Skip to Main Content
There is a growing interest in energy efficient or so-called "green" wireless communication to reduce the energy consumption in cellular networks. Since today's wireless terminals are typically equipped with multiple network access interfaces such as Bluetooth, Wi-Fi, and cellular networks, this paper investigates user terminals cooperating with each other in transmitting their data packets to the base station (BS), by exploiting the multiple network access interfaces, called inter-network cooperation. We also examine the conventional schemes without user cooperation and with intra-network cooperation for comparison. Given target outage probability and data rate requirements, we analyze the energy consumption of conventional schemes as compared to the proposed inter-network cooperation by taking into account both physical-layer channel impairments and upper-layer protocol overheads. It is shown that distances between different network entities (i.e., user terminals and BS) have a significant influence on the energy efficiency of proposed inter-network cooperation scheme. Specifically, when the cooperating users are close to BS or the users are far away from each other, the inter-network cooperation may consume more energy than conventional schemes without user cooperation or with intra-network cooperation. However, as the cooperating users move away from BS and the inter-user distance is not too large, the inter-network cooperation significantly reduces the energy consumption over conventional schemes.