IRS-Enhanced OFDMA: Joint Resource Allocation and Passive Beamforming Optimization

Yifei Yang, Shuowen Zhang, Rui Zhang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

30 Citations (Scopus)


Intelligent reflecting surface (IRS) is an emerging technique to enhance the wireless communication spectral efficiency with low hardware and energy cost. In this letter, we consider the integration of IRS to an orthogonal frequency division multiple access (OFDMA) based multiuser downlink communication system, and study the pertinent joint optimization of the IRS reflection coefficients and OFDMA time-frequency resource block as well as power allocations to maximize the users' common (minimum) rate. Specifically, due to the lack of frequency-selective passive beamforming capability at the IRS, only one set of reflection coefficients can be designed for adapting to a large number of channels of multiple users over different frequency sub-bands. To tackle this difficulty, we propose a novel dynamic passive beamforming scheme where the IRS reflection coefficients are dynamically adjusted over different time slots within each channel coherence block to create artificial time-varying channels and select only a subset of the users to be simultaneously served in each time slot, thus achieving a higher passive beamforming gain. Although the formulated optimization problem is non-convex, we propose an efficient algorithm to obtain a high-quality suboptimal solution to it. Numerical results show that the proposed scheme significantly improves the system common rate over the setup without IRS and that with random IRS reflection coefficients. Moreover, our proposed dynamic passive beamforming outperforms the fixed passive beamforming which employs a common set of reflection coefficients in each channel coherence block, by more flexibly balancing between passive beamforming and multiuser diversity gains.

Original languageEnglish
Article number8964457
Pages (from-to)760-764
Number of pages5
JournalIEEE Wireless Communications Letters
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Jun 2020
Externally publishedYes


  • Intelligent reflecting surface
  • passive beamforming
  • resource allocation

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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