Circuit-aware design of energy-efficient massive MIMO systems
Paper in proceedings, 2014
Densification is a key to greater throughput in cellular networks. The full potential of coordinated multipoint (CoMP) can be realized by massive multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) systems, where each base station (BS) has very many antennas. However, the improved throughput comes at the price of more infrastructure; hardware cost and circuit power consumption scale linearly/affinely with the number of antennas. In this paper, we show that one can make the circuit power increase with only the square root of the number of antennas by circuit-aware system design. To this end, we derive achievable user rates for a system model with hardware imperfections and show how the level of imperfections can be gradually increased while maintaining high throughput. The connection between this scaling law and the circuit power consumption is established for different circuits at the BS.