Leveraging multiple simultaneous small cell connections is an emerging and promising solution to enhance session continuity in millimeter-wave (mmWave) cellular systems that suffer from frequent link interruptions due to blockage in ultradense urban deployments. However, the available performance benefits of feasible multi-connectivity strategies as well as the tentative service quality gains that they promise remain an open research question. Addressing it requires the development of a novel performance evaluation methodology, which should take into account: (i) the intricacies of mmWave radio propagation in realistic urban environments; (ii) the dynamic mmWave link blockage due to human mobility; and (iii) the multi-connectivity network behavior to preserve session continuity. In this paper, we construct this much needed methodology by combining the methods from queuing theory, stochastic geometry, as well as ray-based and system-level simulations. With this integrated framework, both user- and network-centric performance indicators together with their underlying scaling laws can be quantified in representative mmWave scenarios. To ensure modeling accuracy, the components of our methodology are carefully cross-verified and calibrated against the current considerations in the standards. Building on this, a thorough comparison of alternative multi-connectivity strategies is conducted, as our study reveals that even simpler multi-connectivity schemes bring notable improvements to session-level mmWave operation in realistic environments. These findings may become an important reference point for subsequent standardization efforts in this area.
- Jufo-taso 3
!!ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Computer Networks and Communications
- Electrical and Electronic Engineering