Massive multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) avails of simple transceiver design which can tackle many drawbacks of relay systems in terms of complicated signal processing, latency, and noise amplification. However, the cost and circuit complexity of having one radio frequency (RF) chain dedicated to each antenna element are prohibitive in practice. In this paper, we address this critical issue in amplify-andforward (AF) relay systems using a hybrid analog and digital (A/D) transceiver structure. More specifically, leveraging the channel long-term properties, we design the analog beamformer which aims to minimize the channel estimation error and remain invariant over a long timescale. Then, the beamforming is completed by simple digital signal processing, i.e., maximum ratio combining/maximum ratio transmission (MRC/MRT) or zero-forcing (ZF) in the baseband domain. We present analytical bounds on the achievable spectral efficiency taking into account the spatial correlation and imperfect channel state information at the relay station. Our analytical results reveal that the hybrid A/D structure with ZF digital processor exploits spatial correlation and offers a higher spectral efficiency compared to the hybrid A/D structure with MRC/MRT scheme. Our numerical results showcase that the hybrid A/D beamforming design captures nearly 95% of the spectral efficiency of a fully digital AF relaying topology even by removing half of the RF chains. It is also shown that the hybrid A/D structure is robust to coarse quantization, and even with 2-bit resolution, the system can achieve more than 93% of the spectral efficiency offered by the same hybrid A/D topology with infinite resolution phase shifters.
|Number of pages||16|
|Journal||IEEE Transactions on Communications|
|Early online date||28 Aug 2018|
|Publication status||Early online date - 28 Aug 2018|
- School of Electronics, Electrical Engineering and Computer Science - UKRI Future Leaders Fellow
- Institute of Electronics, Communications & Information Technology