We report an adaptive weighted channel equalizer (AWCE) for orthogonal frequency division multiplexing (OFDM) and study its performance for long-haul coherent optical OFDM (CO-OFDM) transmission systems. This equalizer updates the equalization parameters on a symbol-by-symbol basis thus can track slight drifts of the optical channel. This is suitable to combat polarization mode dispersion (PMD) degradation while increasing the periodicity of pilot symbols which can be translated into a significant overhead reduction. Furthermore, AWCE can increase the precision of RF-pilot enabled phase noise estimation in the presence of noise, using data-aided phase noise estimation. Simulation results corroborate the capability of AWCE in both overhead reduction and improving the quality of the phase noise compensation (PNC).
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