Media Modulation based Molecular Communication

Brand L, Garkisch M, Lotter S, Schäfer M, Burkovski A, Sticht H, Castiglione K, Schober R (2022)

Publication Type: Journal article

Publication year: 2022


Original Authors: Lukas Brand, Moritz Garkisch, Sebastian Lotter, Maximilian Schafer, Andreas Burkovski, Heinrich Sticht, Kathrin Castiglione, Robert Schober

Pages Range: 1-1

DOI: 10.1109/TCOMM.2022.3205949


In conventional molecular communication (MC) systems, the signaling molecules used for information transmission are stored, released, and then replenished by a transmitter (TX). However, the replenishment of signaling molecules at the TX is challenging in practice. Furthermore, in most envisioned MC applications, e.g., in the medical field, it is not desirable to insert the TX into the MC system, as this might impair natural biological processes. In this paper, we propose the concept of media modulation based MC where the TX is placed outside the channel and utilizes signaling molecules already present inside the system. The signaling molecules can assume different states which can be switched by external stimuli. Hence, in media modulation based MC, the TX modulates information into the state of the signaling molecules. In particular, we exploit the group of photochromic molecules, which undergo light-induced reversible state transitions, for media modulation. We study the usage of these molecules for information transmission in a three-dimensional duct system, which contains an eraser, a TX, and a receiver for erasing, writing, and reading of information via external light, respectively. We develop a statistical model for the received signal which accounts for the distribution of the signaling molecules in the system, the initial states of the signaling molecules, the reliability of the state control mechanism, the randomness of irrepressible, spontaneous state switching, and the randomness of molecule propagation. We adopt a maximum likelihood detector and show that it can be reduced to a threshold based detector. Furthermore, we derive analytical expressions for the optimal threshold value and the resulting bit error rate (BER), respectively. Both the statistical model and BER results are verified by computer simulations. Our results reveal that media modulation enables reliable information transmission, validating it as a promising alternative to MC based on molecule emitting TXs.

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How to cite


Brand, L., Garkisch, M., Lotter, S., Schäfer, M., Burkovski, A., Sticht, H.,... Schober, R. (2022). Media Modulation based Molecular Communication. IEEE Transactions on Communications, 1-1.


Brand, Lukas, et al. "Media Modulation based Molecular Communication." IEEE Transactions on Communications (2022): 1-1.

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