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Multicast data communication is an efficient communication scheme, especially in multi-hop ad hoc networks where the media access control (MAC) layer is based on one-hop broadcast from one source to multiple receivers. Compared to unicast, multicast over a wireless channel should be able to deal with varying channel conditions of multiple users and user mobility to provide good quality to all users. IEEE 802.11 does not support reliable multicast owing to its inability to exchange request-to-send/clear-to-send and acknowledgement packets with multiple recipients. Thus, several MAC layer protocols have been proposed to provide reliable multicast. However, additional overhead is introduced, as a result, which degrades the system performance. In this paper, we propose an efficient wireless multicast MAC protocol with small control overhead required for reliable multicast in multi-hop wireless ad hoc networks. We present analytical formulations of the system throughput and delay associated with the overhead.
Date of Publication: Feb. 2012