UAV-enabled communication using NOMA

Ali Arshad Nasir, Hoang Duong Tuan, Trung Q. Duong, H. Vincent Poor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

154 Scopus citations


Unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) can be deployed as flying base stations (BSs) to leverage the strength of line-of-sight connections and effectively support the coverage and throughput of wireless communication. This paper considers a multiuser communication system, in which a single-antenna UAV-BS serves a large number of ground users by employing non-orthogonal multiple access (NOMA). The max-min rate optimization problem is formulated under total power, total bandwidth, UAV altitude, and antenna beamwidth constraints. The objective of max-min rate optimization is non-convex in all optimization variables, i.e., UAV altitude, transmit antenna beamwidth, power allocation, and bandwidth allocation for multiple users. A path-following algorithm is proposed to solve the formulated problem. Next, orthogonal multiple access (OMA) and dirty paper coding (DPC)-based max-min rate optimization problems are formulated and respective path-following algorithms are developed to solve them. The numerical results show that NOMA outperforms OMA and achieves rates similar to those attained by DPC. In addition, a clear rate gain is observed by jointly optimizing all the parameters rather than optimizing a subset of parameters, which confirms the desirability of their joint optimization.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8672190
Pages (from-to)5126-5138
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE Transactions on Communications
Issue number7
StatePublished - Jul 2019
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)
  • dirty paper coding (DPC)
  • non-convex optimization
  • non-orthogonal multiple access (NOMA)
  • orthogonal multiple access (OMA)
  • throughput


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