It is predicted that wireless network traffic will increase 1000 times in the next decade. The exponential traffic growth is not uniform across geographical areas and mainly takes place in indoor hot spots. Hence, high capacity indoor venues represent the biggest network capacity increase challenge.

The recently emerged three-demension Multiple-input Multiple-Output (3D MIMO) technology provides a promising dimension to provide extra capacity gain in hot spots. In particular, the 3D deployment of small cells (SCs) equipped with 3D MIMO antenna arrays will take advantage of 3D distribution of user equipment (UE) in typical high capacity venues, and represents an excellent technical combination to address the indoor high capacity challenge. The 3D deployment of SCs with 3D MIMO antenna arrays faces technical challenges ranging from 3D MIMO antenna array design, performance evaluation, the lack of understanding of 3D MIMO SC network performance limits to the optimal 3D SC network deployment.


  • Characterize and model indoor 3D MIMO channels for typical indoor hot-spot environments
  • Develop a system-level simulation platform with 3D building information for indoor 3D MIMO small-cell networks
  • Develop a reliable Over-The-Air (OTA) antenna characterization method for 3D MIMO small cells
  • Characterize OTA performance in laboratory conditions as compared to real-life 3D MIMO small cell scenarios
  • Obtain a fundamental understanding of the network performance gains (including overall spectral efficiency and cell-edge UE throughput) achievable by a 3D deployment of indoor small-cell APs equipped with 3D MIMO array antennas
  • Develop techniques for jointly optimizing the indoor 3D deployment of small-cell APs and their 3D MIMO configurations
  • Provide 3D MIMO small-cell network planning and deployment guidelines for typical 3D indoor scenarios

The achievement of the above objectives will provide crucial inputs for multiple-antenna and 5G/B5G system design, and will increase network capacity in indoor hot spots by 20-30%.


is3DMIMO provides in total 291 person-months of researcher secondments and high-quality interdisciplinary, intersectoral and international research training and knowledge sharing activities for a new generation of scientific researchers, who will benefit directly from the entrepreneurial and creative environment created by the is3DMIMO consortium, and deliver impact at both European and international levels. It will produce a critical mass of highly-skilled professionals, who are advantaged by their intersectoral and international mobility.