Interference Reduction Characteristics by Circular Array Based Massive MIMO in a Real Microcell Environment

Ngochao TRAN
Tetsuro IMAI

IEICE TRANSACTIONS on Communications   Vol.E98-B    No.8    pp.1447-1455
Publication Date: 2015/08/01
Online ISSN: 1745-1345
DOI: 10.1587/transcom.E98.B.1447
Type of Manuscript: Special Section PAPER (Special Section on 5G Radio Access Networks―Part I: Radio Access Technologies and System Design)
massive MIMO,  circular array,  microcell,  maximum ratio combining,  zero forcing,  channel sounder,  

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The concept of massive multiple input multiple output (MIMO) has recently been proposed. It has been reported that using linear or planar arrays to implement massive MIMO yields narrow beams that can mitigate the interference signal even if interference cancellation techniques such as zero forcing (ZF) are not employed. In this work, we investigate the interference reduction performance achieved by circular array implemented massive MIMO in a real micro cell environment. The channel state information (CSI) is obtained by using a wideband channel sounder with cylindrical 96-element array in the 2-GHz band in an urban area. Circular arrays have much larger beamwidth and sidelobe level than linear arrays. In this paper, when considering the cylindrical array, the interference reduction performance between ZF and maximum ratio combining is compared when one desired user exists in the micro cell while the interference user moves around the adjacent cell. We show that ZF is essential for reducing the interference from the adjacent cell in the circular array based massive MIMO. The required number of antennas in the vertical and horizontal planes for the interference reduction is evaluated, in order to simplify the burden of signal processing for the ZF algorithm in massive MIMO. Because there are elements with low signal to noise power ratio (SNR) when considering cylindrical 96-element array, it is shown that the degradation of the signal to noise plus interference power ratio (SINR) when the number of antennas is reduced is smaller than that by ideal antenna gain reduction with a linear array. Moreover, we show that the appropriate antennas should be selected when a limited number of antennas is assumed, because the dominant waves arrive from certain specific directions.