Off-Grid Channel Estimation With Sparse Bayesian Learning for OTFS Systems

This paper proposes an off-grid channel estimation scheme for orthogonal time-frequency space (OTFS) systems adopting the sparse Bayesian learning (SBL) framework. To avoid channel spreading caused by the fractional delay and Doppler shifts and to fully exploit the channel sparsity in the delay-Doppler (DD) domain, we estimate the original DD domain channel response rather than the effective DD domain channel response as commonly adopted in the literature. OTFS channel estimation is firstly formulated as a one-dimensional (1D) off-grid sparse signal recovery (SSR) problem based on a virtual sampling grid defined in the DD space, where the on-grid and off-grid components of the delay and Doppler shifts are separated for estimation. In particular, the on-grid components of the delay and Doppler shifts are jointly determined by the entry indices with significant values in the recovered sparse vector. Then, the corresponding off-grid components are modeled as hyper-parameters in the proposed SBL framework, which can be estimated via the expectation-maximization method. To strike a balance between channel estimation performance and computational complexity, we further propose a two-dimensional (2D) off-grid SSR problem via decoupling the delay and Doppler shift estimations. In our developed 1D and 2D off-grid SBL-based channel estimation algorithms, the hyper-parameters are updated alternatively for computing the conditional posterior distribution of channels, which can be exploited to reconstruct the effective DD domain channel. Compared with the 1D method, the proposed 2D method enjoys a much lower computational complexity while only suffers a slight performance degradation. Simulation results verify the superior performance of the proposed channel estimation schemes over state-of-the-art schemes.
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