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Sensors 2015, 15(4), 7658-7690; doi:10.3390/s150407658

PAD-MAC: Primary User Activity-Aware Distributed MAC for Multi-Channel Cognitive Radio Networks

Department of Electronics and Radio Engineering, College of Electronics and Information, Kyung Hee University, Deogyeong-daero, Giheung-gu, Yongin-si, Gyeonggi-do 446-701, Suwon, Korea
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Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Leonhard M. Reindl
Received: 30 December 2014 / Revised: 17 March 2015 / Accepted: 18 March 2015 / Published: 30 March 2015
(This article belongs to the Section Sensor Networks)
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Abstract

Cognitive radio (CR) has emerged as a promising technology to solve problems related to spectrum scarcity and provides a ubiquitous wireless access environment. CR-enabled secondary users (SUs) exploit spectrum white spaces opportunistically and immediately vacate the acquired licensed channels as primary users (PUs) arrive. Accessing the licensed channels without the prior knowledge of PU traffic patterns causes severe throughput degradation due to excessive channel switching and PU-to-SU collisions. Therefore, it is significantly important to design a PU activity-aware medium access control (MAC) protocol for cognitive radio networks (CRNs). In this paper, we first propose a licensed channel usage pattern identification scheme, based on a two-state Markov model, and then estimate the future idle slots using previous observations of the channels. Furthermore, based on these past observations, we compute the rank of each available licensed channel that gives SU transmission success assessment during the estimated idle slot. Secondly, we propose a PU activity-aware distributed MAC (PAD-MAC) protocol for heterogeneous multi-channel CRNs that selects the best channel for each SU to enhance its throughput. PAD-MAC controls SU activities by allowing them to exploit the licensed channels only for the duration of estimated idle slots and enables predictive and fast channel switching. To evaluate the performance of the proposed PAD-MAC, we compare it with the distributed QoS-aware MAC (QC-MAC) and listen-before-talk MAC schemes. Extensive numerical results show the significant improvements of the PAD-MAC in terms of the SU throughput, SU channel switching rate and PU-to-SU collision rate. View Full-Text
Keywords: primary user channel usage; traffic pattern analysis; multi-channel MAC; heterogeneous cognitive radio networks; channel selection; idle length estimation; predictive and fast channel switching; PHY-layer monitoring primary user channel usage; traffic pattern analysis; multi-channel MAC; heterogeneous cognitive radio networks; channel selection; idle length estimation; predictive and fast channel switching; PHY-layer monitoring
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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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MDPI and ACS Style

Ali, A.; Piran, M.J.; Kim, H.; Yun, J.; Suh, D.Y. PAD-MAC: Primary User Activity-Aware Distributed MAC for Multi-Channel Cognitive Radio Networks. Sensors 2015, 15, 7658-7690.

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