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Mobile WiMAX Base Station Troubleshooting Guide – utilizing Anritsu’s Handheld BTS Master™, Cell Master™, or Spectrum Master™

with Options 37/66/67

Start Here Troubleshooting Hints Locating Over-the-Air Test Spots Multiple Sector Coverage Checks
Use BTS Over-the-Air (OTA) tests to spot- These two tables provide guidance from the first indication of a fault, a poor Key Performance To test a BTS Over-the-Air (OTA) it is Carrier to Interference plus Noise Ratio
check a transmitters’ coverage and signal Indicator (KPI), to the BTS or Spectrum Master test, and finally, to the field replaceable unit. necessary to find a location with good pilot Base Station ID, Sector ID
quality. Use the Direct Connect tests to check dominance and low multipath.
transmitter power and when the OTA test Key Performance CINR Uplink Rx Preamble Spectral ACPR EVM
Freq Error
Noise Floor Power Flatness & Occ BW & RCE The BTS Master can show the current sector
results are ambiguous. Indicators vs. Test identification, which is a handy way to make
Call Blocking or Denial sure the signal being tested is from the
OTA Start
xx x x xx x xx
desired sector when testing OTA.
Capacity Shortage
UL Interference x xx To find a good OTA test site, look for a place
Find location with
strong signal, high CINR Call Drop squarely in the sector, a block or two from the
tower, and away from surfaces that may
Radio Link Timeout x x x x x x
reflect radio waves. A directional antenna for
UL Interference xx the BTS Master will help to screen out
Found DL Interference x xx x x x x unwanted signals.
Direct Connect
N Transmitter In some urban areas, locating a good OTA site
Test vs. BTS Field Freq Ref Radio PA Filter Antenna Antenna
can be difficult. In these cases, it may be
Replaceable Units Down Tilt
Y quicker to hook up to the BTS for testing. Carrier to Interference plus Noise Ratio
Carrier to Interference Noise Ratio (CINR) x x x x xx
Run Signal (CINR) is an over-the-air test that is ideal for
Quality Tests Uplink Rx Noise Floor x x x
checking received signal quality. A low CINR
Preamble Power x xx x x indicates poor signal quality and a low data
Spectral Flatness x xx x x rate.
Freq. xx x
Fix frequency Adjacent Sub-Carrier Flatness Base Station ID and Sector ID indicate which
reference x xx xx x
Passes? N Adjacent Channel Power Ratio (ACPR) base station and sector are being measured
Occupied Bandwidth (Occ BW) x x xx x OTA. The strongest base station and sector
Y x xx x x are selected for measurement.
Frequency Error xx Guideline:
Occ BW x = probable, xx = most probable
Passes? CINR numbers should be higher than 26 dB for
N OTA signal quality measurements at most data
rates when in an ideal spot (several blocks
Y from the BTS, square to a face, away from any
Anritsu BTS Master™
Mobile WiMAX BTS Block Diagram sector boundaries, and away from reflections.)
Pass/Fail screen provides status of BTS
CINR number should be higher than 12 dB
when near the boundary of a sector.
N Direct Connect Transmitter Tests
Transmitter tests can be run while hooked up Base Station ID and Sector ID should indicate
Y to the: the sector and base station under test

A. Output of the BTS (Point ”A”). Consequences:

Flatness B. Test port (Point “B”) which is Low CINR leads directly to low data rate, which
Passes? N essentially the output of the Multi- created dissatisfied customers and lowers the
Carrier Power Amplifier (MCPA). capacity of the sector.
C. Input to the MCPA (Point “C”) if the Wrong values for base station ID and Sector ID
Start signal is accessible lead to dropped handoffs and island cells. If
EVM/RCE Direct Connect the cause is excessive overlapping coverage, it
D. Frequency reference system (Point also will lead to poor CINR and low data rates.
N Transmitter
Test “D”) for carrier frequency errors
Common Faults:
Y The goal of these measurements is to increase
data rate and capacity by accurate power Low CINR numbers when in an ideal position
Run PC-based
Throughput Test
settings, low out-of-channel emissions, and indicate high multipath reflections, co-channel
good signal quality tests. Good signals allow interference, or poor signal quality from the
the cell to provide a better return on transmitter.
Good Erroneous sector and base station identification
backhaul The antenna is the last link in the indicate either an error in base station
put? N transmission path. If hooked up at point “A”, settings, faulty base station equipment, or an
it is helpful to sweep the antenna(s) at the issue with overlapping coverage from adjacent
Y same time, to ensure a high quality signal. cells.

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Mobile WiMAX Base Station Troubleshooting Guide – utilizing Anritsu’s Handheld BTS Master™, Cell Master™, or Spectrum Master™ with Options 37/66/67

Cell Size Spectral Flatness Out-of-Channel Emissions Signal Quality Tests Signal Quality Tests
(Time vs. Power) Adjacent Sub-Carrier Flattness (Peak) Adjacent Channel Power Ratio (ACPR) Error Vector Magnitude (EVM) Frequency Error
Preamble Power and RF Power Occupied Bandwidth (Occ BW) Reletive Constellation Error (RCE) Pass Fail Mode
Constellation Diagram

Preamble Power set cell size. A 1.5 dB Spectral Flatness is a check for un-even Adjacent Channel Power Ratio (ACPR) RCE and EVM measure the difference Frequency Error is a check to see that the
change in power levels means a 15% change amplitude of sub-carriers. The overall flatness measures how much BTS signal gets into between the actual and ideal signal. RCE is carrier frequency is precisely correct.
in coverage area. Coverage is directly of the signal is checked by the mask. neighboring RF channels. ACPR checks the measured in dB and EVM in percent.
affected by preamble power settings. closest (adjacent) and the second closest This can be checked Over-the-Air with ease,
Adjacent Sub-carrier Flatness (Peak) is (alternate) channels. A known modulation is required to make these and is a quick check for the GPS driven
Preamble Power can be measured in-service if measured between one sub-carrier to the measurements, since the limit depends on the reference circuitry.
the BTS has a test port. next. Poor flatness will give the weaker sub- ACPR faults not only degrade the signals in burst type, or signal modulation type, as
carriers a high bit error rate and lower neighboring channels, but also may indicate shown below.
Use the high accuracy power meter for the
capacity. signal quality faults in the carrier under test.
best accuracy (± 0.16 dB).
Guidelines: Network operators specify the Guideline: Sub-carriers must be within the Guideline: ACPR guidelines are set by local Guideline: Guideline: 2.0 parts per million (ppm),
power levels and tolerance. While some spectral flatness mask. regulations. As a guideline for 10 MHz QPSK-1/2 -15 dB 64QAM-1.2 -26dB which means:
operators accept +/- 2.0 dB, most use +/- 1.0 Adjacent subcarriers carriers must be within channels, -35 dBc for the adjacent channels and QPSK-3/4 -18 dB 64QAM-2/3 -28 dB • 1,250 Hz at 2,500 MHz,
dB as a commonly accepted tolerance. -45 dBc for the alternate channels are often • 1,450 Hz at 2,900 MHz
+/- 0.4 dB of each other. 16QAM-1/2 -20.5 dB 64QAM-3/4 -30 dB
accepted as good numbers. • 1,750 Hz at 3,500 MHz
16QAM-3/4 -24 dB

Consequences: High or low values will Consequences: Data will be less reliable Consequences: Poor ACPR can lead to Consequences: Low signal quality, low Consequences: Calls will drop when user’s
create larger areas of cell-to-cell interference on un-favored sub-carriers, creating a lower interference with adjacent carriers and legal data rate, and low sector capacity. This is the equipment travels at high speed. In severe
and create lower data rates near cell edges. over-all data rate liability. It also can indicate poor signal quality single most important signal quality cases, handoffs will not be possible at any
Low values affect in-building coverage. which leads to low throughput. measurement. speed, creating island cells.
Common Faults: Common faults include Common Faults: Spectral flatness issues Common Faults: Trace faults through the Tx Common Faults: Distortion in radios, Common Faults: First, check the reference
lack of amplifier calibration, large VSWR come from poor VSWR, filters with uneven signal path for resolution. When the power amplifier, filter, or antenna system. frequency and the reference frequency
errors, damaged connectors, and damaged pass-band, and amplifiers that are not flat. measurement point is before the faulty field distribution system. If a GPS frequency
antennas. Adjacent sub-carrier flatness issues indicate replicable unit, the ACPR will be good. reference is used, check it as well.
poor sub-carrier signal generation.

Uplink Rx Noise Floor Uplink Rx Noise Floor (continued) Occupied Bandwidth (from the Channel Power Constellation Diagrams can be used to check Pass Fail Mode (shown on the previous page
screen) is the bandwidth that contains 99% of for specific signal quality errors. A simplified as the BTS Master screen) is a way to set up
When looking for uplink interference a good Guideline: Less than approximately –80 the total carrier power. test signal is normally used. common test limits, or sets of limits, for each
first step is to check the uplink Rx Noise Floor. dBm received noise floor when no calls are up. instrument.
To do this, hookup to a test port, or the
antenna, for the affected sector and make Consequences: Call blocking, denial of Guideline: Less than 10.0 MHz for a 10 MHz Guideline: Symbol dots need to be near the Guideline: A green “Pass” field is required
measurements when calls are not up. services, call drops, low data rate, and low channel. template on the display. for all tests.
Look first for a high received Rx noise floor by Consequences: Excessive occupied Consequences: Errors show up as Consequences: Inconsistent settings
checking the noise floor during unused uplink Common Faults: Receiver de-sense from bandwidth means excessive adjacent channel distortion, leading to lower EVM and RCE between base stations, leading to inconsistent
time. The Mobile WiMAX Gated Power vs. co-channel interference, in-band interference, interference. numbers. network behavior.
Time marker, shown above, is useful for this. or passive intermodulation. Common Faults: In addition to the ACLR Common Faults: Errors in phase indicate Common Faults: Failures come from BTS
Also, use a test port, if present, to check for Intermodulation products can cause faults, take a close look at the carrier filtering. either local oscillator issues or a form of FM aging, hard faults, and variable standards.
signals outside the Rx channel but still passed interference and in turn may be caused by a Also check the amplifier power levels, which signal gaining ingress to the system. Errors in
through the Rx filter. These sort of signals combination of strong signals and corrosion. may be too high. amplitude indicate amplifier issues. Trace the
can cause receiver de-sense, lowering the This corrosion can be in the antenna, fault through the signal chain to identify the
cell’s receive coverage. connectors, or nearby rusty metal. Field Replaceable Unit.

® Anritsu. All trademarks are registered trademarks of their respective companies. Data subject to change without notice. For the most recent specifications visit: Document No. 11410-00469, Rev C Printed in the United States 2010-01