EEL 6509 - Wireless Communications
Dr. John M. Shea
Each student in EEL 6509 is required to work on a project in the area
of wireless communications. This project will count 20% of the
student's class grade, although extra credit will be awarded for
The most important thing about this project is that the student
does his or her own work. This does not mean that you have to
redevelop everything that you study. Nor do you need to recreate
simulation or analytical results. What it does mean is that all
project reports and proposals should be in each student's own words,
except for brief citations. All material used in the course of the
project should be referenced in the style used by IEEE Transactions
on Communications. IF YOU FIND MATERIAL ON THE WEB OR IN A
TEXTBOOK, DO NOT PRESENT IT AS IF IT IS YOUR OWN WORDS OR YOUR OWN
WORK -- I WILL FIND YOU OUT AND GIVE YOU A ZERO. You may include
material from other sources where necessary, provided it is clearly
that the material is another author's work and a proper citation is
given. If you decide to do a simulation, you can use programs that
you find on the web of in a book as long as you clearly indicate
where you got them from and that they are not your own work.
I have simplified this project in the hope that each student will
study something new about wireless communications and will gain
some experience reading the communications literature. I
recommend that the student have at least some small simulation
component to their work, but that is not required.
Students are expected to select the topic for their project, but some
ideas are given below. Students must submit proposals for review by
the professor to ensure that the project is appropriate in terms of
topic and difficulty. Students should work individually unless the
project involves some significant simulation, mathematics, or
Students should submit a short (i.e., two pages maximum length
) proposal for the project. For group projects, only one proposal
per group is expected. The proposal should consist of:
- Cover page (not counted against page total)- include title
of project, name of individual or team members, course number,
and date of submission
- Introduction/motivation - discuss why the project is
relevant, discuss previous work in area of project, etc.
- Scope of Project - discuss what you intend to do.
- Expected results- discuss what you expect to learn or
produce as a result of this project. For simulations and
analytical work, this might be bit error rate plots, software
simulators of fading, software decoders, etc. For projects
that do not include these components, the expected results
will probably be a paper that surveys several articles in the
communications literature and compares them and/or evaluates
how the proposed techniques might be used in wireless
- For team projects, discuss how each team member will
contribute to the project.
- References - this section is required for every proposal
and must be formatted as described below. The proposal should
include at least three references, not including the textbook
for the class. At least one of these references should be a
journal article. These should be cited in the text and
documented in a bibliography in the style used in IEEE
The final report should be a short (i.e, three to five pages
is acceptable, more may be necessary for more-challenging
projects) document describing the results of your project. The
final report should consist of
- Cover page, include same information as for proposal
- Introduction/Motivation - may be similar to information
in proposal. Modify as necessary based on work done in
project. Introduce scope of project and intended applications.
- Body of text - describe what work was performed.
Include necessary formulas, descriptions of software, etc.
Provide system diagrams if appropriate. Summarize
information as necessary from references, but do not
plagiarize. Do not include long derivations available in
the literature, just provide citations as necessary.
- Results - explain the output of your research. For
simulation or analytical work, provide any figures, plots,
etc. Discuss the results. Do they make sense? If you
built a decoder, how did you verify that its output is
correct? If you analyzed or simulated the performance of
some system, how did you verify your results? For survey-type
projects, discuss the various techniques that you researched.
compare and contrast the techniques and their application
to wireless communication systems.
- Conclusions - summarize the results of the project. What
did you learn? What would be some directions of future research
that could come from this project?
- References- include at least five references, unless you
can justify that there is not that much material available
in the open literature that is relevant to your project.
- Appendices - include any source code, include C files,
Matlab .m files, etc. If you used some other simulation
package, include enough material for someone skilled with
that package to recreate your system and results.
- Cited materials - Provide photocopies of all journal
articles cited. If books are cited, include photocopies of
the pages you consulted only if that number of pages is less
than 10 per book. Consult the professor if you have any
questions about whether some information needs to be
provided as photocopies. (For instance, there is no need to
provide copies of the professor's papers!)
The student may choose any project that is relevant to the class and
that is reasonable in terms of difficulty for a 6000-level class.
Here are some ideas for projects. Some notation to the relative
difficulty of the project is included. Remember that more-challenging
projects will be awarded extra credit, up to an additional 25%. If
you do a very challenging project and get a good grade on it, then I
will also count the project as a higher percentage of your total grade
if that benefits you.
- Develop a fading simulator. For instance, develop a Rayleigh
and/or Rician fading simulator based on Jakes method. (very challenging)
Or consider even more general fading models, such as Nakagami-m.
- Create a realistic signal simulator for one of the following
standards: IS-54, IS-95, GSM, WCDMA, cdma2000, 802.11. The goal is
to simulate as accurately as possible the signal produced by one of
these systems. You only need to focus on one link if forward-link
and reverse-link transmissions differ. You should simulate a simple
demodulator to help verify that the signal is correct, but you do
not need to build decoders, etc. (less challenging
challenging, depending on level of detail)
- Simulate an adaptive equalization scheme, such as an MMSE
- Investigate propagation models in the literature. Build a
simulator that generates signals according to a model you select.
- Use simulations or analysis to determine the effects of
co-channel interference for more-realistic propagation models
than the one considered in the book.
- Simulate a direct-sequence spread-spectrum (DS-SS) system.
Determine the bit error rate (BER) and compare your results to the
Gaussian approximation. You may assume equal powers and simple
modulation (BPSK or QPSK) with no error-control coding. (less
- Simulate a DS-SS system with unequal powers in the received
signals. Use successive interference cancellation to improve
the BER for weaker signals. Compare your results with and without
interference cancellation, and compare the results with the
Gaussian approximation. (more challenging)
- Simulate M-PSK or M-DPSK transmission. Compare your results to
the exact expressions. (This may require implementing some rudimentary
numerical integration techniques, as the exact expressions are not
in closed form.) (moderately challenging)
- The use of differential PSK causes error events to become correlated.
Errors tend to occur in bursts of length two. Discuss why this occurs.
Use simulations to determine the probability of a ``double error
event''. Compare your results to analytical expressions found in the
literature. (moderately challenging for BPSK, more challenging for
- The standard differential PSK demodulator operates on two symbols
at a time. Better demodulation can be achieved by operating on
blocks of more than two symbols. This is multiple-symbol differential
detection and can use maximum-likelihood sequence-estimation (MLSE)
techniques. These techniques can be applied for noncoherent or
coherent detection. Simulate the performance of DPSK with this
type of demodulator. (very challenging)
- Implement a Viterbi decoder for convolutional or trellis codes.
Test your decoder by simulating its performance for an additive white
Gaussian noise channel. (more challenging
- Implement software that can find the Hamming distances, Euclidean
distance, and/or product distances for convolutional or trellis codes.
Don't just find the minimum of these distances, but provide a distance
profile. (Note that there are an infinite number of possible error
paths for these codes, so just provide a summary up to some reasonable
distance that will be code-dependent). Discuss your results and how
they apply to different channels. (more challenging
challenging, depending on how general your software is, which
distances you consider, how many codes you consider).
- Implement a maximum a posteriori (MAP) decoder for convolutional
codes that provides a posteriori probabilities at the outputs. Discuss
how this decoder could be used for decoding turbo codes. (challenging)
- Implement a decoder for binary BCH codes (less challenging)
- Implement a decoder for Reed-Solomon codes (more challenging)
- Implement a Chase decoder for BCH or Reed-Solomon codes
- Implement an iterative decoder for simple turbo product codes.
Use very short codes for the constituent codes, so that soft-decision
decoding can be done through correlating the received word against
all possible code words. Plot error rates vs. number of iterations.
- Simulate the performance of a frequency-hop multiple access system
that employs BFSK and Reed-Solomon coding. Do not actually implement
the Reed-Solomon coding, but instead use well-known formulas that
predict the number of symbol errors that can be corrected. Discuss how
side information could be used to improve the performance by erasing
some symbols. (challenging)
- Explain the concept of entropy. Implement some simple source
compression schemes. (less challenging)
Projects with no simulation or analytical component are acceptable,
provided the student demonstrates significant knowledge of the
systems or techniques that they study. For instance, the student
should be able to compare results from different journal articles
and evaluate the advantages and disadvantages of various schemes.
- Compare multiuser detection schemes for CDMA communications.
Evaluate whether they are appropriate for mobile, wireless
- Compare equalization schemes. Evaluate whether they are
appropriate for mobile, wireless communications.
- Compare the new multiple antenna transmission schemes, sometimes
referred to as multi-input, multi-output (MIMO) schemes, such as
BLAST, space-time coding, etc. Evaluate whether they are
appropriate for mobile, wireless communications.
- Present in detail some significant aspects of the communications
systems used in ADSL, Bluetooth, HDTV, or one of the
third-generation cellular communication systems (cdma2000, WCDMA,
- Present in detail the encoding and decoding schemes for
low-density parity-check codes. Discuss the performance of these
codes. Evaluate whether they are appropriate for mobile, wireless
- Examine applications of various signal processing techniques to
wireless communications. This could include various adaptive
processing techniques, spectral analysis, EM algorithm, etc.
You may find the following reference material to be useful to you. I
will offer some very short-term loans of some of my books and journals.
The primary sources of information for this project will probably be
books and IEEE journals, magazines, and conference proceedings. The
most relevant IEEE publications are:
The magazines are probably a good source of project ideas. The journals
and proceedings provide detailed research results. These can currently
be searched using IEEE Xplore at www.ieee.org.
Another good way to find information about a particular area is to use the
Ei Compendex Web Search Page
- IEEE Transactions on Communications
- IEEE Communications Magazine
- IEEE Personal Communications Magazine
- IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology
- IEEE Transactions on Information Theory
- Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Military Communications
- Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Vehicular Technology
- Proceedings of the IEEE Conference on Global Communications
- Proceedings of the IEEE International Conference on Communications
- Proceedings of the IEEE International Symposium on Information
Here are some books that might be particularly useful:
If any part of your project has been used for another class or if your
project is an extension of work done for another class, please
indicate clearly what is new in your project submitted for this class.
EEL 6509 - Wireless Communications
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