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Cognitive radio networks (CRNs) have the potential to utilize spectrum efficiently and are positioned to be the core technology for the next-generation multihop wireless networks. An important problem for such networks is its capacity. We study this problem for CRNs in the SINR (signal-to-interference-and-noise-ratio) model, which is considered to be a better characterization of interference (but also more difficult to analyze) than disk graph model. The main difficulties of this problem are two-fold. First, SINR is a nonconvex function of transmission powers; an optimization problem in the SINR model is usually a nonconvex program and NP-hard in general. Second, in the SINR model, scheduling feasibility and the maximum allowed flow rate on each link are determined by SINR at the physical layer. To maximize capacity, it is essential to follow a cross-layer approach, but joint optimization at physical (power control), link (scheduling), and network (flow routing) layers with the SINR function is inherently difficult. In this paper, we give a mathematical characterization of the joint relationship among these layers. We devise a solution procedure that provides a (1- varepsilon ) optimal solution to this complex problem, where varepsilon is the required accuracy. Our theoretical result offers a performance benchmark for any other algorithms developed for practical implementation. Using numerical results, we demonstrate the efficacy of the solution procedure and offer quantitative understanding on the interaction of power control, scheduling, and flow routing in a CRN.
Date of Publication: July 2011