Combining Adaptive Coding and Modulation with Hierarchical Modulation in Satcom Systems
The authors investigate the design of a broadcast system in order to maximize throughput. This task is usually challenging due to channel variability. Forty years ago, Cover introduced and compared two schemes: time sharing and superposition coding. Even if the second scheme was proved to be optimal for some channels, modern satellite communications systems such as DVB-SH and DVB-S2 rely mainly on a time sharing strategy to optimize the throughput. They consider hierarchical modulation, a practical implementation of superposition coding, but only for unequal error protection or backward compatibility purposes.