Optimizing Throughput Performance in Distributed MIMO Wi-Fi Networks Using Deep Reinforcement Learning

Neelakantan Nurani Krishnan, Eric Torkildson, Narayan B. Mandayam, Dipankar Raychaudhuri, Enrico Henrik Rantala, Klaus Doppler

Research output: Contribution to journalArticle

1 Scopus citations


This paper explores the feasibility of leveraging deep reinforcement learning (DRL) to enable dynamic resource management in Wi-Fi networks implementing distributed multi-user MIMO (D-MIMO). D-MIMO is a technique by which a set of wireless access points are synchronized and grouped together to jointly serve multiple users simultaneously. This paper addresses two dynamic resource management problems germane to D-MIMO Wi-Fi networks: (i) channel assignment of D-MIMO groups, and (ii) deciding how to cluster access points to form D-MIMO groups, in order to maximize user throughput performance. These problems are known to be NP-Hard and only heuristic solutions exist in literature. We construct a DRL framework through which a learning agent interacts with a D-MIMO Wi-Fi network, learns about the network environment, and successfully converges to policies which address the aforementioned problems. Through extensive simulations and on-line training based on D-MIMO Wi-Fi networks, this paper demonstrates the efficacy of DRL agents in achieving an improvement of 20% in user throughput performance compared to heuristic solutions, particularly when network conditions are dynamic. This work also showcases the effectiveness of DRL agents in meeting multiple network objectives simultaneously, for instance, maximizing throughput of users as well as fairness of throughput among them.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8846066
Pages (from-to)135-150
Number of pages16
JournalIEEE Transactions on Cognitive Communications and Networking
Issue number1
StatePublished - Mar 2020
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Artificial Intelligence


  • artificial intelligence
  • MIMO systems
  • Wireless LAN

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Optimizing Throughput Performance in Distributed MIMO Wi-Fi Networks Using Deep Reinforcement Learning'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

  • Cite this