Performance of a space-time coded multicarrier CDMA system in frequency-selective Rayleigh channel.
The increasing demand for wireless services requires fast and robust broadband wireless communication for efficient utilisation of the scarce electromagnetic spectrum. One of the promising techniques for future wireless communication is the deployment of multi-input multi-output (MIMO) antenna system with orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM) coupled with multiple-access techniques. The combination of these techniques guarantees a much more reliable and robust transmission over the hostile wireless channel. This thesis investigates the performance of a multi-antenna space-time coded (STC) multi-carrier code-division multiple-access (MC-CDMA) system in a frequency-selective channel using Gold codes as spreading sequences. Spreading codes are known to be central to the performance of spread spectrum systems, STC MC-CDMA systems inclusive. Initial phase of this research work investigates multiple-access performance of spreading codes for the communication system. The performance of different sets of Gold codes for increasing number of interfering users for up to a thousand users and eight different code lengths, ranging from 31 to 4095-chip Gold codes, were considered. Simulation results show that odd-degree Gold codes give better bit-error-rate performance than even-degree Gold codes. Whereas the odd-degree codes exhibited relatively marginal loss in performance when the system was loaded, their even-degree counterparts degraded rapidly in performance, resulting in early emergence of an error floor, culminating in premature system saturation. Furthermore in this thesis, software simulations were carried to investigate the performance of a direct-sequence (DS) CDMA system in a flat-fading Rayleigh channel, and a multi-carrier (MC) CDMA system in a frequency-selective channel using different sets of Gold. The results showed that in a flat-fading channel, the Gold codes provide a constant coding gain close to that obtainable in a Gaussian channel. The results also showed that the impact of longer spreading codes was more pronounced for the MC-CDMA system in a frequency-selective channel as indicated by significant lowering of error floors. Also, frequency diversity associated with the use of longer codes coupled with multi-carrier modulation makes the MC-CDMA system resilient to multi-path effects. Further still, this thesis investigated the performance of a space-time block-coded (STBC) CDMA system in a flat-fading channel. Results showed that at low signal-to-noise ratio, the coding gain provided by the codes surpasses the diversity advantage provided by the use of the multiple antennas. The results also showed that coding gain between no-diversity link and its Gold-coded counterpart is the same as that between the transmit-diversity link and its Gold–coded counterpart. The independence of the diversity advantage provided by multiple transmit antennas and the coding gain obtainable from the use of the spreading sequences enables the prediction of the performance of composite space-time block-coded CDMA systems. Performance of a STBC OFDM system as well as a STBC MC-CDMA system in frequency-selective channel was also investigated. Results showed that the combination of diversity gain from the use of multiple antennas, coupled with coding gain provided by the Gold codes of the CDMA system, plus the diversity gain resulting from frequency diversity of multi-carrier transmission and the spectrum-spreading by the CDMA makes the composite STBC MC-CDMA system resilient to channel fading. This fact is particularly the case for long codes. For example, with reference to the OFDM transmission, the results showed that a 511-chip Gold-coded STC MC-CDMA system provided a factor of about 3,786 reduction in error floor.