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Blockchain-Assisted Spectrum Trading between Elastic Virtual Optical Networks

by   Shifeng Ding, et al.

In communication networks, network virtualization can usually provide better capacity utilization and quality of service (QoS) than what can be achieved otherwise. However, conventional resource allocation for virtualized networks would still follow a fixed pattern based on the predicted capacity needs of the users, even though, in reality, the actual traffic demand of a user will always tend to fluctuate. The mismatch between the fixed capacity allocation and the actual fluctuating traffic would lead to degradation of provisioned network services and inefficiency in the assigned network capacity. To overcome this, we propose a new spectrum trading (ST) scheme between virtual optical networks (VONs) in the context of an elastic optical network (EON). The key idea here is to allow different VONs to trade their spectrum resources according to the actual capacity they need at different time instants. A VON with unused spectra can then trade away its unused spectra to other VONs that are short of spectrum resources at that time. In exchange, it is rewarded with a certain amount of credit for its contribution to the ST community, which it can then use later to get extra bandwidth, if needed. The trust-worthiness of the trading records between the VONs is ensured in a distributed fashion through a blockchain-assisted account book that is updated whenever a new trade occurs. For this, we develop a software-defined control plane to enable spectrum trading in an EON. The performance of the ST scheme is evaluated and compared with a scenario without such trading. Our results show that the proposed ST scheme is effective in improving the QoS of each VON and significantly improves the overall network capacity utilization.


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