September 05, 2016

GLDPC-Staircase AL-FEC codes: a fundamental study and new results

  • Mattoussi F.
  • Roca V.
  • Sayadi B.

This paper provides fundamentals in the design and analysis of Generalized Low-Density Parity Check (GLDPC)-Staircase codes over the erasure channel. These codes are constructed by extending an LDPC-Staircase code (base code) using Reed-Solomon (RS) codes (outer codes) in order to benefit from more powerful decoders. The GLDPC-Staircase coding scheme adds, in addition to the LDPC-Staircase repair symbols, extra-repair symbols that can be produced on demand and in large quantities, which provides small rate capabilities. Therefore, these codes are extremely flexible as they can be tuned to behave either like predefined rate LDPC-Staircase codes at one extreme, or like a single RS code at another extreme, or like small rate codes. Concerning the code design, we show that RS codes with ``quasi{''} Hankel matrix-based construction fulfill the desired structure properties, and that a hybrid (IT/RS/ML) decoding is feasible that achieves maximum likelihood (ML) correction capabilities at a lower complexity. Concerning performance analysis, we detail an asymptotic analysis method based on density evolution (DE), extrinsic information transfer (EXIT), and the area theorem. Based on several asymptotic and finite length results, after selecting the optimal internal parameters, we demonstrate that GLDPC-Staircase codes feature excellent erasure recovery capabilities, close to that of ideal codes, both with large and very small objects. From this point of view, they outperform LDPC-Staircase and Raptor codes and achieve correction capabilities close to those of RaptorQ codes. Therefore, all these results make GLDPC-Staircase codes a universal Application-Layer FEC (AL-FEC) solution for many situations that require erasure protection such as media streaming or file multicast transmission.

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