Superimposed pilots: An alternative pilot structure to mitigate pilot contamination in massive MIMO

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contributionScientificpeer-review


Research units

  • University of Sheffield


Superimposed pilots are proposed as an alternative to time-multiplexed pilot and data symbols for mitigating pilot contamination in massive multiple-input multiple-output systems. Provided that the uplink duration is larger than the total number of users in the system, superimposed pilots enable each user to be assigned a unique pilot sequence, thereby allowing for a significant reduction in pilot contamination. Channel estimation performance in the uplink is further improved using an iterative data-aided algorithm. Based on approximate expressions for the uplink signal-to-interference-plus-noise ratio, it is shown that superimposed pilots provide a better performance when compared with methods that use time-multiplexed data and pilots. Numerical simulations are used to validate the approximations and the improved performance of the proposed method.


Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationProceedings of the 2016 IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech and Signal Processing, ICASSP 2016
Publication statusPublished - 18 May 2016
MoE publication typeA4 Article in a conference publication
EventIEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing - Shanghai, China
Duration: 20 Mar 201625 Mar 2016
Conference number: 41

Publication series

Name Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers Inc.
ISSN (Print)1520-6149
ISSN (Electronic)2379-190X


ConferenceIEEE International Conference on Acoustics, Speech, and Signal Processing
Abbreviated titleICASSP 2016
Internet address

    Research areas

  • Massive MIMO, pilot decontamination, superimposed pilots

ID: 10349960