 ## Resolving Phase Ambiguity through Unique Word and Differential Encoding and Decoding

In the context of carrier synchronization, we have discussed the Costas loop and other techniques before. Today, we discuss the significance of differential encoding and decoding for phase ambiguity resolution. Keep in mind that this topic is different than differential detection. In the former case, the data bits are encoded before modulation and decoded after demodulation in a differential manner. Nevertheless, the demodulation is still coherent (i.e., it requires carrier synchronization). In the latter case, the data symbols are detected during demodulation through differential operations, thus canceling the effect of channel phase and eliminating the need for carrier synchronization. Let us explore this idea further. Background We start with the expression for a simple phase error detector that is a ## What is Carrier Phase Offset and How It Affects the Symbol Detection

In case of Quadrature Amplitude Modulation (QAM) and other passband modulation schemes, Rx has no information about carrier phase of the Tx oscillator. Let us explore what impact this has on the demodulation process. Constellation Rotation To see the effect of the carrier phase offset, consider that a transmitted passband signal consists of two PAM waveforms in $I$ and $Q$ arms denoted by $v_I(t)$ and $v_Q(t)$ respectively and combined as \begin{equation}\label{eqRealWorldQAMPhaseOffset} s(t) = v_I(t) \sqrt{2} \cos 2\pi F_C t – v_Q(t) \sqrt{2}\sin 2\pi F_C t \end{equation} Here, $F_C$ is the carrier frequency and $v_I(t)$ and $v_Q(t)$ are the continuous versions of sampled signals $v_I(nT_S)$ and $v_Q(nT_S)$ given by \begin{equation} \begin{aligned}\label{eqRealWorldvIvQ} v_I(nT_S)\: &= \sum _{i} a_I[i] p(nT_S-iT_M) \\ v_Q(nT_S) &= \sum 