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Deploying relay nodes is foreseen a cost-efficient solution to combat the severe propagation loss at cell edge. However, relay cell coverage is limited by the low transmit power, limited antenna capabilities and wireless backhaul link bottleneck which may lead to load imbalances and hence low resource utilization efficiency. Further challenges in relay deployments are attributed to increased interference levels in the network compared with macrocell-only deployments, causing degradation of the user throughput. In this context, relay cell coverage expansion and interference coordination techniques are expected to improve the performance of relay deployments.
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