Offset quadrature amplitude modulation (offset-QAM) orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM) exhibits enhanced net data rates compared to conventional OFDM, and reduced complexity compared to Nyquist FDM (N-FDM). However, channel estimation in discrete-Fourier-transform (DFT) based offset-QAM OFDM is different from that in conventional OFDM and requires particular study. In this paper, we derive a closed-form expression for the demultiplexed signal in DFT-based offset-QAM systems and show that although the residual crosstalk is orthogonal to the decoded signal, its existence degrades the channel estimation performance when the conventional least-square method is applied. We propose and investigate four channel estimation algorithms for offset-QAM OFDM that vary in terms of performance, complexity, and tolerance to system parameters. It is theoretically and experimentally shown that simple channel estimation can be realized in offset-QAM OFDM with the achieved performance close to the theoretical limit. This, together with the existing advantages over conventional OFDM and N-FDM, makes this technology very promising for optical communication systems.
© 2014 Optical Society of America
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