In wireless communications, higher transmission power enables higher coverage or higher data rate. However, due to hardware limitations, achieving high power efficiency becomes challenging. The main issue is that at high power region close to power amplifier (PA) saturation point the highly non-linear response of the PA leads to significant spectral regrowth. In such a case, waveforms with inherently good spectral containment allow for more spectral degradation and can be seen as the most effective solution for the problem. In this study, a fifth-generation new radio (5G NR) user equipment (UE) transmit power is improved by utilizing fast-convolution filtered orthogonal-frequency-division-multiplexing (FC-F-OFDM) waveform, which has an excellent spectral containment performance. A novel method is proposed for improving the peak-to-average-power ratio (PAPR) of FC-F-OFDM waveform, based on applying clipping before FC processing and allocating the clipping noise that stems from the applied clipping, over not only on active band, but a wider band consisting of both the in-band and guard-band regions. An accurate transmitter chain simulator including a measured memory-polynomial model of a practical PA is used to evaluate a wide set of different subcarrier spacings and channel bandwidths. Then, to validate the numerical results, a software-defined radio (SDR) based testbed is created and the modeled PA is used in this testbed. Weighted overlap-and-add (WOLA) based OFDM, also with clipping, is used as a reference in both the numerical evaluations and in measurements. For both waveforms, the transmitted signal quality, out-of-band emissions, and maximum PA output powers are measured under 5G NR specifications and results for different subcarrier spacings and channel bandwidths are provided to prove the benefits and robustness of the presented FC-F-OFDM approach.
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