Blind Joint MIMO Channel Estimation and Decoding

Thomas R. Dean, Mary Wootters, Andrea J. Goldsmith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We propose a method for multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) decoding when channel-state information (CSI) is unknown to both the transmitter and receiver. The proposed method requires some structure in the transmitted signal for the decoding to be effective, in particular that the underlying sources are drawn from a hypercubic space. Our proposed technique fits a minimum volume parallelepiped to the received samples. This problem can be expressed as a non-convex optimization problem that can be solved with high probability by gradient descent. Our blind decoding algorithm can be used when communicating over unknown MIMO wireless channels using either binary phase-shift keying or MPAM modulation. We apply our technique to jointly estimate MIMO-channel gain matrices and decode the underlying transmissions with only knowledge of the transmitted constellation and without the use of pilot symbols. Our results provide theoretical guarantees that the proposed algorithm is correct when applied to MIMO systems with four or fewer transmit antennas. Empirical results show small sample size requirements, making this algorithm suitable for block-fading channels with coherence times typically seen in practice. Our approach has a loss of less than 3 dB compared to zero forcing with perfect CSI, imposing a similar performance penalty as space-time coding techniques without the loss of rate incurred by those techniques.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8509645
Pages (from-to)2507-2524
Number of pages18
JournalIEEE Transactions on Information Theory
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2019
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Information Systems
  • Computer Science Applications
  • Library and Information Sciences


  • MIMO
  • blind source separation
  • multiuser detection
  • optimization


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