Favorable propagation (FP) and channel hardening (CH) are desired properties in massive multiple-input multipleoutput (MIMO) systems. To date, these properties have primarily been analyzed for classical statistical channel models, or ray-based models with very specific angular parameters and distributions. This paper presents a thorough mathematical analysis of the asymptotic system behavior for ray-based channels with arbitrary ray distributions, and considers two types of antenna array structures at the cellular base station: a uniform linear array (ULA) and a uniform planar array (UPA). In addition to FP and channel hardening, we analyze the large system potential (LSP) which measures the asymptotic ratio of the expected power in the desired channel to the expected total interference power when both the antenna and user numbers grow. LSP is said to hold when this ratio converges to a positive constant. The results demonstrate that while FP is guaranteed in ray-based channels, CH may or may not occur depending on the nature of the model. Furthermore, we demonstrate that LSP will not normally hold as the expected interference power grows logarithmically for both ULAs and UPAs relative to the power in the desired channel as the system size increases. Nevertheless, we identify some fundamental and attractive properties of massive MIMO in this limiting regime.
Li, S., Smith, P., Dmochowski , P. A., Tataria, H., Matthaiou, M., & Yin, J. (2020). Massive MIMO Asymptotics for Ray-Based Propagation Channels. IEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications. https://doi.org/10.1109/TWC.2020.2979146