Joint timing and frequency synchronization in coherent optical OFDM systems

Xinwei Du, Pooi Yuen Kam, Changyuan Yu

Research output: Journal article publicationReview articleAcademic researchpeer-review

3 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we review our joint timing and frequency synchronization algorithms in coherent optical orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (CO-OFDM) systems. We first present a timing estimation method by designing the pattern of the training symbol, whose timing metric has a sharp and clear peak, to ensure accurate timing offset (TO) estimation performance. Then we provide both data-aided (DA) and blind (BL) approaches to estimate the carrier frequency offset (CFO). For the DA algorithm, we utilize the same training symbol structure as the timing estimation does, while for the BL algorithm, we utilize the zero-subcarrier power (ZSP) to achieve full-range CFO estimation. Note that our joint timing and frequency synchronization approaches require only one OFDM symbol, which ensure not only the data transmission efficiency, but also the TO and CFO estimation performance. A modified BL ZSP algorithm is proposed to further improve the CFO estimation performance by taking the power average over a series of OFDM symbols. The effectiveness of the TO estimation algorithm, and both the DA and BL CFO estimation algorithms are verified and demonstrated in both simulations and experiments.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)4-14
Number of pages11
JournalFrontiers of Optoelectronics
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2019


  • carrier frequency offset (CFO)
  • coherent optical orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (CO-OFDM)
  • timing offset (TO)
  • zero-subcarrier power (ZSP)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Electronic, Optical and Magnetic Materials
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering

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