Synchronization Requirements for OFDM-Based Cellular Networks With Coordinated Base Stations: Preliminary Results

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Coordinating base stations is envisioned as a key component in future multi-user cellular networks. While the capacity limits of such networks are becoming well understood and promise high spectral efficiency gains, there is still little knowledge about the performance degradation that may result from imperfect synchronization among bases and mobiles. The authors study this problem for the downlink of base-coordinated networks that use OFDM for the air interface. Transmissions are impaired by carrier frequency offset and sampling frequency offset. They derive an accurate signal model that captures the effect of both impairments and compute the interference caused by them.