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Digital fountain codes have emerged as a low-complexity alternative to Reed-Solomon codes for erasure correction. The applications of these codes are relevant especially in the field of wireless video, where low encoding and decoding complexity is crucial. In this paper, we introduce a new class of digital fountain codes based on a sliding-window approach applied to Raptor codes. These codes have several properties useful for video applications, and provide better performance than classical digital fountains. Then, we propose an application of sliding-window Raptor codes to wireless video broadcasting using scalable video coding. The rates of the base and enhancement layers, as well as the number of coded packets generated for each layer, are optimized so as to yield the best possible expected quality at the receiver side, and providing unequal loss protection to the different layers according to their importance. The proposed system has been validated in a UMTS broadcast scenario, showing that it improves the end-to-end quality, and is robust towards fluctuations in the packet loss rate.
Date of Publication: June 2010