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Architecture and enablers for optimized radio resource usage in heterogeneous wireless access networks: The IEEE 1900.4 Working Group

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9 Author(s)

Over the past decade or so, the wireless industry has undergone many significant changes. Radio systems have moved toward forming heterogeneous wireless networks: collaborations of multiple radio access networks, which in some cases operate different radio access technologies, such as second- and third-generation cellular RATs, IEEE 802.x wireless standards, and so on. On the other hand, multimode reconfigurable user devices with the ability to choose among various supported RATs have become a reality, and devices and networks with dynamic spectrum access capabilities, allowing real-time sharing of spectrum resource usage among different systems, are expected to be a part of the future radio eco-space. As a result of these changes, there is a need to develop a standard that addresses the requirements and leverages the opportunities posed by such a versatile radio environment. To this end, IEEE 1900.4 aims to standardize the overall system architecture and information exchange between the network and mobile devices, which will allow these elements to optimally choose from available radio resources. In other words, the standard facilitates the distributed dynamic optimization of the usage of spectrum offered by the heterogeneous wireless network, relying on a collaborative information exchange between networks and mobile devices, thereby acting as a common means to improve overall composite capacity and quality of service for the served networks. This article provides a snapshot of IEEE P1900.4 in its current form, covering the scope and purpose of the standard, reference use cases for which the standard is applicable, its system and functional architectures, and finally, the information model for its main interfaces.

Published in:

Communications Magazine, IEEE  (Volume:47 ,  Issue: 1 )

Date of Publication:

January 2009

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