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A Single Detector Versus an Array of Detectors Receiver in Free-Space Optical Communications: A Performance Comparison
  • Muhammad Salman Bashir ,
  • Ming-Cheng Tsai ,
  • Mohamed-Slim Alouini
Muhammad Salman Bashir
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Ming-Cheng Tsai
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Mohamed-Slim Alouini
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Free-space optical (FSO) communications is an important technology that will be used for supporting high data-rates in the backhaul of next generation of wireless communication networks. In this paper, we have compared the probability of error performance of two types of receivers used in FSO today: a receiver based on a single detector, and a receiver based on an array of detectors. The performance of these two receivers is compared for a number of fusion algorithms for an array of detectors such as equal gain combiner (EGC), selection combiner (SC), switched combiner (SWC) and the maximal ratio combiner (MRC). From this study, we conclude that even though the array of detectors adds more noise in the sufficient statistic by virtue of large number of detectors, using more computationally expensive fusion algorithms (such as SC and MRC) can help us achieve a superior probability of error performance as opposed to a single-detector receiver for practical channel conditions.