Massive MIMO Systems for 5G and Beyond Networks-Overview, Recent Trends, Challenges, and Future Research Direction

Sensors (Basel). 2020 May 12;20(10):2753. doi: 10.3390/s20102753.


The global bandwidth shortage in the wireless communication sector has motivated the study and exploration of wireless access technology known as massive Multiple-Input Multiple-Output (MIMO). Massive MIMO is one of the key enabling technology for next-generation networks, which groups together antennas at both transmitter and the receiver to provide high spectral and energy efficiency using relatively simple processing. Obtaining a better understating of the massive MIMO system to overcome the fundamental issues of this technology is vital for the successful deployment of 5G-and beyond-networks to realize various applications of the intelligent sensing system. In this paper, we present a comprehensive overview of the key enabling technologies required for 5G and 6G networks, highlighting the massive MIMO systems. We discuss all the fundamental challenges related to pilot contamination, channel estimation, precoding, user scheduling, energy efficiency, and signal detection in a massive MIMO system and discuss some state-of-the-art mitigation techniques. We outline recent trends such as terahertz communication, ultra massive MIMO (UM-MIMO), visible light communication (VLC), machine learning, and deep learning for massive MIMO systems. Additionally, we discuss crucial open research issues that direct future research in massive MIMO systems for 5G and beyond networks.

Keywords: 5G; 6G; beamforming; channel estimation; massive MIMO; millimeter waves; pilot contamination; signal detection; spectral efficiency; terahertz spectrum.

Publication types

  • Review