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Channel measurements and models for 6G: current status and future outlook


With the commercialization of fifth generation networks worldwide, research into sixth generation (6G) networks has been launched to meet the demands for high data rates and low latency for future services. A wireless propagation channel is the transmission medium to transfer information between the transmitter and the receiver. Moreover, channel properties determine the ultimate performance limit of wireless communication systems. Thus, conducting channel research is a prerequisite to designing 6G wireless communication systems. In this paper, we first introduce several emerging technologies and applications for 6G, such as terahertz communication, industrial Internet of Things, space-air-ground integrated network, and machine learning, and point out the developing trends of 6G channel models. Then, we give a review of channel measurements and models for the technologies and applications. Finally, the outlook for 6G channel measurements and models is discussed.

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Correspondence to Pan Tang.

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Jian-hua ZHANG designed the research, and revised and edited the final version. Pan TANG leaded the drafting of the manuscript. Li YU, Tao JIANG, and Lei TIAN helped draft the manuscript.

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Jian-hua ZHANG, Pan TANG, Li YU, Tao JIANG, and Lei TIAN declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Project supported by the National Key R&D Program of China (No. 2018YFB1801101), the National Science Fund for Distinguished Young Scholars, China (No. 61925102), the Key Project of State Key Lab of Networking and Switching Technology, China (No. NST20180105), Huawei, and ZTE Corporation

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Zhang, Jh., Tang, P., Yu, L. et al. Channel measurements and models for 6G: current status and future outlook. Front Inform Technol Electron Eng 21, 39–61 (2020).

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Key words

  • Channel measurements
  • Channel models
  • Sixth generation
  • Terahertz
  • Industrial Internet of Things
  • Space-air-ground integrated network
  • Machine learning

CLC number

  • TN929.5