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Base stations developed according to the 3GPP Long Term Evolution (LTE) standard require unprecedented processing power. 3GPP LTE enables data rates beyond hundreds of Mbits/s by using advanced technologies, necessitating a highly complex LTE physical layer. The operating power of base stations is a significant cost for operators, and is currently optimized using state-of-the-art hardware solutions, such as heterogeneous distributed systems. The traditional system design method of porting algorithms to heterogeneous distributed systems based on test-and-refine methods is a manual, thus time-expensive, task.

Physical Layer Multi-Core Prototyping: A Dataflow-Based Approach provides a clear introduction to the 3GPP LTE physical layer and to dataflow-based prototyping and programming. The difficulties in the process of 3GPP LTE physical layer porting are outlined, with particular focus on automatic partitioning and scheduling, load balancing and computation latency reduction, specifically in systems based on heterogeneous multi-core Digital Signal Processors. Multi-core prototyping methods based on algorithm dataflow modeling and architecture system-level modeling are assessed with the goal of automating and optimizing algorithm porting.

With its analysis of physical layer processing and proposals of parallel programming methods, which include automatic partitioning and scheduling, Physical Layer Multi-Core Prototyping: A Dataflow-Based Approach is a key resource for researchers and students. This study of LTE algorithms which require dynamic or static assignment and dynamic or static scheduling, allows readers to reassess and expand their knowledge of this vital component of LTE base station design.



Chapter 1. Introduction

The recent evolution of digital communication systems (voice, data and video) has been dramatic. Over the last two decades, low data-rate systems (such as dial-up modems, first and second generation cellular systems, 802.11 Wireless local area networks) have been replaced or augmented by systems capable of data rates of several Mbps, supporting multimedia applications (such as DSL, cable modems, 802.11b/a/g/n wireless local area networks, 3G, WiMax and ultra-wideband personal area networks).
Maxime Pelcat, Slaheddine Aridhi, Jonathan Piat, Jean-François Nezan

Chapter 2. 3GPP Long Term Evolution

Terrestrial mobile telecommunications started in the early 1980s using various analog systems developed in Japan and Europe. The Global System for Mobile communications (GSM) digital standard was subsequently developed by the European Telecommunications Standards Institute (ETSI) in the early 1990s. Available in 219 countries, GSM belongs to the second generation mobile phone system. It can provide an international mobility to its users by using inter-operator roaming. The success of GSM promoted the creation of the Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP), a standard-developing organization dedicated to supporting GSM evolution and creating new telecommunication standards, in particular a Third Generation Telecommunication System (3G). The current members of 3GPP are ETSI (Europe), ATIS(USA), ARIB (Japan), TTC (Japan), CCSA (China) and TTA (Korea). In 2010, there are 1.3 million 2G and 3G base stations around the world and the number of GSM users surpasses 3.5 billion.
Maxime Pelcat, Slaheddine Aridhi, Jonathan Piat, Jean-François Nezan

Chapter 3. Dataflow Model of Computation

To study the LTE physical layer on multi-core architectures, a Model of Computation (MoC) is needed to specify the LTE algorithms. This MoC must have the necessary expressivity, must show the algorithm parallelism and must be capable of locating system bottlenecks.
Maxime Pelcat, Slaheddine Aridhi, Jonathan Piat, Jean-François Nezan

Chapter 4. Rapid Prototyping and Programming Multi-Core Architectures

This chapter gives an over view of the existing work on rapid prototyping and multi-core deployment in the signal processing world. The concept of rapid prototyping was introduced in Fig. 1.2 when outlining the structure of this document. It consists of automatically generating a system simulation or a system prototype from quickly constructed models. Rapid prototyping may be used for several purposes; this study uses it to manage the parallelism of DSP architectures. Parallelism must be handled differently for the macroscopic or microscopic views of a system.
Maxime Pelcat, Slaheddine Aridhi, Jonathan Piat, Jean-François Nezan

Chapter 5. A System-Level Architecture Model

For the LTE physical layer to be properly prototyped, the target hardware architectures need to be specified at system-level, using a simple model focusing on architectural limitations. The System-Level Architecture Model (S-LAM), which enables such specifications. Sections 5.2.4 and 5.3 explain how to compute routes between operators from an S-LAM specification and Sect. 5.4 shows how transfers on these routes are simulated. Finally, the role of the S-LAM model in the rapid prototyping process.
Maxime Pelcat, Slaheddine Aridhi, Jonathan Piat, Jean-François Nezan

Chapter 6. Enhanced Rapid Prototyping

In Chap. 4, an overview of the multi-core scheduling problem and solutions presented in the literature were summarized. A flexible rapid prototyping process has an important role to play in all the design steps of a multi-core DSP system.
Maxime Pelcat, Slaheddine Aridhi, Jonathan Piat, Jean-François Nezan

Chapter 7. Dataflow LTE Models

The objectives of rapid prototyping are introduced in Chap.1. Figure 6.1 illustrates the process of rapid prototyping. Technical background on the subject is explored in Chapter 4. In this chapter, models for the LTE rapid prototyping process are explained. From these models, execution can be simulated and optimized using multi-core scheduling heuristics and code can also be generated. The LTE models are novel and can complement the standard documents for a better understanding of the LTE eNodeB physical layer. After a general view of the LTE model is given in Sect. 7.2, the three parts of the LTE eNodeB physical layer are detailed in Sects. 7.3–7.5. LTE rapid prototyping is processed by a Java-base framework which includes PREESM. The elements of this framework are introduced in following sections.
Maxime Pelcat, Slaheddine Aridhi, Jonathan Piat, Jean-François Nezan

Chapter 8. Generating Code from LTE Models

Literature on automatic multi-core code generation was reviewed in Sect. 4.5 and scheduling strategies in Sect. 4.4.1. In this section, generated code execution schemes are defined, detailing how code is generated from a given scheduling strategy.
Maxime Pelcat, Slaheddine Aridhi, Jonathan Piat, Jean-François Nezan

Chapter 9. Conclusion

The most recent algorithms and architectures for embedded systems have become so complex that a system-level view of projects from the early design stages to the implementation is now necessary in order to avoid bad design choices and to meet deadlines. A multi-core DSP implementation of a 3GPP LTE base station is representative of these new complex systems which require high optimization. The software of such a heterogeneous embedded distributed system cannot be efficiently developed without a special development chain based on rapid prototyping and system-level simulation. In this book, software rapid prototyping methods were introduced to replace certain tedious and sub-optimal steps of the present test-and-refine methodologies for embedded software development. These techniques were applied to the study of a 3GPP LTE base station physical layer.
Maxime Pelcat, Slaheddine Aridhi, Jonathan Piat, Jean-François Nezan


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