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An Opportunistic Error Correction Layer for OFDM Systems


We propose a novel cross layer scheme to reduce the power consumption of ADCs in OFDM systems. The ADCs in a receiver can consume up to 50% of the total baseband energy. Our scheme is based on resolution-adaptive ADCs and Fountain codes. In a wireless frequency-selective channel some subcarriers have good channel conditions and others are attenuated. The key part of the proposed system is that the dynamic range of ADCs can be reduced by discarding subcarriers that are attenuated by the channel. Correspondingly, the power consumption in ADCs can be decreased. In our approach, each subcarrier carries a Fountain-encoded packet. To protect Fountain-encoded packets against bit errors, an LDPC code has been used. The receiver only decodes subcarriers (i.e., Fountain-encoded packets) with the highest SNR. Others are discarded. For that reason a LDPC code with a relatively high code rate can be used. The new error correction layer does not require perfect channel knowledge, so it can be used in a realistic system where the channel is estimated. With our approach, more than 70% of the energy consumption in the ADCs can be saved compared with the conventional IEEE 802.11a WLAN system under the same channel conditions and throughput. In addition, it requires 7.5 dB less SNR than the 802.11a system. To reduce the overhead of Fountain codes, we apply message passing and Gaussian elimination in the decoder. In this way, the overhead is 3% for a small block size (i.e., 500 packets). Using both methods results in an efficient system with low delay.

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Correspondence to Xiaoying Shao.

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Shao, X., Schiphorst, R. & Slump, C.H. An Opportunistic Error Correction Layer for OFDM Systems. J Wireless Com Network 2009, 750735 (2009).

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  • Channel Condition
  • Code Rate
  • LDPC Code
  • Gaussian Elimination
  • OFDM System