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Transmission power control (TPC) has great potential to increase the throughput of a mobile ad hoc network (MANET). Existing TPC schemes achieve this goal by using additional hardware (e.g., multiple transceivers), by compromising the collision avoidance property of the channel access scheme, by making impractical assumptions on the operation of the medium access control (MAC) protocol, or by overlooking the protection of link-layer acknowledgment packets. In this paper, we present a novel power controlled MAC protocol called POWMAC, which enjoys the same single-channel, single-transceiver design of the IEEE 802.11 ad hoc MAC protocol but which achieves a significant throughput improvement over the 802.11 protocol. Instead of alternating between the transmission of control (RTS/CTS) and data packets, as done in the 802.11 scheme, POWMAC uses an access window (AW) to allow for a series of request-to-send/clear-to-send (RTS/CTS) exchanges to take place before several concurrent data packet transmissions can commence. The length of the AW is dynamically adjusted based on localized information to allow for multiple interference-limited concurrent transmissions to take place in the same vicinity of a receiving terminal. Collision avoidance information is inserted into the CTS packet and is used to bound/ the transmission power of potentially interfering terminals in the vicinity of the receiver, rather than silencing such terminals. Simulation results are used to demonstrate the significant throughput and energy gains that can be obtained under the POWMAC protocol.
Date of Publication: May 2005