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Channel Estimation for Spatial Modulation

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Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4362-4372
Number of pages11
JournalIEEE Transactions on Communications
Issue number12
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2014


In this paper, a novel channel estimation (CE) method is proposed for spatial modulation (SM), a unique single-stream multiple-input-multiple-output transmission technique. In SM, there is only one transmit antenna being active at any time instance. While this property completely avoids inter-channel interference, it results in a challenge to estimate the channel information. In conventional CE (CCE) methods for SM, all transmit antennas have to be sequentially activated for sending pilots. Therefore, the time consumed in CE is proportional to the number of transmit antennas, which significantly compromises the throughput. By exploiting channel correlation, the proposed method, named transmission cross CE (TCCE), has the following characteristics: i) the entire channel is estimated by sending pilots through one transmit antenna; ii) it requires no overhead or feedback; and iii) it achieves a low computational complexity at the receiver. In addition, we propose an analytical framework to compute the distribution of the CE errors over time-varying fading channels. The corresponding average bit error probability (ABEP) bound of SM is also derived for the proposed method. Results show that the proposed ABEP bound matches with the simulations very well. When compared with CCE, the new method obtains a signal-to-noise ratio gain of up to 7.5 dB for medium and high correlations between the transmit antennas. Moreover, an adaptive CE technique can be readily implemented for SM via switching between CCE and TCCE.

    Research areas

  • Spatial modulation, MIMO, channel estimation, channel correlation, time-varying channel, PERFORMANCE, DESIGN, MODEL

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