Several authors have addressed the problem of designing good linear unequal error protection (LUEP) codes. However, very little is known about good nonbinary LUEP codes. We present a class of optimal nonbinary LUEP codes for two different sets of messages. By combining t-error-correcting ReedSolomon (RS) codes and shortened nonbinary Hamming codes, we obtain nonbinary LUEP codes that protect one set of messages against any t or fewer symbol errors and the remaining set of messages against any single symbol error. For t ≥ 2, we show that these codes are optimal in the sense of achieving the Hamming lower bound on the number of redundant symbols of a nonbinary LUEP code with the same parameters.
Morelos-Zaragoza, Robert H. and Lin, Shu, "On a Class of Optimal Nonbinary Linear Unequal-Error-Protection Codes for Two Sets of Messages" (1994). Faculty Publications. Paper 6.