with other codes of the group so that during initial cell search, the UE will correctly identify the code in stage 3 of the cell search process. The code groups which shows poor cross correlation characteristics can be allocated as far away as possible. The matrix (3232) plot of figure 2 shows the cross correlation values within first 32 scrambling codes (i.e. two primary and 30 secondary scrambling codes). From the figure it can be concluded that cross correlation values are almost negligible to assume that the codes are orthogonal and therefore impose no significant requirement on code planning. However it should be noted that cross correlation values are generated for only first 10 shifts of the codes and maximum value out of 10 is recorded. It is reasonable to assume that the codes in the groups are nearly orthogonal.
30 28 26 24 22

Code number

20 18 16 14 12 10 8 6 4 2 0 0 2 4 6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 22 24 26 28 30

0.016 0.014 0.012 0.01 0.008 0.006 0.004 0.002

Code number Figure 2. Cross correlation values of first 32 codes within 2 code groups including both primary and secondary scrambling codes

4.1. Code Allocation Strategy for Hexagonal Cell Geometry


For cell planning, it is convenient to divide the geographical coverage area into hexagonal cells. Figure 3 shows a symmetrical layout of hexagonal cells with 3 sectors per cell each providing 120 sector coverage. By considering the rotational symmetry of a hexagonal grid system and using the notion of hexagonal rings of cells around a center (or a reference) cell it is easier to define the co-ordinates of a particular cell in the ring. Let i denote the index to the cell in the nth ring as illustrated in figure 3. Then the distance d between the ith cell and the nth ring is given by:

d = 2 R n 2 + i 2 ni

eq(1)

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c=3 s=2 s=2 s=1 c=1 c=2 s=1 n=1

c=3 n=2 R Rc

i=1

s=3

c=2

R=
c=1 i=2 c=12

3 Rc 2

i=1 i=2

Figure 3. Hexagonal Cell Geometry.

4.1.1. Code Assignment Scheme


A simple approach of allocating 512 available scrambling codes is shown in figure 4 where the cell with three sector each is allocated code group indexing from Code_group_number =1,2, 64 according to the following algorithm. Let s be the index of the sth sector (i.e., s=1,2,3) in a cell. Next we use c to index the cth cell in the nth ring in the counter clockwise direction as labelled in the figure 3. For example, for the first ring n=1, and c indexes from 1 to 6 to cover the first tier of neighbouring cells and likewise for n=2 c=1,2,3, 12. We start with the center cell as a reference (i.e. n=0 and c = 0 case) such that Code_group_number = c*n + s If n = 1 Code_group_num = 3*c*n+s Else if n = 2 Code_group_number =18+3*c*(n-1)+s Else if n = 3 Code_group_number =54+3*c*(n-2)+s The layout of figure 4 follows the above code allocation scheme and it fulfils the criteria of having different code groups assigned to the neighbouring cells. Only 57 code groups are used to fill one cluster of scrambling codes to maintain the symmetry so that the same pattern can be replicated in the next cluster. However it is advisable to reserve

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some code groups in case the operator wishes to expand the network with more sectors per cell site to cover hotspots or to improve the capacity.

32 34 38 39 37 14 40 41 42 43 44 45 48 46 49 47 17 18 21 19 51 50 38 39 37 14 40 41 42 43 44 45 48 46 49 47 17 18 21 19 51 50 52 54 20 15 16 2 3 6 4 53 57 55 1 35 36 13 12 10 9 7 5 22 23 56 8 11 52 54 34 33 31 30 28 27 25 24 20 15 16 2 3 6 4 53 57 55 32 44 45 29 48 46 26 49 47 1 35 36 13 12 10 9 7 5 22 23 8 33 31 11 30 28 27 25 24 39 37 40 38 29 26 35 36 13 15 16 17 18 19 21 51 50 52 54 20 2 3 6 4 53 57 55 12 10 1 9 7 5 22 23 56 8 11 34 33 31 30 28 26 25 24 32 29 27

14 Reuse Distance 41 42 43

56

Figure 4. Allocation of scrambling code group for a cluster of 57 sites.

4.1.2. Code Reuse Distance


From the geometry of figure 4 and using equation (1) we can work out the code (group) reuse distance or neighbouring cluster distance. In the case of 3 sectors per cell and using all available 57 distinct code groups in one cluster, the code reuse distance will be:

d = 2 R 19 = Rc 57
Above calculation of d is based on n=5 and i=2. More general formula for the distance between the reference cell to the ith cell in the nth ring is given by table 2 [6]. The value of d is the reuse distance for the code group 1, 2 and 3 from the reference cell to the same code group in the adjacent cluster. Assuming the value of R 1.5km a typical value of cell radius, d will be approximately 13 km which provides sufficient path loss for the code group to be used again. Lucent Technologies Inc. - Proprietary
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n 1 2 2 3 3 3 4 4 4 4 5 5 5 5 5 : n

i 1 1 2 1 2 3 1 2 3 4 1 2 3 4 5 : i

Distance 2R = Rc 3 2R 3 =3 Rc 4R =2 Rc 3 2R 7 = Rc 21 2R 7 = Rc 21 6R = 3 Rc 3 2R 13 = Rc 39 4R 3 =6 Rc 2R 13 = Rc 39 8R = 4Rc 3 2R 21 = 6 Rc 7 2R 19 = Rc 57 2R 19 = Rc 57 2R 21 = 6 Rc 7 10R = 5Rc 3 : 2R (n2 + i2 ni)

Table 2. Distance between cells

5. CONCLUSION
The strategy adopted in allocating downlink scrambling code group is straightforward and easy to implement. The availability of allocating 64 code groups is enough to ensure that the neighbouring cells can be served on different code groups up to the second tiers of cells. The arrangement of various code groups in different sectors seems to be sufficient to provide minimum interference between clusters. However it should be noted that the calculation of code reuse distance is based on constant cell radius of all the cells. In practice the coverage area may not be truly represented by hexagons and therefore cell radius cannot be assumed constant. Besides, there may be the case that some cell sites have more than 3 sectors which would also reduce the reuse distance. The cross correlation values among different code groups have not been tested in real multipath channel which may imposed further restrictions on allocation of code groups in the adjacent sectors. In reality, network operators may wish to have more reserve codes to use with hierarchical cell structure and variable number of sector (i.e. up to 6 sectors per cell) coverage per cell. This would overall require more efficient code planning for capacity improvement.

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Table 3: Allocation of SSCs for secondary SCH


Scrambling Code Group Group 0 Group 1 Group 2 Group 3 Group 4 Group 5 Group 6 Group 7 Group 8 Group 9 Group 10 Group 11 Group 12 Group 13 Group 14 Group 15 Group 16 Group 17 Group 18 Group 19 Group 20 Group 21 Group 22 Group 23 Group 24 Group 25 Group 26 Group 27 Group 28 Group 29 Group 30 Group 31 Group 32 Group 33 Group 34 Group 35 Group 36 Group 37 Group 38 Group 39 Group 40 Group 41 Group 42 Group 43 Group 44 Group 45 Group 46 Group 47 slot number #6 #7 #8 15 8 10 14 16 3 12 16 6 5 2 5 15 5 12 5 5 3 9 2 11 10 2 13 7 13 16 6 5 5 4 3 8 9 15 1 13 16 5 15 15 8 10 7 8 13 14 10 6 4 16 9 10 12 2 8 14 3 16 7 10 13 12 13 5 8 3 10 11 8 3 5 3 13 13 14 3 14 9 11 2 15 10 5 8 14 15 9 4 16 12 9 7 13 3 12 4 10 13 2 9 16 14 14 8 8 11 6 8 10 8 14 10 15 7 11 4 13 6 12 15 5 9 12 13 5 16 15 3 4 9 9 11 13 3 9 15 4 12 4 15 3 15 11

#0 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 1 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 2 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3 3

#1 1 1 2 2 2 3 4 5 6 6 7 7 8 8 9 9 10 11 12 12 15 16 2 2 3 3 4 4 5 5 6 6 7 7 8 9 10 11 16 3 3 4 4 4 5 6 7 7

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

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

#4 9 7 5 8 6 4 4 14 4 14 7 16 9 14 15 16 15 13 14 4 7 11 16 15 12 9 5 12 3 2 3 7 2 5 5 2 13 11 16 11 16 4 10 5 14 6 16 4

#5 10 3 5 6 11 1 10 9 11 2 2 7 4 1 16 2 7 2 7 14 6 9 11 5 16 15 4 7 12 11 3 16 12 9 2 13 16 6 14 12 9 6 4 10 5 5 11 15

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

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

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Scrambling Code Group Group 48 Group 49 Group 50 Group 51 Group 52 Group 53 Group 54 Group 55 Group 56 Group 57 Group 58 Group 59 Group 60 Group 61 Group 62 Group 63

#0 3 3 3 3 3 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 5 9 9 9

#1 8 8 10 13 14 5 6 6 7 9 10 10 13 10 11 12

#2 7 15 10 11 7 8 11 13 9 6 10 12 15 13 12 10

#3 15 4 15 5 9 14 7 8 10 8 12 6 15 10 15 15

#4 4 16 16 4 14 16 10 13 7 10 8 5 14 11 12 13

#5 8 4 5 12 10 13 8 5 11 9 11 12 8 15 9 14

slot number #6 #7 #8 15 12 3 8 7 7 4 6 16 4 11 6 13 8 7 6 14 13 5 8 7 7 7 6 6 12 9 8 12 5 9 7 8 8 9 7 6 7 16 15 9 16 13 13 11 9 14 15

#9 16 15 4 6 8 7 12 16 12 11 9 6 8 12 14 11

#10 #11 #12 #13 #14 4 16 12 11 11 12 11 3 16 12 3 15 9 6 9 5 3 14 13 12 10 4 4 13 9 8 15 6 15 7 12 10 6 9 11 14 15 8 16 15 11 8 8 6 10 10 11 12 7 7 5 12 6 7 6 7 8 11 11 9 7 13 14 5 16 14 13 16 14 11 10 16 15 14 16 11 13 12 16 10

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