Joint Activity Detection and Channel Estimation in Cell-Free Massive MIMO Networks with Massive Connectivity

Mangqing Guo, M. Cenk Gursoy

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Cell-free massive MIMO is one of the key technologies for future wireless communications, in which users are simultaneously and jointly served by all access points (APs). In this paper, we investigate the minimum mean square error (MMSE) estimation of effective channel coefficients in cell-free massive MIMO systems with massive connectivity. To facilitate the theoretical analysis, only single measurement vector (SMV) based MMSE estimation is considered in this paper, i.e., the MMSE estimation is performed based on the received pilot signals at each AP separately. Inspired by the decoupling principle of replica symmetric postulated MMSE estimation of sparse signal vectors with independent and identically distributed (i.i.d.) non-zero components, we develop the corresponding decoupling principle for the SMV based MMSE estimation of sparse signal vectors with independent and non-identically distributed (i.n.i.d.) non-zero components, which plays a key role in the theoretical analysis of SMV based MMSE estimation of the effective channel coefficients in cell-free massive MIMO systems with massive connectivity. Subsequently, based on the obtained decoupling principle of MMSE estimation, likelihood ratio test and the optimal fusion rule, we perform user activity detection based on the received pilot signals at only one AP, or cooperation among the entire set of APs for centralized or distributed detection. Via theoretical analysis, we show that the error probabilities of both centralized and distributed detection tend to zero when the number of APs tends to infinity while the asymptotic ratio between the number of users and pilots is kept constant. We also investigate the asymptotic behavior of oracle estimation in cell-free massive MIMO systems with massive connectivity via random matrix theory. Moreover, in order to demonstrate the potential performance loss of SMV based MMSE estimation, which does not employ the correlation between the received pilot signals at different APs, the multiple measurement vector (MMV) based MMSE estimation, i.e., joint MMSE estimation with pilot signals from all APs, is analyzed via numerical results. Numerical analysis shows that the theoretical analyze with our decoupling principle for the SMV based MMSE estimation of sparse signal vectors with i.n.i.d. non-zero components matches well with the numerical results.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalIEEE Transactions on Communications
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • activity detection
  • Approximation algorithms
  • cell-free massive MIMO
  • Channel estimation
  • complex Bayesian approximate message passing
  • Estimation
  • Fading channels
  • likelihood ratio test
  • massive connectivity
  • Massive MIMO
  • Mean square error methods
  • MMSE estimation
  • Signal processing algorithms

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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