Effects of Beamforming and Antenna Configurations on Mobility in 5G NR

Edgar Ramos, Antonino Orsino

The future 5G systems are getting closer to be a reality. It is envisioned, indeed, that the roll-out of first 5G network will happen around end of 2018 and beginning of 2019. However, there are still a number of issues and problems that have to be faces and new solutions and methods are needed to solve them. Along these lines, the effects that beamforming and antenna configurations may have on the mobility in 5G New Radio (NR) is still unclear. In fact, with the use of directive antennas and high frequencies (e.g., above 10 GHz), in order to meet the stringent requirements of 5G (e.g., support of 500km/h) it is crucial to understand how the envisioned 5G NR antenna configurations may impact mobility (and thus handovers). In this article, first we will briefly survey mobility enhancements and solution currently under discussion in 3GPP Release 15. In particular, we focus our analysis on the physical layer signals involved in the measurement reporting and the new radio measurement model used in 5G NR to filter the multiple beams typical of directive antenna with a large number of antenna elements. Finally, the critical aspect of mobility identified in the previous sections will be analyzed in more details through the obtained results of an extensive system-level evaluation analysis.

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