Relay advantage criterion for multihop decode-and-forward relaying systems

Young Gil Kim, Norman C. Beaulieu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

7 Scopus citations


We define a symbol transition matrix (STM) as a matrix whose entries are the symbol transition probabilities of a relay in a decode-and-forward (DF) relaying system. Using the STM as a state transition matrix of a discrete-time Markov chain, the source-to-destination STM is shown to be the product of intermediate STMs in multihop DF relaying systems. We show that the probability of correct decision at the destination is the trace of the source-to-destination STM divided by the modulation order. The symbol error probabilities (SEPs) of multihop DF relaying systems with any modulation scheme in any independent and nonidentically distributed (ind) channels are derived using the STM. For multihop DF relaying systems in independent and identically distributed (iid) channels, the eigenvalues of the single link STM are used to simplify the calculation of the SEP for any modulation scheme. Also, the SEP of multihop DF relaying systems with 16-quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM) signals in ind Rayleigh fading channels is derived using the STM. A relay advantage criterion is derived for multihop DF relaying systems in iid Nakagami-m fading channels with both the total transmitted energy and the source-to-destination distance fixed. The relay advantage criterion can be used for deciding whether putting more relays between the source and the destination increases or decreases the SEP.

Original languageEnglish
Article number6747293
Pages (from-to)1988-1999
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications
Issue number4
StatePublished - Apr 2014


  • Decode-and-forward (DF)
  • multihop
  • quadrature amplitude modulation (QAM)
  • relay advantage criterion
  • relaying
  • symbol transition matrix (STM)


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