Millimeter Wave Cell Search for Initial Access: Analysis, Design, and Implementation

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Conference Proceeding

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Millimeter wave (mmWave) technology is gaining momentum because of its ability to provide high data rates. However, in addition to other challenges in the operation of mmWave systems, developing cell search algorithms is a challenge due to high path loss, directional transmission, and excessive sensitivity to blockage at mmWave frequencies. Thus, the cell search schemes of long term evolution (LTE) cannot be used with mmWave networks. Exhaustive and iterative search algorithms have been proposed in literature for carrying out cell search in mmWave systems. The exhaustive search offers high probability of detection with high discovery delay while the iterative approach offers low probability of detection with low discovery delay. In this paper, we propose a hybrid algorithm that combines the strengths of exhaustive and iterative methods. We compare the three algorithms in terms of misdetection probability and discovery delay and show that hybrid search is a smarter algorithm that achieves a desired balance between probability of detection performance and discovery delay.