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Improving a Power Line Communications Standard with LDPC Codes

Abstract

We investigate a power line communications (PLC) scheme that could be used to enhance the HomePlug 1.0 standard, specifically its ROBO mode which provides modest throughput for the worst case PLC channel. The scheme is based on using a low-density parity-check (LDPC) code, in lieu of the concatenated Reed-Solomon and convolutional codes in ROBO mode. The PLC channel is modeled with multipath fading and Middleton's class A noise. Clipping is introduced to mitigate the effect of impulsive noise. A simple and effective method is devised to estimate the variance of the clipped noise for LDPC decoding. Simulation results show that the proposed scheme outperforms the HomePlug 1.0 ROBO mode and has lower computational complexity. The proposed scheme also dispenses with the repetition of information bits in ROBO mode to gain time diversity, resulting in 4-fold increase in physical layer throughput.

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Correspondence to Christine Hsu.

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Open Access This article is distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 2.0 International License (https://doi.org/creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.

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Keywords

  • Information Technology
  • Computational Complexity
  • Time Diversity
  • Quantum Information
  • Physical Layer