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What is 5G NR Mini-slot | Function of Mini-slot in 5G NR

This page mentions 5G NR Mini-slot basics including function of Mini-slot. The difference between slot and mini-slot in 5G NR is also mentioned.

As shown in the figure-1, a frame in 5G NR consists of 10 ms duration. A frame consists of 10 subframes with each having 1ms duration similar to LTE. Each subframe consists of 2μ slots. Each slot can have either 14 (normal CP) or 12 (extended CP) OFDM symbols.

5G NR Frame Structure-slot,mini-slot

Slot is typical unit for transmission used by scheduling mechanism. NR allows transmission to start at any OFDM symbol and to last only as many symbols as required for communication. This is known as "mini-slot" transmission. This facilitates very low latency for critical data communication as well as minimizes interference to other RF links. Mini-slot helps to achieve lower latency in 5G NR architecture. Table below mentions typical fixed slots used in a 5G NR frame structure.

μ, (subcarrier spacing) Slots/slot Slots/subframe Slots/frame Slot duration
0 (15 KHz) 14 1 10 1 ms
1 (30 KHz) 14 2 20 500 µs
2 (60 KHz), normal CP 14 4 40 250 µs
2 (60 KHz), Extended CP 12 4 40 250 µs
3 (120 KHz) 14 8 80 125 µs
4 (240 KHz) 14 16 160 62.5 µs

Unlike slot, mini-slots are not tied to the frame structure. It helps in puncturing the exising frame without waiting to be scheduled.

Difference between slot and mini-slot in 5G NR

➤As mentioned normal slot occupies either 14 (normal CP) or 12 (Extended CP) OFDM symbols. It enables slot based scheduling. One slot is the possible scheduling unit and slot aggregation is also allowed. Slot length scales with subcarrier spacing.
• Slot length = 1 ms/2μ,
➤Mini-slot occupies 2, 4 or 7 OFDM symbols. It enables non-slot based scheduling. It is minimum scheduling unit used in 5G NR. As mentioned mini-slots can occupy as little as 2 OFDM symbols and are variable in length. They can be positioned asynchronously with respect to the beginning of a standard slot.

5G NR Numerology | 5G NR Terminology

5G NR Control channels | 5G NR Traffic Channels | 5G NR Reference Signals and sequences


This 5G tutorial also covers following sub topics on the 5G technology:
5G basic tutorial
5G Frequency Bands
5G millimeter wave tutorial
5G mm wave frame
5G millimeter wave channel sounding
Difference between 4G and 5G
5G testing and test equipments
5G network architecture
5G NR Physical layer
5G NR MAC layer
5G NR RLC layer
5G NR PDCP layer

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