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In this paper, we consider power control as network layer problem in wireless mesh networks. The network connectivity between nodes is determined by their communication range which in turn can be controlled by adjusting the transmit power level. It is generally acknowledged that reducing transmit power levels of nodes to the minimum required to retain connectivity always increases network capacity. In this work, we show that though this is true for CSMA/CA based medium access, increasing power level of nodes can be beneficial in many cases when links are TDM-scheduled. Based on analysis and simulations, it is observed that increasing power levels of nodes (and decreasing number of hops in routing paths) results in increase of throughput in many representative traffic patterns and topologies. We characterize achievable spatial reuse and capacity with respect to power control in different topologies and traffic patterns. With increasing number of MAC protocols adopting TDMA approach, results presented here can be crucial in understanding how capacity is affected with varying levels of network connectivity.
Date of Conference: 5-9 June 2011