Cognitive radios (CRs) are emerging as a promising technology to enhance spectrum utilization through opportunistic on-demand access. Many MAC protocols for cognitive radio networks (CRNs) have been designed assuming multiple transceivers per CR user. However, in practice, such an assumption comes at the cost of extra hardware. In this paper, we address the problem of assigning channels to CR transmissions in single-hop and multi-hop CRNs, assuming one transceiver per CR. The primary goal of our design is to maximize the number of feasible concurrent CR transmissions, and conserve energy as a secondary objective, with respect to both spectrum assignment and transmission power subject to interference constraint and user rate demands. The problem is formulated under both binary-level and multi-level spectrum opportunity frameworks. Our formulation applies to any power-rate relationship. For single-hop CRNs, a centralized polynomial-time algorithm based on bipartite matching that computes the optimal channel assignment is developed. We then integrate this algorithm into distributed MAC protocols that preserve fairness. For multi-hop ad hoc CRNs, we propose a novel distributed MAC protocol (WFC-MAC) that attempts to maximize the CRN throughput, assuming single transceiver radios but with "dual-receive" capability. WFC-MAC uses a cooperative assignment that relies only on information provided by the two communicating users. The main novelty in WFC-MAC lies in requiring no active coordination with licensed users and exploiting the dual-receive capability of radios, thus alleviating various channel access problems that are common to multi-channel designs. We conduct theoretical analysis of our MAC protocols, and study their performance via simulations. The results indicate that compared with CSMA/CA variants, our protocols significantly decrease the blocking rate of CR transmissions, and hence improve network throughput.
- Bipartite matching
- Opportunistic access
ASJC Scopus subject areas
- Hardware and Architecture
- Computer Networks and Communications