An algorithm for estimating the delay of a periodic pseudonoise (PN) sequence is presented. It is a rapid, block-based estimator that can be used for both linear and nonlinear codes. The algorithm exploits the periodicity of the difference between the phase spectra of the received sequence and a local reference. The estimator takes the Fourier transform of the phase spectrum difference data, and searches for the fundamental frequency. Unlike previously described methods, phase unwrapping is not required. The performance in the presence of additive white Gaussian noise (AWGN) and a continuous wave (CW) jammer is investigated using computer simulation. Comparisons are made against the delay maximum likelihood estimator (MLE) and other published results. While the proposed estimator has a complexity similar to that of the MLE, it has a relative performance loss of 7 dB under AWGN. However, the proposed estimator can outperform the MLE by 14.5 dB when a CW jammer is present.

Meeting Name

1993 IEEE Global Telecommunications Conference, including a Communications Theory Mini-Conference, GLOBECOM '93 (1993: Nov. 29-Dec. 2, Houston, TX)


Electrical and Computer Engineering

Keywords and Phrases

Fourier Transform; Fourier Transforms; Additive White Gaussian Noise; Block Codes; Block-Based Estimator; Continuous Wave Jammer; Delay Maximum Likelihood Estimator; Delays; Fundamental Frequency; Jamming; Linear Codes; Nonlinear Codes; Parameter Estimation; Periodic PN Sequence Delay Estimation; Periodic Pseudonoise Sequence; Phase Spectrum Data; Random Noise; Relative Performance Loss; Spectral Analysis; Spread Spectrum Communication; White Noise

International Standard Book Number (ISBN)


Document Type

Article - Conference proceedings

Document Version

Final Version

File Type





© 1993 Institute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE), All rights reserved.