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Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad VOL. 6, NO. 4/APRIL 2014/J. OPT. COMMUN. NETW.


Hybrid Asymmetrically Clipped

OFDM-Based IM/DD Optical
Wireless System
Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad

AbstractIn this paper, we present a hybrid asymmetri- physical layer schemes used in a range of modern radio
cally clipped optical orthogonal frequency division multi-
frequency (RF) mobile wireless communication system
plexing (OFDM) system. This system uses a combination
of asymmetrically clipped optical OFDM (ACO-OFDM) standards such as WiFi, WiMax, and LTE, due to its ability
and pulse amplitude modulated discrete multitone to counter multipath fading and ISI using easy equaliza-
(PAM-DMT) techniques, which can be used in intensity tion techniques.
modulated direct detection (IM/DD) optical wireless
(OW) systems. In this hybrid scheme, ACO-OFDM and OFDM is also being considered as a candidate for indoor
PAM-DMT signals are transmitted together. Clipping noise optical wireless (OW) systems especially in intensity modu-
is estimated at the receiver and canceled to recover the lated direct detection (IM/DD) systems, and has gained sig-
PAM-DMT symbols. This scheme does not require any DC
nificant attention because of the multipath nature of the
bias for transmission, which makes the transmitter less
complex and very power efficient. With this system, we indoor OW channel [36]. Multipath in an indoor environ-
can increase the data rate of the ACO-OFDM system by al- ment causes overlapping of light signals and results in
most twice. In addition, no bandwidth penalty is incurred. signal distortion [7,8]. This severely degrades system per-
Extensive computer simulations show that the bit-error formance. In RF-based OFDM systems, the output signal
rate (BER) performance of ACO-OFDM in the additive
white Gaussian noise environment is not affected by any is bipolar and complex. This signal cannot be easily
kind of interference, but only due to half of the available transmitted in an IM/DD-based OW system since light
transmit power, we see a 3 dB degradation. However, the intensity cannot be negative and we cannot transmit a
BER performance of PAM-DMT shows some degradation complex signal using a single optical transmitter such as
at low signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) but is identical to the
an LED [9]. Therefore, the output OFDM signal has to
conventional scheme at higher SNR. We also see a slight
improvement in peak-to-average power ratio (PAPR) of be made real and positive to make it suitable for optical
the output combined signal. Therefore, advantages such transmission. Hermitian symmetric input data to the
as increased data rate, DC-bias elimination, no bandwidth, OFDM block generates a real output signal. However, to
and PAPR penalty make this scheme very attractive for OW make the signal positive, several OFDM schemes have
systems using IM/DD.
been proposed for IM/DD OW systems. Among them, one
Index TermsACO-OFDM; DC bias; OFDM; Optical is called DC-biased OFDM [10], wherein we use a DC bias
wireless; PAM-DMT; PAPR. to make the output signal positive. Other schemes involve
clipping the negative part of the output signal. Pulse am-
plitude modulated discrete multitone (PAM-DMT) [11] is
one of these clipping-based schemes where we modulate
the imaginary part of each subcarrier while the real part
is set to zero. The output bipolar signal is clipped, and clip-

R ecent advances in digital signal processing (DSP)

technology and the availability of high-speed signal
processors has enabled the wireless industry to use effi-
ping noise will fall on the real part of the same subcarrier.
Another clipping-based scheme known as asymmetrically
clipped optical OFDM (ACO-OFDM) uses only odd subcar-
cient signaling schemes that can combat multipath riers modulated by complex constellation symbols [12,13].
dispersion in an outdoor multipath wireless channel. This will result in clipping noise falling only on even
The addition of multiple copies of the same signal at differ- subcarriers. Therefore, in both clipping-based strategies,
ent times due to multipath causes frequency-selective fad- clipping noise is always orthogonal to the transmitted
ing and inter-symbol interference (ISI), which severely symbols, which will enable easy recovery of the desired
degrades system performance [1,2]. Orthogonal frequency data at the receiver.
division multiplexing (OFDM) is one of the popular
In ACO-OFDM, we only use half of the subcarriers,
which is spectrally a very inefficient strategy. To increase
Manuscript received November 18, 2013; revised February 8, 2014; ac- the data rate and improve spectral efficiency, we propose
cepted February 10, 2014; published March 20, 2014 (Doc. ID 201565). using a hybrid scheme that uses a combination of both
The authors are with the Department of Electrical Engineering,
Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pennsylvania 16802,
ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT. In [14], it was shown that
USA (e-mail: bar5254@psu.edu). we can regenerate clipping noise at the receiver, which
http://dx.doi.org/10.1364/JOCN.6.000387 can be used to cancel the clipping noise falling on even

1943-0620/14/040387-10$15.00/0 2014 Optical Society of America

388 J. OPT. COMMUN. NETW./VOL. 6, NO. 4/APRIL 2014 Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad

subcarriers. This will enable us to use even subcarriers for system performance results. Extensive computer simula-
data transfer, which will improve spectral efficiency. tions were carried out to compute the BER performance of
We propose using PAM-DMT to modulate the imaginary the whole system in the additive white Gaussian noise
part of each even subcarrier by symbols drawn from a real (AWGN) channel. We also computed the PAPR performance
one-dimensional (1D) constellation such as M-ary pulse of individual systems and the combined system and com-
amplitude modulation (M-PAM). Both signals have to be pared our results. We finally conclude with Section VI.
generated on two different paths and finally added to-
gether after clipping their negative parts. No DC-bias ad-
dition is required at the transmitter, which will make the II. CLIPPING-BASED OW IM/DD SYSTEMS
transmitter simple. However, since we will be transmitting
a combination of both ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT signal, In this section, we provide a review of two clipping-based
only half of the power will be available to the ACO-OFDM strategies that form an integral part of the proposed hybrid
signal. This will incur 3 dB signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) system. Specifically we will describe the ACO-OFDM and
degradation at the receiver and thus bit-error rate PAM-DMT systems.
(BER) performance deterioration. This combination of
ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT offers advantages such as zero
DC-bias addition, higher data rates, reduced transmitter A. ACO-OFDM
complexity, and no increase in peak-to-average power ratio
(PAPR) of the output signal. These features will definitely A simple block diagram of a baseband ACO-OFDM sys-
make this scheme very attractive for future OW systems. tem is shown in Fig. 1. In this OFDM-based system, data
In [15] a similar technique has been proposed, which are transmitted in the form of blocks of duration T. Each
uses a DC-bias OFDM on the second path of the transmit- block consists of M  N4 complex symbols drawn from a
ter and a two-dimensional (2D) constellation mapping. complex 2D constellation such as 4-, 16-, or 64-QAM that
As shown in [16], DC-bias addition is not a very power ef- will modulate only odd subcarriers in the first half of N
ficient strategy. Therefore, in our proposed scheme we try subcarriers. N is the total number of subcarriers available
to reduce transmitter complexity by using a 1D constella- and is equal to the size of the inverse fast Fourier transform
tion and improve power efficiency by eliminating DC bias. (IFFT). The conjugate of these symbols modulates the
This paper is organized as follows. Section II gives an over- odd subcarriers of the second half of N subcarriers to meet
view of both clipping-based systems, namely ACO-OFDM the Hermitian symmetry requirements. Therefore, the
and PAM-DMT, along with a description of system blocks. input data vector to the IFFT block will look like X 
It also presents a detailed system diagram of the proposed 0; X 0 ; 0; X 1 ; 0; ; X N21 ; 0; X N21 ; 0; ; X 0 , where X k 
hybrid system, hybrid asymmetrically clipped optical ak  ibk and ak ; bk are real and imaginary parts of the
(HACO)-OFDM, with a description of each block and a def- complex symbol, respectively. The first (DC) and N2nd
inition of generated signals. Section III provides detailed subcarriers are set to zero to obtain a real output signal.
derivation of the probability density function (PDF) of the The time-domain output signal is generated by taking
HACO-OFDM output signal. In Section V, we present the the IFFT of the input vector:

S/P (N-point)
Mapping Add
Input Clip
/ Zero Cyclic D/A
Bits P/S negative
Insertion Prefix Converter
S/P (CP)

w (t )
Extract (N-point)
symbols Remove
Output Cyclic A/D
Bits Prefix Converter
Extract (CP)
P/S symbols


Fig. 1. Block diagram of baseband ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT systems.

Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad VOL. 6, NO. 4/APRIL 2014/J. OPT. COMMUN. NETW. 389

1XN1 2 3
2 4 X
xn  X ej2Nn : (1) N21
N k0 k ymNs  bk sin 2 N s 5
N k0
A cyclic prefix (CP) is added to this discrete time output
2 3
signal. xn is bipolar and antisymmetric. We clip the  
k 5
negative part of this signal to generate a unipolar signal  b sin 2 s
N k0 k N
given by xn c :
  ym ; s  0; 1; 2; ; N 1: (5)
xn if xn 0
xn c  : (2)
0 if xn < 0 We can easily clip the negative part of ym without losing
any information. Therefore, after adding a CP to the IFFT
xn c is finally passed through a digital-to-analog (D/A) output, the negative half of the signal is clipped. The clip-
converter to generate a continuous time signal that modu- ping noise is found to be falling on the real part of each sub-
lates the intensity of an optical transmitter such as an LED carrier. Therefore, because of the orthogonality of clipping
[9]. The clipping noise generated by clipping the negative noise, transmitted symbols remain uncorrupted by the
half of the time-domain signal falls only on even subcar- noise and can be recovered easily at the receiver.
riers. Therefore, the transmitted symbols are not affected
The asymmetric clipping operation is the same as de-
by the clipping noise, which enables easy recovery of data
fined in Eq. (2). This clipped output yn c is passed through
symbols at the receiver.
a D/A converter to generate a continuous time signal that
At the receiver, an optical detector converts the intensity finally modulates the intensity of the optical modulator.
into an electrical signal x~ t. This signal gets corrupted by
At the receiver side, we perform the reverse operations
electronic noise generated by electronic components and
in a similar fashion to that of ACO-OFDM to extract
the ambient noise from the surrounding light sources. This
useful data. The only difference is that at the output of
noise wt is usually modeled as AWGN. The noise cor-
FFT block, we only extract the imaginary part of the first
rupted signal is then passed through an analog-to-digital
N2 subcarriers.
(A/D) converter to generate a discrete time signal x~ n :
The received signal at a specific subcarrier in the
x~ n  xn c  wn ; (3) absence of any external noise or disturbance is given by

where wn is the discrete time version of AWGN. The CP is X

N21 X
ym c ej2N m  yNm c ej2NNm
k k
removed and finally we perform FFT operation on the input Yk 
m0 m0
discrete time samples. The noise corrupted constellation
symbols are extracted from the FFT output and demapped X 
ym c ej2Nm  ym c ej2N m
k k

to generate output bits. 



B. PAM-DMT  ym c  ym c cos 2 m
The block diagram of the PAM-DMT system is similar to i ym c ym c sin 2 m
that of ACO-OFDM shown in Fig. 1. In this OFDM-based
scheme, N2 symbols drawn from a real mapping scheme X 

such as PAM are used to modulate the imaginary part of  jym j cos 2 m iym  sin 2 m : (6)
each subcarrier. However, the DC and N2nd subcarriers
are not modulated to fulfill the Hermitian symmetry re- From Eq. (6), we observe that clipping noise falls on the
quirements. Therefore, the data vector forming the input real part of each subcarrier and it actually represents the
to the IFFT block will be Y  0; Y 0 ; Y 1 ; Y 2 ; ; Y N21 ; 0; absolute value of the transmitted time-domain signal. This
Y N21 ; ; Y 1 ; Y 0 , where Y k  ibk and bk is the real- valuable information, as shown in [14], can be used to
valued symbol drawn from a constellation such as improve the overall SNR by a few decibels with some
M-PAM. The real part of each subcarrier is set to zero. additional signal processing.
The time-domain real output signal ym is generated by
taking the IFFT of the input vector:
C. Hybrid ACO-OFDM
1 N1 k
ym  Y ej2Nm m  0; 1; 2; ; N 1
N k0 k
We propose a hybrid asymmetrically clipped scheme that
2 X k is a combination of ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT. A simple
 bk sin 2 m : (4) block diagram of the baseband HACO-OFDM system is
N k0 N
shown in Fig. 2. In this scheme, we generate two separate
ym is an antisymmetric signal and has the same blocks of asymmetrically clipped OFDM signal of duration
information in both the positive and negative parts. T and then combine them together to transmit as a single
Mathematically, block. To generate the first block, input data bits are
390 J. OPT. COMMUN. NETW./VOL. 6, NO. 4/APRIL 2014 Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad

mapped using a 2D mapping scheme such as M-QAM to where iACO;m represents noise added to the bipolar
obtain M  N4 input symbols that modulate odd subcar- ACO-OFDM signal to get a clipped version and iPAM;m rep-
riers in the OFDM block. The remaining subcarriers are set resents noise added to the bipolar PAM-DMT signal to gen-
to zeros. The input vector to the IFFT block takes the form erate a clipped signal. Notice that the clipping interference
XACO  0; X 0 ; 0; X 1 ; 0; ; X N21 ; 0; X N21 ; 0; ; X 0 . The created on both paths will interfere only with even subcar-
time-domain output signal xACO;m is asymmetrically riers. Odd subcarriers will remain undisturbed. Therefore,
clipped xACO;m c , which will generate clipping noise/ we should expect to have the same performance of the
interference I ACO on even subcarriers. ACO-OFDM block in this hybrid scheme as in the conven-
A second stream of input data bits is mapped using a 1D tional system if the same average transmit power is allo-
constellation such as M-PAM to generate M 1 PAM sym- cated to ACO-OFDM subcarriers. On the other hand, due to
bols that will modulate the imaginary part of each even the addition of clipping interference to the imaginary part
subcarrier. Therefore, the input vector to the IFFT block of each even subcarrier, the performance of PAM-DMT will
will be YPAM  0; 0; Y 0 ; 0; Y 1 ; 0; ; Y N22 ; 0; 0; 0; Y N22 ; deteriorate.
0; ; Y 0 ; 0. This is in contrast to the conventional PAM- At the receiver, the transmitted signal is detected by a
DMT scheme, where the imaginary part of all subcarriers photodetector, which converts it into an electrical signal
is modulated. The output time-domain signal yPAM;m ob- rt. Noise due to electrical components and ambient noise
tained after taking the IFFT of input symbols is asymmet- from surroundings, which is modeled here as AWGN, gets
rically clipped yPAM;m c , which will create noise/ added to this signal [17]. This noise corrupted signal is
interference IPAM on the real part of each even subcarrier. passed through an A/D converter, which will give us a dis-
After clipping, it is added to the first block. A CP is added crete time signal given by rm :
to the resulting combined clipped signal zm . After passing
through a D/A converter, this combined signal finally mod- rm  zm  wm ; (8)
ulates the intensity of an optical transmitter such as an
LED or laser: where wm represents the discrete time version of AWGN.
We assume a perfect timing and frequency-domain equali-
zm  xACO;m c  yPAM;m c zation at the receiver. After removing the CP, the signal is
fed to the fast Fourier transform (FFT) block, which per-
 xACO;m  yPAM;m  iACO;m  iPAM;m ; (7) forms FFT operation to generate the frequency-domain

X [i ] Mapping IFFT Clip
S/P / Zero (N-point) P/S negative
Conj() To optical
Cyclic D/A
Prefix Converter
Y [i ] Mapping IFFT Clip
S/P / Zero (N-point) P/S negative
Constellation Conj()

ACO- Detect Remove Photodetector
symbols S/P
OFDM (N-point) Prefix Converter
symbols (CP)

Subtract w (t )
noise AWGN

FFT Asymmetric IFFT
(N-point) clipping (N-point)

Clipping noise generation

Fig. 2. Block diagram of baseband HACO-OFDM systems.

Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad VOL. 6, NO. 4/APRIL 2014/J. OPT. COMMUN. NETW. 391

symbols Rk  Zk  W k , where k is the subcarrier index. 1 a 1
f xACO a  p exp ua  a; (11)
Zk  Zeven;k  Zodd;k  IACO;k  IPAM;k represents the sub- 2 a 2 2
2 a 2
carriers values at index k, and W k  W even;k  W odd;k gives
the frequency-domain representation of noise samples on and
even and odd subcarriers, respectively.
It is observed that clipping operation causes the power of 1 b 1
f yPAM b  q exp 2
ub  b; (12)
the M-QAM symbols in odd subcarriers to be reduced by 2 b 2 2 b
half [14,16]. Therefore, to correctly estimate the received
symbols, odd subcarriers are simply multiplied by 2 to scale where 2a and 2b are the variances of the unclipped ACO-
them properly for recovery and detection. In this hybrid OFDM and PAM-DMT signals given by 2a  Efx2ACO mg
scheme, our first objective at the receiver is to correctly and 2b  Efy2PAM mg. From zm  xACO;m c  yPAM;m c
estimate ACO-OFDM symbols transmitted on odd subcar- and [20], the PDF of the combined signal can be obtained
riers. This will help us regenerate an estimate of clipping through convolution of two PDFs. Therefore, the PDF of the
noise I ACO;k falling on even subcarriers. Once we have esti- unipolar time-domain intensity modulating signal is
mated clipping noise in the frequency domain, we will sub-
tract it from the received frequency-domain symbols on
f zHACO z  f xACO a f yPAM b  f x lf y z ldl
even subcarriers, and finally we will extract the imaginary
part to get an estimate of PAM symbols: Z  2 
1 l 1
 p exp ul  l
2 2a 2 2a 2
Zeven;k  Zeven;k  IACO;k  IPAM;k  W even;k  I ACO;k : (9)    
1 z l2 1
q exp uz l  z l dl
2 2b 2 2b 2
The estimate of the PAM symbol is obtained by the fol-
lowing operation: Z   2  
1 l z l2
 exp exp dl
2 a b 0 2 2a 2 2b
Y PAM  imagY even;k  Z    
0.5 l2
 imagY even;k  IACO;k  W even;k IACO;k : (10)  p exp z l dl
2 2a 0 2 2a
Finally these estimated symbols will be used to detect 0.5 z l2
 q exp l dl
the transmitted bits using a PAM constellation demapper.
2 2b 0 2 2b
Remember that the interference generated by clipping
PAM-DMT signal will only fall on the real part of even sub-
 0.25 lz ldl: (13)
carriers. Therefore, the final estimated PAM symbols will 0
be free from self-interference.
In the HACO-OFDM scheme, we do not need any DC After some manipulation and using the identity [21]
bias at the transmitter as shown in Fig. 2. Zero DC bias
Z  2 
also eliminates the DC canceler block from the receiver. u x p
However, on the receiver side, we need additional process- exp x  2 exp 2 
0 4
ing for clipping noise generation and cancellation. This in-      
p p p u
creases receiver complexity compared to the conventional Q 2 Q 2  p ;
ACO-OFDM scheme. Additional signal processing blocks
required include one IFFT and FFT block, one asymmetric (14)
clipper, and one block to compute the difference between
estimated and received symbols. Eq. (13) can be simplified as
expz2 2 2b  p z z p
f zHACO z  exp 4 Q 2 2
z p 
Q 2 2  p
The PDF of the combined signal can be derived using the b 2
relationship given in Eq. (7). The output time-domain sig-   2  2 
0.5 1 z 1 z
nal from each IFFT block is obtained by the addition of a  p exp  exp uz
2 a 2 2a b 2 2b
large number of subcarriers modulated by uniformly dis-
tributed random symbols drawn from M-QAM or M-PAM  0.25z; (15)
constellations. Therefore as given in [18], the central limit
theorem can be applied, and the real output signal samples where we have used   2a 2b 2 2a  2b  and
of ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT follow a Gaussian distribu-  z 2b .
tion with zero mean. However, after clipping, the PDF of Figures 3 and 4 show the simulated and theoretical
clipped output signal samples will become a clipped Gaus- PDF and cumulative distribution function (CDF) of the
sian distribution [19] given by HACO-OFDM signal, respectively. The graph shows that
392 J. OPT. COMMUN. NETW./VOL. 6, NO. 4/APRIL 2014 Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad

simulation systems, the PAPR is computed per block. The PAPR of the
theory discrete time output HACO-OFDM signal in decibels is
defined as
max0mN1 zm c 2
PAPRHACO dB  10 log10 : (16)
0.4 Efzm c 2 g
(z) Z(t)

The PAPR performance of a system is usually presented in


terms of the complimentary cumulative distribution func-
0.2 tion (CCDF). The CCDF of the PAPR is the probability that
the PAPR exceeds a certain value z:
CCDF  1 PPAPRHACO dB z: (17)
0 2 4 6 8 10 For a given system, a plot of CCDF of the PAPR on the y
Z axis and threshold on the x axis will be obtained. The graph
corresponding to a system that shows a low CCDF value for
Fig. 3. Comparison of theoretical and simulated PDF of HACO- a given threshold shows better performance.

simulated and theoretical values are almost overlapping
each other. Figure 3 also shows that the system is transmit- In this section, we present simulation results that show
ting low optical power most of the time, which makes this the performance of the proposed HACO-OFDM scheme
technique a very power efficient scheme. and a comparison with conventional ACO-OFDM and
PAM-DMT schemes. In order to compute the performance
of the proposed system in the AWGN channel, we per-
IV. PAPR OF HACO-OFDM formed extensive computer simulations and found the
BER of individual blocks and the overall system. CCDF
OFDM is a multicarrier signal with inherently high curves to evaluate the PAPR performance of the combined
PAPR due to the addition of a large number of subcarriers. signal were also computed, and a comparison was devel-
A high PAPR signal requires a large dynamic range A/D oped. In computing the PAPR of the output combined sig-
converter and D/A converter and linear power amplifiers nal, we used an oversampling rate of 4 to get accurate
(PAs) at the front end. Linear PAs are difficult to build results. We used an IFFT size of N  512 with M  N4.
and are very expensive. In order to reduce the cost of For ACO-OFDM, we generated 128 symbols from M-QAM
the overall system, it is desirable to use low-cost nonlinear constellations such as 4-, 16-, 64-, and 256-QAM, which
PAs with wider linear regions. Therefore, the PAPR of the formed the input to the first IFFT block. Another 127 real
output signal plays a vital role in determining the cost of symbols were generated from M-PAM constellations that
the overall system and is considered as an important sys- formed the input to the IFFT block in the second branch
tem performance metric. The PAPR is the ratio of peak sig- of hybrid systems. The difference between transmitted
nal power to average signal power [18]. For OFDM-based and received bits was calculated and BER curves were
obtained for a given Ebelec N o .

A. Comparison With Conventional ACO-OFDM and


To compare the performance of ACO-OFDM and PAM-
Prob[Z < z]

DMT blocks in hybrid schemes with their conventional
0.6 counterparts, we compute the BER in terms of the electri-
cal bit energy to noise power ratio Ebelec N o .
0.4 Figure 5 shows the BER performance of the ACO-OFDM
branch for various types of M-QAM constellation such as 4-,
0.2 16-, 64-, and 256-QAM. In this case, an equal proportion of
power was allocated to both PAM-DMT and ACO-OFDM.
From the figure, we notice that the performance of the
0 2 4 6 8 10 ACO-OFDM block is degraded by almost 3 dB compared
Z to the conventional systems. This is due to the fact that,
in our proposed hybrid system, only half of the power is al-
Fig. 4. Comparison of theoretical and simulated CDF of located to ACO-OFDM symbols that modulate odd subcar-
HACO-OFDM. riers compared to the conventional scheme. The remaining
Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad VOL. 6, NO. 4/APRIL 2014/J. OPT. COMMUN. NETW. 393

10 4-, 8-, 16-, and 32-PAM. From the figure, we observe that
ACO 16QAM BER performance degrades by a few decibels at lower
Ebelec N o , but it becomes identical to the conventional
HACO 4QAM PAM-DMT scheme at higher Ebelec N o. The performance
deterioration at lower Ebelec N o is due to the estimation
HACO 256QAM noise incurred during ACO-OFDM symbol detection.
However, at higher Ebelec N o, the estimation noise is sig-

nificantly reduced and thus we get an identical perfor-
mance. We also observe that transmit power is halved
for PAM-DMT symbols in this scheme, but we do not see
a 3 dB performance penalty. This is due to the difference
in the number of subcarriers modulated by PAM symbols.
In conventional PAM-DMT, the imaginary part of all sub-
4 carriers except the DC and N2nd is modulated, but in our
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 case, only the imaginary part of even subcarriers is modu-
Eb(elec)/No (dB) lated. This reduces the data rate by two times. Therefore,
we have twice the power to transmit all even subcarriers as
compared to the conventional scheme. On the other hand,
Fig. 5. BER performance of ACO-OFDM and HACO-OFDM for
4-, 16-, 64-, and 256-QAM systems. the overall system power is divided equally in the HACO
system between ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT, which will re-
duce the transmit power for even subcarriers back to the
half of power is used by PAM-DMT symbols. Therefore, we
original value. Thus, we do not see any BER performance
expect a 3 dB BER performance loss due to reduction in the
deterioration for PAM-DMT due to reduced total average
available average transmitted power. However, we also no-
transmit power.
tice that no performance degradation is caused by any kind
of clipping noise due to clipping of the signal in either the However, if we only modulate half of the available sub-
first data branch or the second. This proves that carriers in the conventional PAM-DMT system and com-
ACO-OFDM symbols modulating odd subcarriers remain pare its BER performance with the PAM-DMT block in
undisturbed by any kind of clipping noise. Therefore, in the HACO-OFDM system, we will definitely see a 3 dB per-
reality, the performance of the ACO-OFDM branch in formance degradation using the same data rate. This can
the hybrid system is identical to the conventional scheme, be seen in Fig. 7, where we have plotted the BER of the
but due to half of the average transmitted power allocated conventional PAM-DMT system with only half the subcar-
to ACO-OFDM, we see 3 dB degradation. Hence, we can riers modulated and the BER of the PAM-DMT block in the
easily transmit symbols from a 2D constellation on odd HACO-OFDM system. We clearly see a 3 dB difference in
subcarriers without suffering from any kind of clipping performance.
noise interference. Figure 8 shows CCDF curves for the PAPR of ACO-
Figure 6 shows the BER performance of the PAM-DMT OFDM, PAM-DMT, and the HACO-OFDM scheme. From
block, which uses even subcarriers for data transmission. the figure, it is clear that addition of signals from two indi-
Performance curves were obtained with the AWGN chan- vidual schemes does not cause a PAPR penalty. In fact, the
nel and for various types of M-PAM constellations such as CCDF curves show that the PAPR performance of the
0 10

1 10


2 10

32PAMDMT M=(N/4)
10 10
0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35 0 5 10 15 20 25 30 35
Eb(elec)/No (dB) Eb(elec)/No (dB)

Fig. 6. BER performance of conventional PAM-DMT and HACO- Fig. 7. BER performance of conventional PAM-DMT with half
PAM-DMT for 4-, 8-, 16-, and 32-PAM systems. subcarriers and PAM-DMT block in HACO-OFDM.
394 J. OPT. COMMUN. NETW./VOL. 6, NO. 4/APRIL 2014 Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad
10 40

<E /N >BER (dB)



4 16HACO
6 8 10 12 14 16 18 20 5
0.1 0.2 0.3 0.4 0.5 0.6 0.7 0.8 0.9
PAPRo (dB)
Proportion of Optical power on ACOOFDM subcarriers

Fig. 8. CCDF curves of PAPR for ACO-OFDM, PAM-DMT, Fig. 10. Comparison of hEbopt N o iBER for HACO-OFDM for vari-
and HACO-OFDM schemes for (4-QAM, 4-PAM) and (16-QAM, ous proportions of optical power and for different M-QAM constel-
16-PAM). lations used by ACO-OFDM.

hybrid scheme is slightly better than that of either of the B. Comparison With ADO-OFDM
two subsystems. This reduction in PAPR can be attributed
to the fact that the total average power of the HACO sys- In order to make a fair comparison between the perfor-
tem slightly increases due to the addition of ACO-OFDM mance of our hybrid scheme and that of ADO-OFDM [15],
and PAM-DMT signals. This can be seen in Fig. 9, where we will compute the BER performance in terms of normal-
we see the probability of the HACO signal having value ized optical bit energy to noise power Ebopt N o, where the
equal to zero is 0.25 compared to 0.5 of its constituent sub- total average optical power is set to unity, i.e., Efzm g  1.
systems. Also, we observe there is a slight increase in the The BER performance of the HACO system will vary
probability of the HACO signal for lower values, which depending upon the proportion of total optical power allo-
indicates an increase in the average optical power of the cated to ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT blocks. Therefore, we
transmitted signal. This increase in the average power will first determine the optimum power allocation based on
results in some PAPR improvement seen in Fig. 8. the lowest required hEbopt N o iBER , which is defined as
Therefore, these results show that our hybrid scheme the value of normalized Ebopt N o required to achieve
can increase the data rate of the conventional ACO-OFDM BER  103 .
system by two times without any loss of PAPR perfor- Both ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT branches in HACO
mance. The only penalty to be paid is additional processing systems can use variable data rates; therefore, we will
required at the receiver.

HACO simulation
ACOOFDM simulation


<E /N >





1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8
Bit rate/Normalized bandwidth

1 0 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 Fig. 11. Comparison of hEbopt N o iBER versus bit rate/normalized

Z bandwidth for HACO-OFDM and ADO-OFDM for various
proportions of optical power and for different constellations. The
Fig. 9. PDF comparison of HACO-OFDM and ACO-OFDM minimum value of hEbopt N o iBER is shown for each constellation
systems. combination.
Bilal Ranjha and Mohsen Kavehrad VOL. 6, NO. 4/APRIL 2014/J. OPT. COMMUN. NETW. 395

Rb BWNorm Parameters
2 ACO 4-QAM, DCO 4-QAM bias  5.5, ACO power  0.2 (ADO-OFDM);
ACO 4-QAM, PAM 4-PAM, ACO power  0.4 (HACO-OFDM)
3 ACO 16-QAM, DCO 4-QAM bias  5.1, ACO power  0.4 (ADO-OFDM);
ACO 16-QAM, PAM 4-PAM, ACO power  0.6 (HACO-OFDM)
4 ACO 64-QAM, DCO 4-QAM bias  4.3, ACO power  0.6 (ADO-OFDM);
ACO 64-QAM, PAM 4-PAM, ACO power  0.8 (HACO-OFDM)
5 ACO 256-QAM, DCO 4-QAM bias  3.9, ACO power  0.7 (ADO-OFDM);
ACO 64-QAM, PAM 16-PAM, ACO power  0.4 (HACO-OFDM)
6 ACO 256-QAM, DCO 16-QAM bias  6.46, ACO power  0.5 (ADO-OFDM);
ACO 256-QAM, PAM 16-PAM, ACO power  0.6 (HACO-OFDM)

develop a performance comparison in terms of average HACO-OFDM are given in Table I, where we have denoted
bit rate to normalized bandwidth. The average bit rate the average bit rate/normalized bandwidth by Rb BWNorm.
for HACO-OFDM systems is given by log2 M ACO  From Figs. 10 and 11, we see that HACO-OFDM per-
log2 M PAM 2, where M ACO and M PAM are the constellation forms much better than ADO-OFDM for a range of average
sizes of the M-QAM and M-PAM mapping schemes. We will bit rate/normalized bandwidth values. HACO-OFDM also
generate a graph that shows variations of hEbopt N o iBER does not require any DC bias at the transmitter as required
with average bit rate/normalized bandwidth. Following by ADO-OFDM. This makes the HACO-OFDM transmitter
[15], we define system bandwidth as the position of the first simpler than ADO-OFDM and more power efficient.
spectral null. In our analysis, we will also use normalized
bandwidth, which is defined as system bandwidth normal-
ized relative to the bandwidth of onoff keying (OOK) of the VI. CONCLUSION
same data rate. Both ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT systems
are OFDM-based systems that have their first spectral
nulls at normalized frequency of 1  2N, where N is In this paper, we have presented a hybrid ACO-OFDM
the size of the IFFT/FFT used. For the ACO-OFDM system scheme that uses a combination of both ACO-OFDM and
using 16-QAM and PAM-DMT using 16-PAM, the average PAM-DMT techniques. Our system increases the data rate
bit rate per normalized bandwidth is given by log2 M ACO  of the conventional ACO-OFDM system by two times
log2 M PAM 21  2N. without any penalty in the BER performance of the conven-
tional scheme. The 3 dB penalty observed for the ACO-
Figure 10 shows the variation of hEbopt N o iBER when OFDM block was only due to half of the available transmit
the optical power allocated to the ACO-OFDM block is var- power compared with the conventional system. No other
ied from 0.1 to 0.9. In this case we have chosen a fixed factor deteriorates ACO-OFDM performance. Our system
4-PAM constellation mapping for PAM-DMT while using does not require any DC bias at the transmitter, which
4-, 16-, 64-, and 256-QAM constellations for ACO-OFDM. makes it power efficient and relatively simple. Zero DC
The graph shows that when ACO-OFDM uses 4-QAM with bias at the transmitter also eliminates the use of a DC can-
the 4-PAM constellation used by PAM-DMT, minimum val- celer at the receiver. On the other hand, noise cancellation
ues of hEbopt N o iBER can be achieved when the proportion at the receiver does require extra processing, which makes
of optical power allocated to ACO-OFDM is 0.4. the receiver more complex. Our computer simulations also
Figure 11 shows hEbopt N o iBER versus the average bit show that the PAPR of the hybrid signal is slightly less
rate/normalized bandwidth for ADO-OFDM and HACO- than individual constituent systems of the hybrid scheme.
OFDM systems. The plots are obtained for the lowest val- This makes our scheme ever more power efficient com-
ues of hEbopt N o iBER for a given set of mapping schemes pared to other techniques. No additional bandwidth is re-
and distribution of optical power on both subsystems of quired as the unused subcarriers are used for PAM-DMT
HACO-OFDM and ADO-OFDM. In each case, the average modulation, which were previously left unused. Therefore,
optical power was set to unity with varying proportion of our proposed system provides a very power efficient hybrid
optical power on ACO-OFDM and PAM-DMT. From the OFDM modulation technique that does not require any DC
plots we see that for an average bit rate/normalized band- bias, and it can be used in IM/DD OW systems.
width of 2, 3, 4, and 6, HACO-OFDM performs much better
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Global Telecommunications Conf. (GLOBECOM), 1994, vol. 2, received his M.S. degree in electrical engineering from Columbia
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digital communication systems, OFDM based wireless communi-
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A. Ayala, Adaptive OFDM system for communications over University (Brooklyn Polytechnic), Brooklyn, New York, in
the indoor wireless optical channel, IEE Proc. Optoelectron., November 1977, in electrical engineering. Between 1978 and
vol. 153, no. 4, pp. 139144, 2006. 1989, he worked on telecommunications problems for Fairchild In-
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PAM-DMT for intensity-modulated and direct-detection In 1989, he joined the University of Ottawa EE Department, as a
optical communication systems, IEEE Photon. Technol. Lett., full professor. Since January 1997, he has been with the Pennsyl-
vol. 21, no. 23, pp. 17491751, 2009. vania State University EE Department as the W. L. Weiss Chair
Professor and the founding Director of the Center for Information
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clipped optical OFDM and DC-biased optical OFDM in IEEE for his contributions to wireless communications and optical
AWGN, IEEE Commun. Lett., vol. 12, no. 5, pp. 343345, networking. He received three Bell Labs awards for his contribu-
2008. tions to wireless communications, the 1990 TRIO feedback award
[13] J. Armstrong, B. Schmidt, D. Kalra, H. Suraweera, and A. for a patent on an optical interconnect, the 2001 IEEE VTS Neal
Lowery, Performance of asymmetrically clipped optical Shepherd best paper award, three IEEE Lasers and Electro-Optics
Society best paper awards between 1991 and 1995, and a Canada
OFDM in AWGN for an intensity modulated direct detection
NSERC Ph.D.-thesis award in 1995, with his graduate students,
system, in IEEE Global Telecommunications Conf.
for contributions to wireless systems and optical networks. He
(GLOBECOM), 2006, pp. 15. has more than 300 published papers, several book chapters, books,
[14] L. Chen, B. Krongold, and J. Evans, Diversity combining for and patents in these areas. His current research interests are in
asymmetrically clipped optical OFDM in IM/DD channels, in wireless communications and optical networks. He is a former
IEEE Global Telecommunications Conf. (GLOBECOM), 2009, Technical Editor for the IEEE Transactions on Communications,
pp. 16. IEEE Communications Magazine, and the IEEE Magazine of
Lightwave Telecommunications Systems. Presently, he is on the
[15] S. D. Dissanayake and J. Armstrong, Comparison of ACO-
Editorial Board of the International Journal of Wireless Informa-
OFDM, DCO-OFDM and ADO-OFDM in IM/DD systems, tion Networks. He served as the General Chair of leading IEEE
J. Lightwave Technol., vol. 31, no. 7, pp. 10631072, 2013. conferences and workshops. He has chaired and organized and
[16] J. Armstrong and A. Lowery, Power efficient optical OFDM, been on the advisory committee for several international conferen-
Electron. Lett., vol. 42, no. 6, pp. 370372, 2006. ces and workshops.