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Beam-Based Secure Physical Layer Key Generation for mmWave Massive MIMO System

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Part of the Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering book series (LNICST,volume 352)


Massive MIMO system greatly enriches the randomness of the secret keys in the physical layer and increases the rate of key generation. However, it is not practical to obtain full channel state information for key generation in actual communication scenarios due to a large number of additional signaling overhead. In this paper, we proposed a feasible physical layer key generation scheme by using the beam information as a random source. The procedure for key generation is designed based on the current beam management mechanism in 5G NR. Therefore, the secret key is synchronously generated in the process of two-stage beam search between the gNB and the UE before data transmission, and the additional signaling overhead for key generation is little. Furthermore, to cope with the non-uniform distributed characteristics of the beams, we adopt Huffman code in the encoding of the beam index, thereby improving the efficiency of the key generation. Simulation results show that the proposed scheme can achieve mutual information per bit as high as 0.97, which is 2% to 3% better than that of equal length coding. Furthermore, the bit disagreement rate can be less than 1% in a harsh communication environment with a signal-to-noise ratio of −10 dB.


  • Physical layer security
  • Beam management
  • MIMO
  • Secret key generation
  • Huffman coding

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  • DOI: 10.1007/978-3-030-67720-6_3
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This work is supported by the Open Project of A Laboratory under Grant No. 2017XXAQ08, the National Natural Science Foundation of China under Grant No.61971069 and 61801051.

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Correspondence to Danpu Liu .

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Gao, H., Huang, Y., Liu, D. (2021). Beam-Based Secure Physical Layer Key Generation for mmWave Massive MIMO System. In: Gao, H., Fan, P., Wun, J., Xiaoping, X., Yu, J., Wang, Y. (eds) Communications and Networking. ChinaCom 2020. Lecture Notes of the Institute for Computer Sciences, Social Informatics and Telecommunications Engineering, vol 352. Springer, Cham.

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