Research interests


Postgraduate research supervision



Dr. Mahdi Boloursaz Mashhadi, Deniz Gunduz (2021)Pruning the Pilots: Deep Learning-Based Pilot Design and Channel Estimation for MIMO-OFDM Systems, In: IEEE transactions on wireless communications20(10)pp. 6315-6328 IEEE

With the large number of antennas and subcarriers the overhead due to pilot transmission for channel estimation can be prohibitive in wideband massive multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) systems. This can degrade the overall spectral efficiency significantly, and as a result, curtail the potential benefits of massive MIMO. In this paper, we propose a neural network (NN)-based joint pilot design and downlink channel estimation scheme for frequency division duplex (FDD) MIMO orthogonal frequency division multiplex (OFDM) systems. The proposed NN architecture uses fully connected layers for frequency-aware pilot design, and outperforms linear minimum mean square error (LMMSE) estimation by exploiting inherent correlations in MIMO channel matrices utilizing convolutional NN layers. Our proposed NN architecture uses a non-local attention module to learn longer range correlations in the channel matrix to further improve the channel estimation performance.We also propose an effective pilot reduction technique by gradually pruning less significant neurons from the dense NN layers during training. This constitutes a novel application of NN pruning to reduce the pilot transmission overhead. Our pruning-based pilot reduction technique reduces the overhead by allocating pilots across subcarriers non-uniformly and exploiting the inter-frequency and inter-antenna correlations in the channel matrix efficiently through convolutional layers and attention module.

Dr. Mahdi Boloursaz Mashhadi, Qianqian Yang, Deniz Gunduz (2021)Distributed Deep Convolutional Compression for Massive MIMO CSI Feedback, In: IEEE transactions on wireless communications20(4)pp. 2621-2633 IEEE

Massive multiple-input multiple-output (MIMO) systems require downlink channel state information (CSI) at the base station (BS) to achieve spatial diversity and multiplexing gains. In a frequency division duplex (FDD) multiuser massive MIMO network, each user needs to compress and feedback its downlink CSI to the BS. The CSI overhead scales with the number of antennas, users and subcarriers, and becomes a major bottleneck for the overall spectral efficiency. In this paper, we propose a deep learning (DL)-based CSI compression scheme, called DeepCMC , composed of convolutional layers followed by quantization and entropy coding blocks. In comparison with previous DL-based CSI reduction structures, DeepCMC proposes a novel fully-convolutional neural network (NN) architecture, with residual layers at the decoder, and incorporates quantization and entropy coding blocks into its design. DeepCMC is trained to minimize a weighted rate-distortion cost, which enables a trade-off between the CSI quality and its feedback overhead. Simulation results demonstrate that DeepCMC outperforms the state of the art CSI compression schemes in terms of the reconstruction quality of CSI for the same compression rate. We also propose a distributed version of DeepCMC for a multi-user MIMO scenario to encode and reconstruct the CSI from multiple users in a distributed manner. Distributed DeepCMC not only utilizes the inherent CSI structures of a single MIMO user for compression, but also benefits from the correlations among the channel matrices of nearby users to further improve the performance in comparison with DeepCMC. We also propose a reduced-complexity training method for distributed DeepCMC, allowing to scale it to multiple users, and suggest a cluster-based distributed DeepCMC approach for practical implementation.

Matteo Zecchin, Mahdi Boloursaz Mashhadi, Mikolaj Jankowski, Deniz Gunduz, Marios Kountouris, David Gesbert (2022)LIDAR and Position-Aided mmWave Beam Selection with Non-local CNNs and Curriculum Training, In: IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)

Efficient millimeter wave (mmWave) beam selection in vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I) communication is a crucial yet challenging task due to the narrow mmWave beamwidth and high user mobility. To reduce the search overhead of iterative beam discovery procedures, contextual information from light detection and ranging (LIDAR) sensors mounted on vehicles has been leveraged by data-driven methods to produce useful side information. In this paper, we propose a lightweight neural network (NN) architecture along with the corresponding LIDAR preprocessing, which significantly outperforms previous works. Our solution comprises multiple novelties that improve both the convergence speed and the final accuracy of the model. In particular, we define a novel loss function inspired by the knowledge distillation idea, introduce a curriculum training approach exploiting line-of-sight (LOS)/non-line-of-sight (NLOS) information, and we propose a non-local attention module to improve the performance for the more challenging NLOS cases. Simulation results on benchmark datasets show that utilizing solely LIDAR data and the receiver position, our NN-based beam selection scheme can achieve 79.9% throughput of an exhaustive beam sweeping approach without any beam search overhead and 95% by searching among as few as 6 beams. In a typical mmWave V2I scenario, our proposed method considerably reduces the beam search time required to achieve a desired throughput, in comparison with the inverse fingerprinting and hierarchical beam selection schemes.

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