Symbol Synchronization for Diffusion-Based Molecular Communications

Beitrag in einer Fachzeitschrift

Details zur Publikation

Autorinnen und Autoren: Jamali Kooshkghazi V, Ahmadzadeh A, Schober R
Zeitschrift: IEEE Transactions on Nanobioscience
Jahr der Veröffentlichung: 2018
Band: 16
Heftnummer: 8
Seitenbereich: 873 - 887
ISSN: 1536-1241
Sprache: Englisch


Symbol synchronization refers to the estimation of the start of a symbol interval and is needed for reliable detection. In this paper, we develop several symbol synchronization schemes for molecular communication (MC) systems where we consider some practical challenges, which have not been addressed in the literature yet. In particular, we take into account that in MC systems, the transmitter may not be equipped with an internal clock and may not be able to emit molecules with a fixed release frequency. Such restrictions hold for practical nanotransmitters, e.g., modified cells, where the lengths of the symbol intervals may vary due to the inherent randomness in the availability of food and energy for molecule generation, the process for molecule production, and the release process. To address this issue, we develop two synchronization-detection frameworks which both employ two types of molecule. In the first framework, one type of molecule is used for symbol synchronization and the other one is used for data detection, whereas in the second framework, both types of molecule are used for joint symbol synchronization and data detection. For both frameworks, we first derive the optimal maximum likelihood (ML) symbol synchronization schemes as performance upper bounds. Since ML synchronization entails high complexity, for each framework, we also propose three low-complexity suboptimal schemes, namely a linear filter-based scheme, a peak observation-based scheme, and a threshold-trigger scheme, which are suitable for MC systems with limited computational capabilities. Furthermore, we study the relative complexity and the constraints associated with the proposed schemes and the impact of the insertion and deletion errors that arise due to imperfect synchronization. Our simulation results reveal the effectiveness of the proposed synchronization schemes and suggest that the end-to-end performance of MC systems significantly depends on the accuracy of the symbol synchronization.

FAU-Autorinnen und Autoren / FAU-Herausgeberinnen und Herausgeber

Ahmadzadeh, Arman
Lehrstuhl für Digitale Übertragung
Jamali Kooshkghazi, Vahid Dr.-Ing.
Lehrstuhl für Digitale Übertragung
Schober, Robert Prof. Dr.-Ing.
Lehrstuhl für Digitale Übertragung


Jamali Kooshkghazi, V., Ahmadzadeh, A., & Schober, R. (2018). Symbol Synchronization for Diffusion-Based Molecular Communications. IEEE Transactions on Nanobioscience, 16(8), 873 - 887.

Jamali Kooshkghazi, Vahid, Arman Ahmadzadeh, and Robert Schober. "Symbol Synchronization for Diffusion-Based Molecular Communications." IEEE Transactions on Nanobioscience 16.8 (2018): 873 - 887.


Zuletzt aktualisiert 2019-06-09 um 13:10