Throughput Analysis of Massive MIMO Uplink With Low-Resolution ADCs
Journal article, 2017
We investigate the uplink throughput achievable by a multiple-user (MU) massive multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) system, in which the base station is equipped with a large number of low-resolution analog-to-digital converters (ADCs). Our focus is on the case where neither the transmitter nor the receiver have any a priori channel state information. This implies that the fading realizations have to be learned through pilot transmission followed by channel estimation at the receiver, based on coarsely quantized observations. We propose a novel channel estimator, based on Bussgang's decomposition, and a novel approximation to the rate achievable with finite-resolution ADCs, both for the case of finite-cardinality constellations and of Gaussian inputs, that is accurate for a broad range of system parameters. Through numerical results, we illustrate that, for the 1-bit quantized case, pilot-based channel estimation together with maximal-ratio combing, or zero-forcing detection enables reliable multi-user communication with high-order constellations, in spite of the severe nonlinearity introduced by the ADCs. Furthermore, we show that the rate achievable in the infinite-resolution (no quantization) case can be approached using ADCs with only a few bits of resolution. We finally investigate the robustness of low-ADC-resolution MU-MIMO uplink against receive power imbalances between the different users, caused for example by imperfect power control.
linear minimum mean square error (LMMSE)
Analog-to-digital converter (ADC)