Performance Bounds for Maximum Likelihood
Detection of Single Carrier FDMA
Mark Geles, Amir Averbuch, Ofer Amrani and Doron Ezri
Single carrier FDMA (SC-FDMA) plays an important role in modern wireless communications as an alternative to
OFDM since mainly it exhibits low peak-to-average power ratio (PAPR). Hence, SC-FDMA is employed as the uplink
scheme for the 3GPP long term evolution (LTE). In the presence of multipath, the SC-FDMA signal may arrive at the
receiver perturbed by inter-symbol-interference (ISI). It is similar to other SC transmission schemes. This makes the
standard single tap frequency domain equalization suboptimal. Optimal maximum likelihood (ML) detection for SC-
FDMA is in most cases prohibitively complex, making it useful mostly as a performance bound for suboptimal detection
schemes. In this work, the performance of the optimal decoder for SC-FDMA is analyzed. The analysis can be applied
to a generalized SC-FDE scheme as well, however, in this paper we chose the SC-FDMA setting as a study case. Bit
error rate (BER) closed form bounds are provided for low and high SNR regimes in correlated and uncorrelated Rayleigh
fading channels. These bounds reveal that the diversity order at high SNR is significantly smaller than in low SNR regime.
Moreover, error rate flaring behavior is demonstrated under optimal detection of SC-FDMA. The analytical results are
verified by simulations.
Maximum Likelihood, Single Carrier FDMA.