The Future of LTE : Femtocell Perspective

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Shihab, Hiba
Alhaj, Ola
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In the last decade mobile industry reached an inevitable milestone, the aggregated mobile data traffic exceeded voice traffic in the mobile networks. Starting with this point, data consumption has been continuously increasing .Moreover, cell-phone signals are strongly attenuated when indoors leading to poor indoor coverage and low end-user capacity which represent two major challenges for mobile operators. For these reasons mobile operators face nowadays a new paradox: they have to invest massively in their networks in order to sustain the increasing traffic while revenues are not expected to rise. This means that in order to survive, operators have to add extra capacity in a cost-efficient way. Using indoor solutions and mobile data offloading has been considered one right approach for solving this issue. A low-cost low-power attractive solution known as femtocell is introduced to meet one of the most essential desires of mobile network – better coverage and enhanced capacity. Femtocells which are cells using personal base stations to enable indoor connectivity through existing broadband internet connections, have become one of the most useful constituents of LTE (Long Term Evolution) technology. LTE is the new standard recently specified by the Third Generation Partnership Program (3GPP) on the way towards fourth-generation mobile and it has become an important part of everyday life and for the future which consists of heterogeneous networks. The purpose of this project is to take a step toward clarifying femtocells as an important component of the developing LTE technology. Our project consists of two main parts, in the first part we study the femtocell with definition, basic features, benefits for both users and operators, challenges and how it provides a fresh opportunity for mobile operators to address indoor coverage problem in an effective manner that precedes several indoor coverage techniques. In the second part we study the fundamentals of LTE , LTE network architecture and the key enabling technologies behind LTE such as OFDM,OFDMA and SC-FDMA. In later stages , A detail presentation of the femtocell technology has been studied from the perspective of the LTE, considering complete LTE Femtocell network architecture with device responsibilities as well as providing a step by step breakdown of all the key aspects of femtocell from the physical layer through the network stack.