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Efficient Routing in Intermittently Connected Mobile Networks: The Multiple-Copy Case

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3 Author(s)

Intermittently connected mobile networks are wireless networks where most of the time there does not exist a complete path from the source to the destination. There are many real networks that follow this model, for example, wildlife tracking sensor networks, military networks, vehicular ad hoc networks, etc. In this context, conventional routing schemes fail, because they try to establish complete end-to-end paths, before any data is sent. To deal with such networks researchers have suggested to use flooding-based routing schemes. While flooding-based schemes have a high probability of delivery, they waste a lot of energy and suffer from severe contention which can significantly degrade their performance. Furthermore, proposed efforts to reduce the overhead of flooding-based schemes have often been plagued by large delays. With this in mind, we introduce a new family of routing schemes that "spray" a few message copies into the network, and then route each copy independently towards the destination. We show that, if carefully designed, spray routing not only performs significantly fewer transmissions per message, but also has lower average delivery delays than existing schemes; furthermore, it is highly scalable and retains good performance under a large range of scenarios. Finally, we use our theoretical framework proposed in our 2004 paper to analyze the performance of spray routing. We also use this theory to show how to choose the number of copies to be sprayed and how to optimally distribute these copies to relays.

Published in:

IEEE/ACM Transactions on Networking  (Volume:16 ,  Issue: 1 )