Iterative joint source-channel decoding of variable-length codes using residual source redundancy

Jörg Kliewer, Ragnar Thobaben

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

64 Scopus citations


We present a novel symbol-based soft-input a posteriori probability (APP) decoder for packetized variable-length encoded source indexes transmitted over wireless channels where the residual redundancy after source encoding is exploited for error protection. In combination with a mean-square or maximum APP estimation of the reconstructed source data, the whole decoding process is close to optimal. Furthermore, solutions for the proposed APP decoder with reduced complexity are discussed and compared to the near-optimal solution. When, in addition, channel codes are employed for protecting the variable-length encoded data, an iterative source-channel decoder can be obtained in the same way as for serially concatenated codes, where the proposed APP source decoder then represents one of the two constituent decoders. The simulation results show that this iterative decoding technique leads to substantial error protection for variable-length encoded correlated source signals, especially, when they are transmitted over highly corrupted channels.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)919-928
Number of pages10
JournalIEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications
Issue number3
StatePublished - May 2005
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


  • Iterative decoding
  • Joint source-channel coding
  • Residual source redundancy
  • Variable-length codes (VLCs)


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