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In this letter, we present a comparison between the bit error rate (BER) performance of a uniform circular array (UCA) and a uniform linear array (ULA) assuming quadrature phase-shift keying (QPSK) and maximal-ratio-combining (MRC) in a mobile radio communication environment. The results are based on analysis, assuming a flat Rayleigh fading channel with omni-directional antennnas and considering the azimuthal plane only. The analytical BER is derived as a function of the spatial fading correlation for both types of antenna arrays. Results show that for similar aperture sizes the UCA outperforms the ULA when considering all angles-of-arrival. However, there is considerable variability over central angle-of-arrival (AOA) for low-to-moderate angle spreads. For angles-of-arrival concentrated near the broadside of the linear array, the ULA typically performs as well as or better than the UCA. A truncated Gaussian AOA (AOA) distribution is assumed to model spatial correlation and the numerical results focus on four element arrays.
Date of Publication: May 2004