Robust decoding for convolutionally coded systems impaired by memoryless impulsive noise

Der Feng Tseng, Yunghsiang S. Han, Wai Ho Mow, Po-Ning Chen, Jing Deng, A. J.Han Vinck

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

15 Scopus citations


It is well known that communication systems are susceptible to strong impulsive noises. To combat this, convolutional coding has long served as a cost-efficient tool against moderately frequent memoryless impulses with given statistics. Nevertheless, impulsive noise statistics are difficult to model accurately and are typically not time-invariant, making the system design challenging. In this paper, because of the lack of knowledge regarding the probability density function of impulsive noises, an efficient decoding scheme was devised for single-carrier narrowband communication systems; a design parameter was incorporated into recently introduced joint erasure marking and Viterbi decoding algorithm, dubbed the metric erasure Viterbi algorithm (MEVA). The proposed scheme involves incorporating a well-designed clipping operation into a Viterbi algorithm, in which the clipping threshold must be appropriately set. In contrast to previous publications that have resorted to extensive simulations, in the proposed scheme, the bit error probability performance associated with the clipping threshold was characterized by deriving its Chernoff bound. The results indicated that when the clipping threshold was judiciously selected, the MEVA can be on par with its optimal maximum-likelihood decoding counterpart under fairly general circumstances.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6648355
Pages (from-to)4640-4652
Number of pages13
JournalIEEE Transactions on Communications
Issue number11
StatePublished - 1 Nov 2013


  • Bernoulli-Gaussian channel
  • Impulsive noise
  • Metric erasure Viterbi Algorithm (MEVA)
  • Middleton Class-A model
  • Power line communications


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