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Channel Identification Machines

DOI: 10.1155/2012/209590

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We present a formal methodology for identifying a channel in a system consisting of a communication channel in cascade with an asynchronous sampler. The channel is modeled as a multidimensional filter, while models of asynchronous samplers are taken from neuroscience and communications and include integrate-and-fire neurons, asynchronous sigma/delta modulators and general oscillators in cascade with zero-crossing detectors. We devise channel identification algorithms that recover a projection of the filter(s) onto a space of input signals loss-free for both scalar and vector-valued test signals. The test signals are modeled as elements of a reproducing kernel Hilbert space (RKHS) with a Dirichlet kernel. Under appropriate limiting conditions on the bandwidth and the order of the test signal space, the filter projection converges to the impulse response of the filter. We show that our results hold for a wide class of RKHSs, including the space of finite-energy bandlimited signals. We also extend our channel identification results to noisy circuits. 1. Introduction Signal distortions introduced by a communication channel can severely affect the reliability of communication systems. If properly utilized, knowledge of the channel response can lead to a dramatic improvement in the performance of a communication link. In practice, however, information about the channel is rarely available a priori and the channel needs to be identified at the receiver. A number of channel identification methods [1] have been proposed for traditional clock-based systems that rely on the classical sampling theorem [2, 3]. However, there is a growing need to develop channel identification methods for asynchronous nonlinear systems, of which time encoding machines (TEMs) [4] are a prime example. TEMs naturally arise as models of early sensory systems in neuroscience [5, 6] as well as models of nonlinear samplers in signal processing and analog-to-discrete (A/D) converters in communication systems [4, 6]. Unlike traditional clock-based amplitude-domain devices, TEMs encode analog signals as a strictly increasing sequence of irregularly spaced times . As such, they are closely related to irregular (amplitude) samplers [4, 7] and, due to their asynchronous nature, are inherently low-power devices [8]. TEMs are also readily amenable to massive parallelization [9]. Furthermore, under certain conditions, TEMs faithfully represent analog signals in the time domain; given the parameters of the TEM and the time sequence at its output, a time decoding machine (TDM) can recover the encoded


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