Open Access

OV-CDMA System: Concept and Implementation

EURASIP Journal on Wireless Communications and Networking20082008:460628

Received: 7 September 2007

Accepted: 25 January 2008

Published: 13 February 2008


A new method is proposed to achieve a multirate overlapped code division multiple access system (OV-CDMA) based on a novel code overlapping procedure. The signal-to-interference ratio (SIR) performance has been investigated for such system. A channel model that allows multirate overlapped transmission is presented based on which a closed form solution for the SIR has been derived. In addition, a simple yet very efficient block diagram of the transmitter and the receiver architecture has been proposed for such a system. Based on the proposed block diagram, the encoder-decoder has been implemented using an FPGA. Numerical results show that the newly proposed OV-CDMA scheme outperforms the classical variable processing gain fast frequency hopping CDMA (VPG-FFH-CDMA) for different system scenarios. Finally, real-time measurements have been successfully obtained using a hardware prototype utilizing the simple Xilinx Spartan IIE (XC2S200E) FPGA.

1. Introduction

During the past few years, there has been a growing interest in the development of broadband wireless communication networks for multimedia applications. The communication services in such networks can be high- and low-speed data, video, and many others with different performance and traffic requirements [13].

Classical fast frequency hopping CDMA (FFH-CDMA) has been discussed in many works [46]. A multirate FFH-CDMA system using variable processing gain (PG) (VPG-FFH-CDMA) has been proposed in [3, 7, 8]. The intention was to guarantee the one-to-one correspondence between the PG and the source transmission rate. The drawback of this system is the drastic decrease in the transmitted signal power especially for higher rate users for which the PG becomes very small. The solution to this problem is the use of power control [9]; on the other hand, Kwong and Yang in [7, 8] considered the multilength frequency hopping codes. Using these codes, rate and QoS are now dynamically matched to users' needs. The cutoff rate of the system is still limited by the physical constraints of the codes.

In this work, the general problem we considered is how much we can increase the transmission rates of different classes of traffic beyond the nominal permitted rates. Our aim is to optimize performance to meet the quality of service (QoS) requirements given a fixed number of users in the network and a multimedia distribution. For an optimized family of codes, we will show that it is possible to increase a class bit rate beyond the nominal rate without decreasing the PG of the desired user or allowing any time delay between the data symbols. Our system achieves a multirate transmission by introducing an overlap between the transmitted symbols, hence the name overlapped code division multiple access system (OV-CDMA). In addition, we will consider the implementation of the OV-CDMA system [10]. The control unit of the transmitter and the receiver has been accomplished using FPGA. A pipeline technique is used to achieve a high-computational efficiency. A prototype is built and tested. We have been able to achieve a transmission rate ranging from 0.1 to 20 Mbps. It is imperative to mention that the five-channel case implemented in this paper can be easily modified to higher number of channels. This is the main advantage of FPGA [11].

The paper is organized as follows. In Section 2, we present the OV-CDMA encoding/decoding technique. Section 3 derives the performance of the OV-CDMA system. Section 4 describes the OV-CDMA system implementation where the block diagrams of the transmitter and the receiver are presented and discussed. In addition, the hardware implementation using FPGA is discussed in Section 5. Section 6 contains the numerical results and the measurements. Finally, the conclusion is presented in Section 7.

2. OV-CDMA System Model

Consider a multirate OV-CDMA communication system that supports M users in N different classes, which share the same medium [10]. The corresponding PGs for each class are given by . The nominal bit duration is given by with being the chip duration. The corresponding nominal rate is . When the data rate increases beyond , multibits can be coded during the time period and transmitted together as revealed in Figure 1. In this figure, the PG is , which means that five channels are used in the coding process. When user k transmits using rate , it introduces a bit overlap coefficient according to which the new rate is related to the nominal rate through the following:
In Figure 1, the overlapping coefficient is ; therefore, the new transmission rate is . This means that the new transmission rate is 2.5 times the transmission rate without overlap. At a given receiver, the decoder observes practically multicode which is delayed according to the transmission rate of the source as shown in Figure 1.
Figure 1

Coding method of the proposed OV-CDMA system with and .

In this paper, we assume the following: (1) a chip and bit synchronous system and a discrete rate variation, (2) all users in the class-s, have the same bit overlap coefficient ; thus each class is characterized by , and (3) a unit transmission power for all the users.

2.1. Signal Structure

We define and as the hopping pattern and the baseband signal, respectively, where t and f represent the time and frequency dimensions. From Figure 1, the bit stream can be seen to be serial-to-parallel converted to v pulses. Assuming that the desired user is using the class-m, which is characterized by a PG and an overlapping coefficient . Since the desired user nominal time period is , we are interested only in modeling the k th interfering channel during a time period . Because the bit from the v-bits is delayed by , this suggests that the channel model, as seen by the desired receiver, can be represented as a tapped delay line with tap spacing of from left and from right. The tap weight coefficients depending on whether the transmitted bit is zero or one. The truncated tapped delay line model as seen by the desired receiver is shown in Figure 2. Accordingly, the transmitted signal is given by
Figure 2

OV-CDMA channel model.

Lemma 1.

Given an interferer k with and the desired user with . At the desired receiver end, during the nominal time period , the observed total number of taps in channel is given by

where .

Lemma 2.

Given an interferer with and the desired user with , the observed total number of transmitted codes from transmitter that undergo a total overlap with the desired correlator during and excluding the normal bit is given by
where is the highest integer smaller than and is given by
The received signal at the input of the decoder is therefore given by

where n (t) is an additive white Gaussian noise (AWGN) with two-sided power spectral density .

2.2. Decoder's Output

Without loss of generality, we assume that the correlation-matched filter is matched to the zeroth signal with class-m. The output of the matched filter correlator will be
where is a zero-mean AWGN with variance . The multiple access interference (MAI) I k from user k that transmits data with rate can be written as
for all . is the Hamming function [10]. The sequences and are numbers representing frequencies used at time t for the k th interferer and the desired user, respectively. Notice that . In addition, we define a new performance parameter called the auto-interference caused by the desired user's signal and it is given by

3. OV-CDMA Performance Evaluation

Since the user may set a connection for a particular multimedia class and modify it dynamically, the index s is a discrete random variable with a certain prior probability
with and we call the multimedia probability mass function (pmf) for user k. I k , for all , is assumed to be an independent random variable. Hence the variance of the decision variable is
and represent the interference power caused by an active user k using class-s and the auto-interference power caused by the desired user due to overlapping, respectively, and they are given by
where is the expectation operator over all possible values of the overlapping bits for assuming that . and the cross terms generated from squaring the summation in become zeros because the average over the bit is zero, which enables us to write
Let , we can write
If we define and , then we substitute into (12), the SIR experienced by any active user that uses class-m is

where is a random variable with a Rayleigh distribution assuming a Rayleigh fading channel. Thus the distribution of is exponential [12].

3.1. Effective Increase in the Number of Hits

Proposition 1.

For one-coincidence sequences with nonrepeating frequencies [13, 14], the expected value of the increase in the number of hits caused by any active interferer with on a desired user with is given by (19). In addition, the effective increase of the number of hits due to the auto-interference is
where , , , and are given throughout Lemmas 1 and 2, and F is the total number of available frequencies,

3.2. Average SIR

Assuming that the overlapping codes are independent virtual active users and one-coincidence sequences, we can compute the average correlations given in (13). In addition, if we assume that the multimedia pmf is the same for every user, , the average SIR for the desired user with will be

where . In (20), we have been able to separate the interference power into the normal MAI power caused by active users when and the one caused by virtual users that overlap with the desired user's code when .

4. OV-CDMA System Implementation

Throughout this paper, and without loss of generality, the analysis is based on the five-channel example presented in Figure 1. The problem of designing a transmitter that performs the overlapping operation is simplified to find a way to transmit more that one frequency channels duringthe same chip period T c as shown in Figure 1.

4.1. OV-CDMA Transmitter Implementation

For example, during the first period T c , the transmitter should send channels , , and at the same time. Classical FFH-CDMA transmitters use what is widely known as frequency synthesizer to generate one carrier frequency at each T c seconds. It cannot generate multifrequency at the same time. For this reason, we propose a new architecture based on multifrequency generators and a switching operation that is performed by a central processing unit as revealed by Figure 4(a). The control unit will determine the switches which must be closed and the other which should be open. The result is summed and transmitted. This task can be easily accomplished using the desired user's code as shown in Figure 4(b). The above five-by-five matrix of binary data represents the digital control code that must be used by the control unit for the five-channel example shown in Figure 1. Note that during the first chip duration, the switches are controlled by the first row of the matrix such that , , and are closed, and and are open. This enables us to transmit simultaneously channels , , and . This matrix will be repeated every bit duration .

4.2. OV-CDMA Receiver Implementation

The receiver should first perform the decoding operation of the overlapped code then decide whether the transmitted bit is zero or one. The block diagram of the receiver is shown in Figure 5. It is composed of two major parts: the analog part and the digital part using FPGA. In the analog circuitry part, the incoming radio frequency signal is detected using the CDM2502 antenna. The incoming electric signal is subdivided into five channels with equal power. Then, for every channel, a bandpass filter (BPF) is used with a center frequency , which is one of the employed channels by the desired user. An energy detector (ED) is used to measure the energy of the filtered signal. An analog-to-digital converter (ADC) is utilized in order to convert the analog information from the ED into digital one so that it can be accepted by the FPGA logic.

It is imperative to mention that we will use the same code logic used in the encoder side. This code replica is used to dispread the received signal and to obtain the transmitted data stream. The outputs of the ADCs are held inside the registers then shifted to the right at every time period T c . After five consecutive cycles, a matrix is constructed. The contents of this matrix are added, then the result is compared to a predefined detection threshold. The compared data is the energy added after five consecutive cycles. If the result is less than the threshold, it is estimated that 0 is transmitted; otherwise, it is judged that 1 is sent.

5. Digital Implementation Using FPGA

After data is received, it is digitally processed using FPGA technology. The target FPGA family is a Xilinx Spartan IIE (XC2S200E) due to the availability of boards based on this family in our labs. In order to achieve high performance, pipelining technique was used. A block diagram of the FPGA implementation is shown in Figure 6. Even though the figure shows an example of eight channels, only five channels were implemented in hardware. However, our implementation can be generalized to any number of channels.

For an N-channel receiver, an addition is required every bit period T n , which is composed of N chip periods T c ; in addition, each T c seconds is composed of 16-bit stream. The addition is performed in a tree fashion (see Figure 6). Therefore, it takes cycles to sum N numbers (N channels). Since we need addition, the summation should be performed N times; that is cycles. However, by using pipelining technique, we were able to reduce the number of cycles for an addition to .

This high-speed implementation is achieved at the expense of adders. In order to reduce the area occupied by the design, serial adders were used. Even though the summation of 16-by-16 bits requires 16 cycles, the clock frequency achieved is several times higher than that of a parallel adder.

As an example, consider an 8-channel receiver (Figure 6). Every chip period T c eight 8-bit ADCs convert the received analog signals into eight bits, which are extended into 16 bits and shifted serially into eight 16-bit shift registers. The serial outputs from every two shift registers are fed into a serial adder, which will perform the summation and generate the sum of one bit at a time. The output of each adder is connected to the input of another 16-bit shift register in order to store the results of the summation. Each module (M-I) in Figure 6 corresponds to two shift registers at the input of an adder and another shift register connected to the output of the adder.

For this eight channels example, the proposed implementation consists of a three-stage pipeline that performs the addition in a tree fashion. After initially filling the pipeline stages (this requires 3 clock cycles), all pipeline stages will be performing similar tasks. For instance, every clock cycle, Stage 1 would be performing four summations on the newly received data from the ADCs, whereas Stage 2 would be doing two parallel summations on the already summed data from Stage 1 that corresponds to the older ADC conversion. At the same time, Stage 3 would be summing the results from Stage 2 of the previous data. After eight clock cycles, an output bit is generated based on a threshold comparison, and the accumulator register is cleared in order to start accumulating data for a new output bit. This process is repeated after each eight clock cycles.

Table 1 summarizes the mapping results in terms of logical resources and maximal clock period on a Xilinx Spartan IIE XC2S200E speed grade-7 FPGA. As shown in Table 1, for our 5-channel receiver, the utilization of the FPGA chip did not exceed 5%, which means that we can easily upgrade our design into cases including larger number of channels on the same Spartan IIE used. Moreover, the clock period achieved was less than 10 nanoseconds.
Table 1

Implementation results.

Number of slices

138 out of 2352 5%

Number of slice flip flops

232 out of 4704 4%

Number of 4 input LUTs

86 out of 4704 1%

Max. clock frequency

100.675 MHz

6. Numerical Results and Measurments

For the purpose of comparing the performance of our newly proposed OV-CDMA system with existing multirate systems, Figure 3 shows the SIR comparison between the OV-CDMA and the classical VPG-FFH-CDMA systems while varying the transmission rate. The transmission rate is normalized in the sense that it begins by zero when for the OV-CDMA system and when for the VPG FFH-CDMA system. The normalized transmission rate increases by increasing or decreasing for the OV-CDMA and the VPG-FFH-CDMA, respectively. Notice that, for either or users, the SIR for the OV-CDMA system is always greater than that of the VPG-FFH-CDMA system.
Figure 3

Average SIR versus the normalized transmission rate.

Figure 4

(a) Five-channel OV-CDMA transmitter, (b) OV-CDMA digital control unit.

Figure 5

Five-channel OV-CDMA receiver.

Figure 6

Logic block diagram of the decoder and the decision of the receiver.

In Figure 7, we present the simulated timing diagram for the OV-CDMA receiver in which the input signals ADC1, ADC2, ADC3, ADC4, and ADC5 to the FPGA are coming from the ADCs. This simulation is performed for an overlapping coefficient . Each input is composed of eight parallel bits. Each output bit lasts for the whole period of five data reception, after which the new bit is output based on the last five data reception. The optimal detection threshold is obtained using the maximum likelihood detection scheme. After comparison with the threshold, the decision for the possible transmitted symbol is shown in Output.
Figure 7

Simulated timing diagram.

The test bed has been implemented using an educational FPGA board which is the Xilinx Spartan IIE XC2S200E speed grade-7. In addition, the setup includes a wireless local area network antenna of type CDM2502 working in the 2.4-2.5 GHz band. Using this test bed, we have been able to transmit and receive a digital signal successfully. Figures 8(a) and 8(c) show the transmitted and the corresponding measured received information signals, respectively, in the presence of three interferers and using the five channels encoder-decoder presented previously. The results show clearly that the three transmitted bits are received successfully. In addition, Figure 8(b) is the measured OV-CDMA coded transmitted signal of the desired user.
Figure 8

Measured signals: (a) binary input wave, (b) OV-CDMA coded signal, and (c) binary-decoded wave.

Using the test bed built in our labs, we have been able to measure the SIR and the bit error rate (BER) of our proposed system. An experiment has been conducted using a very high number of coded bits using our technique. Figure 9 shows the measured SIR and the simulated one using the derived equation in (17) versus the overlapping coefficient. We assume 20 active terminals. It is clear that there is a total agreement between the measured and the analytical results. On the other hand, using a transmission rate of 10 Mbits/s, Figure 10 presents measured BER versus the total number of active simultaneous users in the network. It is clear that our system guarantees a good performance in the presence of MAI.
Figure 9

System's SIR (in dB) versus the overlapping coefficient using real measurements and the analytical results obtained in (20).

Figure 10

Measured bit error rate.

7. Conclusion

In this paper, we have proposed a simple technique yet very efficient to implement a multirate/multiclass CDMA system based on a novel code overlapping procedure. A system model was presented and the SIR was derived. The block diagram of the transmitter and the receiver were presented and discussed. Moreover, an efficient FPGA-based transceiver implementation was shown. This implementation was efficient in terms of both speed and area. Using simple educational FPGA board of type Xilinx Spartan IIE (XC2S200E), the measurement results showed that the proposed system can achieve very good performance in the presence of MAI. Both simulation and measurements showed that it is possible to increase the transmission rate well beyond the nominal rate. On the other hand, simulation results reveal that our newly proposed OV-CDMA outperform the classical VPG-FFH-CDMA.



This paper was presented in part at the IEEE VTC 2004 and IEEE ISCAS 2006 conferences. This work was supported in part by the Lebanese CNRS under Grant CNRSL no. 4082.

Authors’ Affiliations

Department of Computer Engineering, Faculty of Engineering, University of Balamand


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© E. Inaty and R. Ayoubi. 2008

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