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In this letter, we address the problem of pilot design for carrier frequency offset (CFO) and data detection in digital burst transmission systems. We consider a quasistatic flat-fading channel. We find that placing half of the pilot symbols at the beginning of the burst and the other half at the end of the burst is optimal for both CFO estimation and data detection. Our findings are based on the Cramer-Rao bound and on empirical evaluations of the bit error rate for different pilot designs. The equal-preamble-postamble pilot design is shown to provide a significant gain in performance over the conventional preamble-only pilot design.