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In this paper, the authors determine how to minimize energy consumption per information bit in a single link, with the consideration of packet retransmission and overhead. This is achieved by deriving expressions for the optimum target bit error probability and packet length at different transmission distances. Furthermore, the energy consumptions of different modulation schemes are compared over an Additive White Gaussian Noise (AWGN) channel. Finally, it is shown that the optimum target bit error probability and packet length converge to a constant value for long distances. Numerical results show that at short distances, it is optimum to use bandwidth efficient modulation with large packets and low target BER, and at long distances, it is optimum to use energy efficient modulation with short packets and high target BER.
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