k,m,q
(p
m
) =
p
m,q
c
k,m,q
1 +
Q
s=1,s=q
p
m,s
c
k,m,s
(1)
where p
m
= [p
m,1
, . . . , p
m,Q
] and c
k,m,q
= h
(m)
k,q

2
/
2
n
, being
2
n
the noise power and h
(m)
k,q

2
the channel power gain between
eNB q and UE k on subcarrier m that includes the contribution
of pathloss, shadowing and fast fading.
III. CENTRALIZED RA
We consider here a centralized architecture where a control
unit collects all the CSI of every user in the system and allocates
the resource units of the cluster trying to maximize the capacity
according to fairness and power constraints.
Following the approach in [2], we consider the framework of
ergodic sumrate maximization for continuous (capacity based)
rates extended to the multicell case. The problem can be
formulated as
max
U,P
K
k=1
R
k
(U, P)
s.t. P
q
(U, P)
P
q
, q
R
k
(U, P)
k
K
s=1
R
s
(U, P), k
(2)
where
R
k
(U, P) = E[R
k
(U, P)]
=
G
g=1
mGg
Q
q=1
E[
ug,q
k
C(
k,m,q
(p
m
))]
(3)
is the average rate per unit bandwidth provided to user k and
P
q
(U, P) =
M
m=1
E[p
m,q
] (4)
is the total average power spent by cell q to serve the allocated
users. Finally,
u
k
is the Kroneckers delta
1
and C(x) =
log
2
(1 +x).
The rst constraint refers to the total average power used
by qth eNB, which must be less than or equal to a maximum
amount
P
q
. Let us note that this constraint allows instantaneous
power levels to exceed the average power when necessary. The
second constraint determines the share of throughput nally
achieved by each user. Therefore = [
1
, . . . ,
K
]
T
denes
the required QoS by each user and must satisfy the condition
K
k=1
k
= 1.
A. Solutions for the allocation problem
Here, we follow the approach presented in [5] for a single
cell multiantenna system, which is based on a dual op
timization framework that utilizes the Lagrangian function
L(U, P,, ), where the dual variables = [
1
, ...,
Q
]
T
, =
[
1
, . . . ,
K
]
T
relax the cost function. The dual problem be
comes
min
,
g(, )
s.t. > 0, 0, (1
T
) = 0
(5)
where the third constraint on holds if sumrate is not
diverging to innity and g(, ) = max
U,P
L(U, P,, ) is
the dual objective.
Although the system utility in (2) is nonconcave, for ergodic
optimization it is proved that duality gap is zero if the cumula
tive density function (CDF) of channel gains is continuous,
which happens in classical Rayleigh and Ricean scenarios.
However, it is not possible to guarantee the dual problem is
differentiable. Hence, an iterative subgradient method which
updates the Q + K solutions , of the dual problem (5)
at each iteration can be applied. Nevertheless, in the practical
applications, the adaptive implementation is suggested, where
the iterations are performed along time and the evaluation of
the average power and rate in the subgradients can be done
through a stochastic approximation, as outlined in [2], [5].
In order to derive the dual objective g(, ) given ,
the expression of the Lagrangian function can be suitably
manipulated as in [5], leading to:
g(, ) =
Q
q=1
q
P
q
+ME
_
max
ug,pm,mGg
M(u
g
, P)
_
(6)
1
u
k
= 1 if u = k , 0 otherwise
where u
g
= [u
g,1
, . . . , u
g,Q
] and
M(u
g
, P) =
Q
q=1,ug,q=0
mGg
_
ug,q
C(
ug,q,m,q
(p
m
))
q
p
m,q
_
(7)
The optimal solutions for the evaluation of the dual objec
tive, given , , denoted as U
= [u
1
, ..., u
G
]
T
, P
=
[p
1
, ..., p
M
]
T
, becomes:
u
g
= arg max
ug
M
(u
g
) (8)
with
M
(u
g
) = max
pm,mGg
M(u
g
, P) (9)
and p
m
is the argument that nally leads to M
(u
g
).
It should be noted that user allocation in (8) represents a
discrete optimization problem which requires in general an
exhaustive search in the space of all possible vectors u
g
.
This huge search space can eventually be reduced by using
suboptimal heuristic algorithms as in [5]. However, for each
element of this search space the power allocation solution,
i.e. (9), has to be computed. This nonconvex problem can be
solved by using successive convex approximation methods as
in [16]. A suboptimal solution is obtained by simplifying power
allocation with the waterlling solution evaluated by assuming
constant uniform power for the interfering cells, i.e.
p
m,q
=
_
ug,q
q
ln
2
ug,q,m,q
(V
m
)
_
+
(10)
where the components of V
m
are v
m,q
= V
ug,q
0
. The power
V is a parameter which estimates the power of interfering cells
in each subcarrier.
Even though the power allocation algorithm based on (10), as
well as the update of variables in the adaptive implementa
tion, can be distributed on each base station, user allocation
algorithm as in (8) requires a centralized controller which
determines, for all subcarriers, the vectors u
g
and sends them
to eNB through signaling. Therefore, each eNB has to forward
the received CSIs of each UE to the centralized controller and
to receive back the allocation informations before trasmitting,
resulting in a high blackhaul signaling. Besides, the signaling
interface in realistic systems, i.e. LTE X2 interface, has not a
negligible latency, resulting in an additional delay on the CSIs
report, that should be taken into account, especially in very fast
fading environments. Thus, in a realistic network, centralized
resource allocation is practically difcult to be realized. In
the next section we provide a distributed solution and analyze
techniques to mitigate the intercell interference.
IV. DISTRIBUTED RA
In distributed RA each eNB allocates resources to its users
only without any knowledge of the allocation process at the
other eNBs, meaning without knowledge of the actual ICI. Only
partial ICI information is available at each eNB, which essen
tially consists of a power mask V
m
= [V
m,1
, . . . , V
m,Q
],
m = 1, . . . , M, used to limit the power allocated by each
eNB q on each subcarrier m. The effects of ICI can be further
mitigated by means of an offline coordinated resource control
among the cells in a cluster, which is the subject of next Section.
To formulate the distributed RA problem, let us rst dene
K
(q)
, with cardinality K
(q)
, as the set of users served by the q
th eNB, where K
(1)
. . .
K
(Q)
= {0} and
Q
q=1
K
(q)
= K.
In the distributed setting, only the lowerbound of the SINR
which depends on the power mask V
m
, m = 1, . . . , M is
known at the eNB, i.e.
k,m,q
(p
m
) p
m,q
k,m,q
where
k,m,q
=
c
k,m,q
1 +
Q
s=1,s=q
V
m,s
c
k,m,s
(11)
is the normalized SNIR lowerbound. The UE can measure
k,m,q
and send it through a feedback channel to its eNB only.
The average rate per unit bandwidth that can be provided to
user k in cell q, without incurring in outages, is given by
R
k
(U, P) =
G
g=1
mGg
E[
ug,q
k
C(p
m,q
k,m,q
)], k K
q
(12)
We can then write the distributed problem as a maximization
problem for each cell q = 1, . . . , Q :
max
U,P
kK
q
R
k
(U, P),
s.t. P
q
(U, P)
P
q
,
R
k
(U, P)
k
sK
q
R
s
(U, P), k K
q
p
m,q
V
m,q
, m
(13)
where now there is a restriction on the set of allocation
variables U, i.e. u
g,q
K
q
, and
k
must satisfy the constraint
kK
q
k
= 1, q. In this way each cell tries to maximize its
sumrate, taking care of intracell fairness only.
A solution for the RA problem can derived for each cell
q by following the same approach of Sec.III through dual
optimization and adaptive algorithms. The set of dual variables
to be updated is still the same, but now the constraints on
change as (
T
)
(q)
=
kK
q
k
k
= 1. The allocation
problem, due to cell decoupling, is now simpler than before,
because it avoids the nonconvex multicell power allocation,
and requires, for each cell q and PRB g, the maximization of
the following metric
M
(q)
(u
g,q
, P) =
mGg
_
ug,q
C(p
m,q
ug,q,m,q
)
q
p
m,q
_
(14)
leading to the optimal solution
p
m,q
= min
_
V
m,q
,
_
ug,q
q
ln 2
1
ug,q,m,q
_
+
_
(15)
u
g,q
= arg max
ug,q
M
(q)
(u
g,q
, P
) (16)
The main drawback of this solution is the fact that the
fairness of rate allocation is conned within each cell, whereas
global fairness depends on load and channel conditions on each
cell. The fairness issue can be partially solved with an offline
algorithm that balances the eNBs load, as contemplated by LTE
[1]. Although LB is not within the scope of our paper, we will
evaluate the performance of distributed RA when a simple LB
algorithm, is running, which is reported in the Appendix for
the sake of completeness.
A. PRB based power/rate allocation
In order to decrease feedback complexity, in a realistic LTE
scenario also rate and power are allocated per PRB, as channel
state feedback is reduced to no more than one value per PRB. In
this case, the Exponential Effective SNIR Mapping (EESM)[18]
is used to evaluate the SNIR of each PRB, by taking into
account that power mask is constant inside each PRB, i.e.
V
m
= V
g
, m G
g
, V
g
= [V
g,1
, . . . , V
g,Q
]. The EESM
for user k, PRB g, cell q is dened as
(e)
k,g,q
= log
1
N
mGg
e
(V g,q
k,m,q
(min)
k,g,q
)
+
(min)
k,g,q
(17)
where
(min)
k,g,q
= V
g,q
min
mGg
k,m,q
and the parameter is
used to tune the approximation. Here, with respect to [18], the
term
(min)
k,g,q
is introduced as an offset that keeps the range of
exponential function limited. The effective instantaneous rate
for user k using PRB g in cell q, when a power p
g,q
is allocated
for transmission, becomes
r
(e)
k,g,q
= N C
_
p
g,q
(e)
k,g,q
V
g,q
_
(18)
Parameter in (17) has to be designed to keep the probability
P( r
k,g,q
r
(e)
k,g,q
), where r
k,g,q
=
mGg
C(p
g,q
k,m,q
),
below a given threshold to prevent outage events.
In distributed RA using EESM feedback for each PRB, the
equations (12), (14) and (15) change by replacing
k,m,q
with
(e)
k,g,q
/V
g,q
and by setting p
m,q
= p
g,q
, V
m,q
= V
g,q
, m
G
g
.
V. POWER PLANNING FOR ICI COORDINATION
Generally, in distributed RA each eNB allocates resources
without complete knowledge of ICI. However, when the max
imum value of the transmitted power is predened and known
to all the eNB, partial information on ICI is available, which
enables some kinds of ICI coordination. Since the loss of
performance is usually due to the unlucky UEs close to the
cell border which drain radio resources in the attempt to obtain
the same capacity of the lucky UEs closer to the eNB, ICI
coordination techniques can be used to reduce interference in
resource units assigned to unlucky users.
In this work we denote in general as power planning
techniques those technique aimed at determining the set of
values V
g
, g = 1, . . . , G that allow the best distribution of ICI
across resource units as function of system and load conditions.
Within this framework, the simplest techniques that consider
an ofine static design of maximum power values are FFR and
Fig. 1. An example of FFR based power planning for a cluster of Q = 3
cells with overall reuse factor 2/3
Subband 1 2 3 4 5 Overall Reuse Factor
Reuse 1/3 1/3 1/3 1/3 1/3 1/3
Reuse 1/3 1/3 2/3 2/3 2/3 8/15
Reuse 1/3 2/3 2/3 2/3 1 2/3
Reuse 2/3 2/3 2/3 1 1 4/5
Reuse 1 1 1 1 1 1/1
TABLE I
FREQUENCY PARTITIONING FOR DIFFERENT FFR SCHEMES WITH Q = 3
SFR. In this paper we consider FFR techniques to be combined
with distributed RA. Improvements might come from more
sophisticated power planning techniques which optimize all the
values of V
g
with a limited set of constraints, but this calls for
further investigation.
When FFR is applied, V
g
is one of the elements of a nite
set V; we assume that if the vector V is an element of V, then
all the vectors obtained as cyclic shifts of V are elements of
V. All the available PRBs are partitioned in G/Q subbands of
Q PRBs. Inside each subband the Q shifts of the same power
vector V V are assigned to the Q PRBs. If G/Q is not
integer we may apply the partitioning and assignment of power
vectors to a pool of GQ PRBs over Q slots. If one or more
of the elements of power vector V V are zero, we say that
the resource unit or PRB is working with power vector V has
a reuse factor smaller than 1. This means that for one cell the
PRB has a reduced ICI, because one or more of the other cells
are not allowed to transmit in the PRB.
As an example for Q = 3 we consider the following elements
of V:
V1
3
= [V
(0)
1
3
, V
(1)
1
3
, V
(2)
1
3
] = [, 0, 0]
V2
3
= [V
(0)
2
3
, V
(1)
2
3
, V
(2)
2
3
] = [
3
2
V,
3
2
V, 0]
V1
1
= [V
(0)
1
1
, V
(1)
1
1
, V
(2)
1
1
] = [V, V, V ]
and we also assume that
P
q
=
P, q and V =
P/G. The
parameter allows a simple offline optimization of power
levels. Note that in the power vector V1
3
the non zero elements
is innity, because there is no need to limit the power when all
the other cells are not allowed to use the PRB. The assignment
of these vectors to subbands and PRBs is illustrated in Fig.1
with reference to a system with overall reuse factor 2/3. The just
System model
User distribution Uniform, in average 5, 10, 15, 20 per sector
Cell layout Single Hexagonal Cluster, with 3 sectors
IntereNB distance 520 m
Channel model
Path Loss 40 + 15.2log(d), d = distance in meter
Doppler Bandwidth 6Hz
Shadowing model Lognormal with 6dB standard deviation
Fast Fading 3GPP Pedestrian model
Delay spread 2.3 s
PHY model
System Bandwidth 3 MHz
Subcarrier spacing 15 KHz
Number of allocable subcarriers 180
Number of carrier per PRB 15
Frame duration 10 ms
Slot duration 0.5 ms
DL slots per frame 8 (TDD  Conguration 1 [1])
OFDM symbols per slot 7
CSI update 5 ms
Average Maximum eNB Power 1 W
Noise Power Density 2 10
20
W/Hz
TABLE II
SIMULATION MODEL
introduced concept allow us to dene other FFR schemes. We
summarize in table I the most relevant used to obtain numerical
results.
VI. NUMERICAL RESULTS
The performance evaluation is carried out through Monte
Carlo simulations according to models and assumptions sum
marized in Tab. II, also following the guidelines for LTE in
[1][17]. In the evaluation of assigned rates an SNR gap of 3dB
is taken into account. We consider a downlink scenario with a
cluster of Q = 3 cells, where the centralized and distributed RA
techniques described in the paper are evaluated and compared.
We denote with S1 the distributed system where the power and
the user rates are evaluated per subcarriers (sect. IV), whereas
S2 indicates the distributed system with perPRB power and
rate allocation based on the EESM metrics (subsect. IVA). The
fairness in rate allocation is evaluated through the wellknown
Jain Index [19] J =
(
K
k=1
x
k
)
2
K
K
k=1
x
2
k
where x
k
is modied to take
account of interclass fairness, i.e. x
k
=
R
k
k
. However, without
loosing generality, we presents here the results for one class,
i.e.
k
=
1
K
, k in centralized RA and
k
=
1
K
(q)
, k K
q
in
distributed RA.
Fig. 2 provides a comparison of the different RA tech
niques proposed in the paper by showing the capacity loss
of distributed RA with various FFR schemes with respect to
centralized RA for different number of UEs in the cluster. The
LB algorithm is implemented for the distributed RA. All the RA
schemes allocate rates with a Jains index ranging from 0.97
with K=15 user to nearly 1. We note that the capacity loss
decreases when the number of users increases, emphasizing
that multiuser diversity signicantly help distributed RA. We
also note that FFR schemes with reuse factor of 4/5 reduce the
capacity gap with respect to fullreuse RA, and a loss of some
percent units is due to to perPRB allocation. Optimal reuse
Fig. 2. Capacity loss of distributed RA with respect to centralized RA
K q without LB with LB
L
q
J R[kbps] L
q
J R[kbps]
15
1 1.371 2.756
2 1.773 0.845 5402 3.054 0.971 4969
3 4.188 2.441
30
1 6.178 5.106
2 4.341 0.941 6532 4.341 0.990 6621
3 3.046 4.344
45
1 3.131 7.628
2 8.498 0.944 8103 6.933 0.998 7398
3 7.226 7.226
60
1 5.811 8.965
2 7.068 0.968 9636 8.601 0.999 9501
3 12.582 9.122
TABLE III
LOAD METRIC, JAINS INDEX AND SUMRATE IN EACH CELL (Q = 3) OF
THE CLUSTER FOR DIFFERENT VALUES OF K AND FULLREUSE
DISTRIBUTED RA IN A SINGLE SIMULATION SCENARIO
factor moves towards 1 as the number of users get large. In
all the investigated cases the capacity loss is between 5% and
30%. In the centralized RA investigated here power allocation
is evaluated with suboptimal solution (10). However, it has
been checked that optimal power allocation provides a limited
capacity gain around 7% for K = 30 users, at the expense of
more complexity.
Table III collects results illustrating the impact of LB tech
niques to ensure fairness in distributed RA. The table shows
the sumrate and Jains index of the whole system, with and
without LB, as well as the load metric (see Appendix) in each
cell. Without LB a larger sumrate is achieved at the expense of
fairness among users. It is also interesting to note that in case
of spatially uniform distribution of user, LB looses relevance
when the number of users get large.
Next table, Tab. IV shows the tradeoff between allocated
sumrate and outage rate as function of parameter in the
EESM metric. According to these results we set = 410 for
all simulations in order to keep P( r
k,g,q
r
(e)
k,g,q
) below 1%.
Finally, in Fig. 3 we investigate the sensitivity of achieved
sumrate to the choice of parameter , which selects the values
in the power vectors used in distributed RA with K = 30 users.
It is shown that the maximum capacity is obtained with = 1,
which is the value used in all simulations. This result does not
change for different values of K.
350 395 400 405 410 420 450
Sumrate [Kbps] 6402 6433 6440 6442 6444 6449 6466
Outage Prob. % 0.00 0.34 0.51 0.72 0.96 1.56 3.96
TABLE IV
SUMRATE AND OUTAGE PROBABILITY P( r
k,g,q
r
(e)
k,g,q
) VS EESM
PARAMETER . DISTRIBUTED RA WITH FULLREUSE AND K = 30
Fig. 3. Sumrate vs parameter in S2 systems with K = 30 UEs
VII. CONCLUSIONS
In this work we have introduced and compared centralized
and distributed RA schemes which try to maximize sumrate
whilst supporting with fairness different UEs in a multicell
cluster. Distributed RA aims at reducing the stringent time
requirement to exchange information and the high feedback
complexity of centralized RA. Partial interference coordination
is obtained through power planning techniques, like FFR. The
results for a threecell cluster have shown that a distributed
system with high frequency reuse and large number of users
manages to approach the benchmark of centralized RA without
fairness degradation. However, few percent of capacity loss are
introduced by PRBbased allocation typical of LTE systems.
APPENDIX: A GREEDY LB ALGORITHM
The algorithm considers for each cell q of the cluster the
following load metric:
L
q
=
kK
q
l
k,q
=
kK
q
k
K
(q)
C(SIR
k,q
)
(19)
where SIR
k,q
is the signaltointerference ratio of user k with
respect to cell q evaluated by taking only into account distance
based attenuation. The load metric l
k,q
estimates the amounts
of resource units needed by user k, if served by cell q, to
achieve the required portion
k
of the sumrate. After the initial
assignment of each users to the cell providing the maximum
SIR
k,q
, the LB algorithm works as follows:
1. min = argmin
q
L
q
, max = argmax
q
L
q
2. = L
max
L
min
3. D
k
= l
k,min
l
k,max
, k K
max
4. u = argmin
kK
max
,D
k
0
D
k
5. L
max
= L
max
l
u,max
, L
min
= L
min
+l
u,min
6. min = argmin
q
L
q
, max = argmax
q
L
q
7. if L
max
L
min
> stop
8. K
max
= K
max
{u}, K
min
= K
min
{u}
9. go to step 2
ACKNOWLEDGMENT
This work was supported by the European Commission
under Network of Excellence NEWCOM++ (G.A. 216715) and
OPTIMIX project (G.A. 214625)
REFERENCES
[1] 3GPP TS 36.300, Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (EUTRA)
Overall description; Stage 2 (Release 9), v. 9.6.0, January 2011.
[2] I. Wong, B. Evans Resource Allocation in Multiuser Multicarrier Wireless
Systems, Ed. Springer, 2008
[3] N. Wei, A. Pokhariyal, T. B. Sorensen, T. E. Kolding, P. E. Mogensen,
Performance of MIMO with Frequency Domain Packet Scheduling in
UTRAN LTE downlink, IEEE J. Sel. Areas Commun., vol. 26, no. 6,
August 2008.
[4] P. Tejera, W. Utschick, J. A. Nossek, and G. Bauch, Rate Balancing in
Multiuser MIMO OFDM Systems, IEEE Trans. Commun., vol. 57, no. 5,
may 2009.
[5] Ana I. PerezNeira, Pol Henarejos, Velio Tralli, Miguel A. Lagunas, A
low complexity spacefrequency multiuser resource allocation algorithm,
WSA 2009, Berlin, Germany, February 1618, 2009.
[6] F. Boccardi and H. Huang, Limited downlink network coordination in
cellular networks, in Proc. IEEE Pers., Indoor Mobile Radio Commun.
(PIMRC), Athens, Greece, Sep. 2007.
[7] 3GPP TS 36.814, Further Advancements for EUTRA Physical Layer
Aspects (Release 9), v.1.5.2, January 2009.
[8] S. Brueck, L. Zhao, J. Giese and M. A. Amin Centralized Scheduling for
Joint Transmission Coordinated MultiPoint in LTEAdvanced, Interna
tion ITG Workshop on Smart Antennas (WSA 2010).
[9] N.Himyat, S.Talwar, A.Rao, R.Soni, Interference management for 4G
cellular standards, IEEE Communications Mag., Aug. 2010, pp.8694.
[10] Y. Xiang, J. Luo, C. Hartmann Intercell Interference Mitigation through
Flexible Resource Reuse in OFDMA based Communication Networks,
Proc. 13th European Wireless Conf., April 2007, Paris, France.
[11] V.Corvino, D.Gesbert, R.Verdone A Novel Distributed Interference Mit
igation Technique using Power Planning, IEEE WCNC, June 2009.
[12] V. Tralli and R. Veronesi and M. Zorzi, Powershaped advanced resource
assignment (PSARA) for xed broadband wireless access systems, IEEE
Transactions on Wireless Communications, Vol. 3, Nov. 2004.
[13] K.Son , S. Chong and G. De Veciana Dynamic Association for Load
Balancing and Interference Avoidance in MultiCell Networks IEEE
Trans. Commun., vol.8, no.7, July 2009.
[14] H.Huh, H.C Papadopoulos, G. Caire Multiuser MISO transmitter op
timization for intercell interference mitigation, IEEE Trans. on Signal
Proc., vol.58, no.8, August 2010, pp.42724285.
[15] M. Rahman, H. Yanikomeroglu, Enhancing CellEdge Performance:
A Downlink Dynamic Interference Avoidance Scheme with InterCell
Coordination, IEEE Trans. on Wireless Comm., Vol.9, No.4, April 2010.
[16] J. Papandriopoulos, J.S. Evans, SCALE: A LowComplexity Distributed
Protocol for Spectrum Balancing in Multiuser DSL Networks, IEEE
Trans. on Inf. Theory, vol.55, no.8, August 2009, pp.37113724.
[17] 3GPP TS 36.104, Evolved Universal Terrestrial Radio Access (E
UTRA); Base Station radio transmission and reception, v.9.5.0, October
2010.
[18] OFDM EESM simulation Results for SystemLevel Performance Eval
uations, and Text Proposal for Section A. 4.5 of TR 25.892,
[19] R.K. Jain, D.W. Chiu, W. R. Hawe A Quantitative Measure of Fairness
and Discrimination for Resource Allocation in Shared Computer System,
ACM Transaction on Computer Systems, September 1984.