Analog joint source channel coding for optical communications and image transmission

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University of Delaware
An analog joint source channel coding (JSCC) system is developed for wireless optical communications. Source symbols are mapped directly onto channel symbols using space filling curves and then a non-linear stretching function is used to reduce distortion. Different from digital systems, the proposed scheme does not require long block lengths to achieve good performance reducing the complexity of the decoder signficantly. This work focuses on intensity-modulated direct-detection (IM/DD) optical wireless systems. First, a theoretical analysis of the IM/DD wireless optical channel is presented and the prototype communication system designed to transmit data using analog JSCC is introduced. The nonlinearities of the real channel are studied and characterized. A novel technique to mitigate the channel nonlinearities is presented. The performance of the real system follows the simulations and closely approximates the theoretical limits. The proposed system is then used for image transmission by first taking samples of a set of images using compressive sensing and then encoding the measurements using analog JSCC. Both simulation and experimental results are shown.