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1 (2) DRAFT

The purpose of this note is to explain the possible reasons for the counter 1075 sdcch_abis_fail_call being updated. It is common that this counter makes up most of the failures in the SDCCH. Counter 1075 is augmented when the BSC receives an Establish Indication which contents have been corrupted, or more commonly when a timer (T3101, default 3 sec) expires while waiting for the Establish Indication. The Establish Indication is the first message sent from the BTS to the BSC after the MS has successfully accessed the SDCCH. The reasons why the MS would not appear on the granted SDCCH are multiple; the following issues will be covered: ghost random accesses double reservations BCCH frequency-BSIC reuse bursts of random accesses in a very short time period

Ghost random accesses: The BTS is continuously monitoring the UL Random Access Channel slots in order to find whether or not there has been a random access from a mobile. The information contents of a random access burst are rather limited thus it is possible the BTS detects a random access from background noise. This kind of a "ghost random access" contains a random Establishment Cause, and very much a random random reference, and is detected with a random timing advance. There will always be a certain number of ghost accesses in the network. If the number of SDCCH seizures per site is very small, then it is possible that the majority of the accesses are ghost accesses. If this is the case, then the result will be a high failure rate, and nothing can really be done except to ignore the SDCCH abis fail on sites where there is very little traffic. One would expect (after BTS SW B9/D2) to receive maximum somewhere around a few tens of ghost seizures per day per site. The amount of ghost seizures can be studied with counter 3030 ghost_ccch_res; this counter is augmented each time a ghost reservation is rejected on the CCCH. The rejection is based on the Establishment Cause. Since the Establishment Cause is random, some of the Establishment Causes in the ghost random accesses will not be valid. Since this request is rejected it will not result in 1075 being augmented. However we can expect a random distribution of Establishment causes on ghost random accesses, thus a certain amount of ghost random accesses will contain a valid establishment cause and be granted a SDCCH. This SDCCH reservation will eventually time out (timer T3101) and result in SDCCH_ABIS_FAIL_CALL. The counter 3030 contains also accesses rejected due to excessive timing advance in the random access (feature Distance verification in resource allocation), but these can be subtracted with counter 3031. The amount of ghost accesses that finally result in SDCCH_ABIS_FAIL_CALL can be estimated to be less than 2*(3030-3031). Since the distribution is random, this is only an estimation and should only be used with relatively large sample numbers. Double reservations: When the mobile has sent a random access, it will expect an answer from the network within a certain time period. If the answer (Immediate Assignment or Immediate Assignment Reject) is not received, the mobile will repeat the random access. The repetition timers are explained in GSM specification 04.08. The maximum amount of repetitions is defined in the BCCH information, BSC parameter RET (max number of retransmission). If the MS has to send multiple random accesses for a call or location update, it is possible that there will be multiple reservations of SDCCH for one mobile naturally the mobile can use only one of these and the rest will eventually time out and result in sdcch_abis_fail_call.


2 (2) DRAFT

Why would the mobile not receive an Immediate Assignment? Either the BTS has not received the random access, or it has problems sending the Immediate Assignment, or the MS is not capable of receiving the Immediate Assignment. If there is UL interference, or the coverage is weak, the Random Access may be lost. In this case the SDCCH will not be seized, and counter 1075 will not be augmented. If there is overload on the Access Grant channel, the Immediate Assignment may be deleted by the BTS. The amount of deleted Immediate Assignments (and Immediate Assignment Rejects) can be found from counter 3005 del_ind_msg_rec. In case the immediate assignment is deleted, the MS will send a new Random Access after timer expiration the first seizure of SDCCH will result in sdcch_abis_fail_call. In case the Immediate Assignment Reject is deleted, the SDCCH was not reserved because of congestion, and sdcch_abis_fail_call will not be augmented. If there is interference on the DL access grant channel, or coverage is weak, it is possible that the MS can not receive the Immediate Assignment, and thus will make repetitions. For all the sent and not received Immediate Assignments, sdcch_abis_fail_call will be augmented. BCCH frequency-BSIC reuse If there are two sites with the same BCCH frequency and the same BSIC, then the training sequence codes used in the random access message by the MS and the decoding process at the BTS will be identical for these sites. Limited only by the radio propagation environment, the random accesses from one MS will be heard on both sites. Based on the frame timing differences between the two sites, some of these accesses may result in SDCCH reservations on two sites simultaneously. The MS will receive the Immediate Assignment for one of these reservations, and access the SDCCH. The second reservation will time out and SDCCH_ABIS_FAIL_CALL will be augmented. Bursts of random accesses, frequency-BSIC reuse distance: Sometimes burst like occurrences of sdcch_abis_fail_call have been evidenced, together with sudden SDCCH congestion, and possibly also Access Grant channel overflow. So far the only explanation found for this phenomena is the frequency-BSIC reuse distance. Consider that we have BTS1 with BCCH frequency 1, BSIC 1, and another BTS 2 with TCH TRX1frequency 1, BSIC 1. Now, limited only by signal attenuation, the handover access bursts to BTS2 TRX1 will be overheard on BTS1 BCCH frequency. The handover access burst is exactly like a random access burst, the fields in the handover access burst may be interpreted as the Establishment Cause and the random reference of the Random Access burst. Most probably some of the timeslots of BTS2 TRX1 will overlap the RACH of BTS1. So, if we do not have adequate distance between BTS1 and BTS2, some of the handovers to BTS2 may result in sudden bursts of random accesses to BTS1, resulting in sdcch_abis_fail_call, SDCCH congestion and possibly also access grant channel overflow. The distance between BTS1 and BTS2 may easily be tens of kilometers, depending on the radio propagation environment, and is not limited by the GSM specific 35 km timing advance limits (the frame timing of BTS1 and BTS2 not being synchronized).