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In this paper, we discuss modeling of the serial code acquisition process in a code division multiple access (CDMA) network. Due to multiple access interference (MAI), the process is characterized by a different probability of signal detection P/sub D/ and probability of a false alarm P/sub FA/ in each cell of the code delay uncertainty region. We derive exact expressions for average code acquisition time and its variance. In addition to this, we also present several useful approximations, which enable easy engineering use of these results for practical applications in future Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (UMTS) solutions. Numerical results based on this analysis are used for decision threshold optimization in code acquisition process for asynchronous CDMA networks.