Impairment Models for Performance Evaluation of Digital Modulations in the Millimeter Wave Range
The use of millimeter waves in wireless communication systems is expected to pave the way for solving the problem of spectrum scarcity currently experienced in lower frequencies, yet allowing for higher bit rates. However, impairments that are not of major concern in lower frequencies become relevant performance deterioration causes in the millimeter wave range, for instance the high signal attenuation and shadowing, as well as hardware-dependent impairments like phase noise, I-Q imbalance, and amplifier nonlinearities. In this tutorial article, the recent theory about these impairments are reviewed and applied to the development of models for assessing the performance of digital modulations in the millimeter wave range, under the separate and the joint effect of such impairments. The developed models are then used in the performance analysis of the M-ary frequency-shift keying (MFSK) modulation with non-coherent detection, and of the M-ary phase-shift keying (MPSK) and M-ary quadrature amplitude modulation (MQAM) with coherent detection. Simulation results bring out the different degrees of robustness of these modulations to the modeled impairments, highlighting the attractiveness of the MFSK and the 16QAM.
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