Skip to Main Content
Pilot symbol assisted modulation (PSAM) is a standard approach for transceiver design for time-varying channels, with channel estimates obtained from pilot symbols being employed for coherent demodulation of the data symbols. In this paper, we show that PSAM schemes can be improved by adapting the coded modulation strategy at the sender to the quality of the channel measurement at the receiver, without requiring any channel feedback from the receiver. We consider performance in terms of achievable rate for binary signaling schemes. The transmitter employs interleaved codes, with data symbols coded according to their distance from the nearest pilot symbols. Symbols far away from pilot symbols encounter poorer channel measurements at the receiver and are therefore coded with lower rate codes, while symbols close to pilot symbols benefit from recent channel measurements and are coded with higher rate codes. The performance benefits from this approach are quantified in the context of binary signaling over time-varying Rayleigh fading channels described by a Gauss-Markov model. The spacing of the pilot symbols is optimized to maximize the mutual information between input and output in this setting. Causal and noncausal channel estimators of varying complexity and delay are considered. It is shown that, by appropriate optimization for the spacing between consecutive pilot symbols, the adaptive coding techniques proposed can improve achievable rate, without any feedback from the receiver to the sender. Moreover, channel estimation based on the two closest pilot symbols is generally close to optimal.
Date of Publication: June 2005