LDPC Coding for Magnetic Storage: Low Floor Decoding Algorithms, System Design and Performance Analysis
Committee ChairRyan, William E.
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PublisherThe University of Arizona.
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AbstractLow-density parity check (LDPC) codes have experienced tremendous popularity due to their capacity-achieving performance. In this dissertation, several different aspects of LDPC coding and its applications to magnetic storage are investigated. One of the most significant issues that impedes the use of LDPC codes in many systems is the error-rate floor phenomenon associated with their iterative decoders. By delineating the fundamental principles, we extend to partial response channels algorithms for predicting the error rate performance in the floor region for the binary-input AWGN channel. We develop three classes of decoding algorithms for mitigating the error floor by directly tackling the cause of the problem: trapping sets. In our experiments, these algorithms provide multiple orders of improvement over conventional decoders at the cost of various implementation complexity increases.Product codes are widely used in magnetic recording systems where errors are both isolated and bursty. A dual-mode decoding technique for Reed-Solomon-code-based product codes is proposed, where the second decoding mode involves maximum-likelihood erasure decoding of the binary images of the Reed-Solomon codewords. By exploring a tape storage application, we demonstrate that this dual-mode decoding system dramatically improves the performance of product codes. Moreover, the complexity added by the second decoding mode is manageable. We also show the performance of this technique on a product code which has an LDPC code in the columns.Run-length-limited (RLL) codes are ubiquitous in today's disk drives. Using RLL codes has enabled drive designers to pack data very efficiently onto the platter surface by ensuring stable symbol-timing recovery. We consider a concatenation system design with an LDPC code and an RLL code as components to simultaneously achieve desirable features such as: soft information availability to the LDPC decoder, the preservation of the LDPC code's structure, and the capability of correcting long erasure bursts.We analyze the performance of LDPC-coded magnetic recording channel in the presence of media noise. We employ advanced signal processing for the pattern-dependent-noise-predictive channel detectors, and demonstrate that a gain of over 1 dB or a linear density gain of about 8% relative to a comparable Reed-Solomon is attainable by using an LDPC code.