Enhanced Inter-cell Interference Coordination for Heterogeneous Networks in LTE-Advanced: A Survey

Lars Lindbom, Robert Love, Sandeep Krishnamurthy, Chunhai Yao, Nobuhiko Miki, Vikram Chandrasekhar

Heterogeneous networks (het-nets) - comprising of conventional macrocell base stations overlaid with femtocells, picocells and wireless relays - offer cellular operators burgeoning traffic demands through cell-splitting gains obtained by bringing users closer to their access points. However, the often random and unplanned location of these access points can cause severe near-far problems, typically solved by coordinating base-station transmissions to minimize interference. Towards this direction, the 3rd generation partnership project Long Term Evolution-Advanced (3GPP-LTE or Rel-10) standard introduces time-domain inter-cell interference coordination (ICIC) for facilitating a seamless deployment of a het-net overlay. This article surveys the key features encompassing the physical layer, network layer and back-hauling aspects of time-domain ICIC in Rel-10.

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