5G Link Budget Made Easy!

This article, “5G Link Budget Made Easy!” is about 5G Link Budgeting that is one of the most important parts of 5G Design and Dimensioning. In order to calculate the number of 5G sites and to estimate cell edge radius, it is necessary to do a 5G Link Budget study. So, in this video, I have tried to simplify 5G Link Budget estimation with a step-by-step guide and it also shows the impact on cell edge radius of different input parameters and configurations using a python based dimensioning tool.
Note: The Link Budget analysis and tool is based on 3GPP-38901.

5G Link Budget Made Easy!

In this video, I have simplified 5G Link Budget with the intention that anyone can calculate 5G Link Budget themselves based on this video. This means that after watching this video, anyone can estimate the number of 5G sites required to cover an area, a city or a town.

This is based on 3GPP propagations models defined in 38901 specifications and I have found them to be pretty accurate. The models themselves are quite complicated so I have given a simplified equation in this session that can provide a good estimation without going through excessive computations.
The session also shows the impact of different Link Budget input parameters on the cell edge calculation using a python based tool that I created for this session. I hope you will all enjoy going through this video.

As per the video explanation, the Total Pathloss can be estimated as below
Total Pathloss = Total Tx Power – Rx Power

If we are looking to get the Maximum Allowable Pathloss then we need to substitute the minimum receivable power at the UE side
Total Pathloss = Total Tx Power – Min Rx Power (For Cell Edge)

Now Total Pathloss is actually made up of multiple losses and margins like propagation loss, body loss, building loss, vegetation loss, rain loss etc. Similarly, the Interference margin due to interference from other sites also needs to be included in the margins while fading/shadowing margins are also required to be added. Now, the equation can become as follows

Propagation Loss +Other Losses + Margins = Total Tx Power – Min Rx Power
Propagation Loss = Total Tx Power – Min Rx Power – Other Losses – Margins

From 3GPP, we have propagation loss models and using those models we can calculate propagation loss for a particular frequency at a given distance. But since we already have calculated propagation loss at cell edge (equation above) then we can simply substitute that value in the equation below to get the distance and this distance will be the cell edge for this configuration.

Propagation Loss = 13.54 + 39.08log(Distance) + 20log(Frequency) – 3GPP-38901
Distance = antilog[(Propagation Loss – 13.54 – 20*log(Frequency))/39.08]

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Ali Khalid

5G NR | VoLTE | LTE-A | Massive MIMO | NB-IoT | NDO Network Specialist at Ericsson, Australia
Ali Khalid is a Senior LTE/VoLTE RNPO, NB-IoT and 5G Solution Architect who has successfully delivered and led a number of projects in different regions across the globe including Pakistan, Bahrain, UAE, Qatar, Nigeria, Turkey and Oman. He is currently working in Strategic Competence Unit (SCU), a highly experienced global team at Ericsson, Australia. In case of any questions or feedback, please feel free to drop a comment below or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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