Techniques of detection, estimation and coding for fading channels
The thesis describes techniques of detection, coding and estimation, for use in high speed serial modems operating over fading channels such as HF radio and land mobile radio links. The performance of the various systems that employ the above techniques are obtained via computer simulation tests. A review of the characteristics of HF radio channels is first presented, leading to the development of an appropriate channel model which imposes Rayleigh fading on the transmitted signal. Detection processes for a 4.8 kbit/s HF radio modem are then discussed, the emphasis, here, being on variants of the maximum likelihood detector that is implemented by the Viterbi algorithm. The performance of these detectors are compared with that of a nonlinear equalizer operating under the same conditions, and the detector which offers the best compromise between performance and complexity is chosen for further tests. Forward error correction, in the form of trellis coded modulation, is next introduced. An appropriate 8-PSK coded modulation scheme is discussed, and its operation over the above mentioned HF radio modem is evaluated. Performance comparisons are made of the coded and uncoded systems. Channel estimation techniques for fast fading channels akin to cellular land mobile radio links, are next discussed. A suitable model for a fast fading channel is developed, and some novel estimators are tested over this channel. Computer simulation tests are also used to study the feasibility of the simultaneous transmission of two 4-level QAM signals occupying the same frequency band, when each of these signals are transmitted at 24 kbit/s over two independently fading channels, to a single receiver. A novel combined detector/estimator is developed for this purpose. Finally, the performance of the complete 4.8 kbit/s HF radio modem is obtained, when all the functions of detection, estimation and prefiltering are present, where the prefilter and associated processor use a recently developed technique for the adjustment of its tap gains and for the estimation of the minimum phase sampled impulse response.