Dirty-paper coding versus TDMA for MIMO broadcast channels

Nihar Jindal, Andrea Goldsmith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

289 Scopus citations


We compare the capacity of dirty-paper coding (DPC) to that of time-division multiple access (TDMA) for a multiple-antenna (multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO)) Gaussian broadcast channel (BC). We find that the sum-rate capacity (achievable using DPC) of the multiple-antenna BC is at most min(M, K) times the largest single-user capacity (i.e., the TDMA sum-rate) in the system, where M is the number of transmit antennas and K is the number of receivers. This result is independent of the number of receive antennas and the channel gain matrix, and is valid at all signal-to-noise ratios (SNRs). We investigate the tightness of this bound in a time-varying channel (assuming perfect channel knowledge at receivers and transmitters) where the channel experiences uncorrelated Rayleigh fading and in some situations we find that the dirty paper gain is upper-bounded by the ratio of transmit-to-receive antennas. We also show that min(M, K) upper-bounds the sum-rate gain of successive decoding over TDMA for the uplink channel, where M is the number of receive antennas at the base station and K is the number of transmitters.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1783-1794
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Information Theory
Issue number5
StatePublished - May 2005
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

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


  • Broadcast channel (BC)
  • Channel capacity
  • Dirty-paper coding (DPC)
  • Multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) systems
  • Time-division multiple access (TDMA)


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