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In this paper, we develop a centralized spectrum sensing and Dynamic Spectrum Access (DSA) scheme for secondary users (SUs) in a Cognitive Radio (CR) network. Assuming that the primary channel occupancy follows a Markovian evolution, the channel sensing problem is modeled as a Partially Observable Markov Decision Process (POMDP). We assume that each SU can sense only one channel at a time by using energy detection, and the sensing outcomes are then reported to a central unit, called the secondary system decision center (SSDC), that determines the channel sensing/accessing policies. We derive both the optimal channel assignment policy for secondary users to sense the primary channels, and the optimal channel access rule. Our proposed optimal sensing and accessing policies alleviate many shortcomings and limitations of existing proposals: (a) ours allows fully utilizing all available primary spectrum white spaces, (b) our model, and thus the proposed solution, exploits the temporal and spatial diversity across different primary channels, and (c) is based on realistic local sensing decisions rather than complete knowledge of primary signalling structure. As an alternative to the high complexity of the optimal channel sensing policy, a suboptimal sensing policy is obtained by using the Hungarian algorithm iteratively, which reduces the complexity of the channel assignment from an exponential to a polynomial order. We also propose a heuristic algorithm that reduces the complexity of the sensing policy further to a linear order. The simulation results show that the proposed algorithms achieve a near-optimal performance with a significant reduction in computational time.
Date of Conference: 15-18 May 2011