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Cross-layer Design and SDR Implementation of DSA, Backpressure Routing and Network Coding

by   Sohraab Soltani, et al.
Virginia Polytechnic Institute and State University

A cross-layer cognitive radio system is designed to support unicast and multicast traffic with integration of dynamic spectrum access (DSA), backpressure algorithm, and network coding for multi-hop networking. The full protocol stack that operates with distributed coordination and local information exchange is implemented with software-defined radios (SDRs) and assessed in a realistic test and evaluation (T&E) system based on a network emulation testbed. Without a common control channel, each SDR performs neighborhood discovery, spectrum sensing and channel estimation, and executes a distributed extension of backpressure algorithm that optimizes the spectrum utility (that represents link rates and traffic congestion) with joint DSA and routing. The backpressure algorithm is extended to support multicast traffic with network coding deployed over virtual queues (for multicast destinations). In addition to full rank decoding at destinations, rank deficient decoding is also considered to reduce the delay. Cognitive network functionalities are programmed with GNU Radio and Python modules are developed for different layers. USRP radios are used as RF front ends. A wireless network T&E system is presented to execute emulation tests, where radios communicate with each other through a wireless network emulator that controls physical channels according to path loss, fading, and topology effects. Emulation tests are presented for different topologies to evaluate the throughput, backlog and energy consumption. Results verify the SDR implementation and the joint effect of DSA, backpressure routing and network coding under realistic channel and radio hardware effects.


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