Threshold-Based Fast Successive-Cancellation Decoding of Polar Codes

Haotian Zheng, Seyyed Ali Hashemi, Alexios Balatsoukas-Stimming, Zizheng Cao, Ton Koonen, John Cioffi, Andrea Goldsmith

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Fast SC decoding overcomes the latency caused by the serial nature of the SC decoding by identifying new nodes in the upper levels of the SC decoding tree and implementing their fast parallel decoders. In this work, we first present a novel sequence repetition node corresponding to a particular class of bit sequences. Most existing special node types are special cases of the proposed sequence repetition node. Then, a fast parallel decoder is proposed for this class of node. To further speed up the decoding process of general nodes outside this class, a threshold-based hard-decision-aided scheme is introduced. The threshold value that guarantees a given error-correction performance in the proposed scheme is derived theoretically. Analysis and hardware implementation results on a polar code of length 1024 with code rates 1/4, 1/2, and 3/4 show that our proposed algorithm reduces the required clock cycles by up to 8%, and leads to a 10% improvement in the maximum operating frequency compared to state-of-the-art decoders without tangibly altering the error-correction performance. In addition, using the proposed threshold-based hard-decision-aided scheme, the decoding latency can be further reduced by 57% at Eb/N0=5.0 dB.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalIEEE Transactions on Communications
StateAccepted/In press - 2021
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Corporate acquisitions
  • Decoding
  • Electrical engineering
  • Fast successive-cancellation decoding
  • Hardware
  • Parallel processing
  • Polar codes
  • Polar codes
  • Sequence repetition node
  • Threshold-based hard-decision-aided scheme
  • Ultra reliable low latency communication

Fingerprint Dive into the research topics of 'Threshold-Based Fast Successive-Cancellation Decoding of Polar Codes'. Together they form a unique fingerprint.

Cite this