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We have recently introduced a hierarchical structure for ad hoc wireless networks that classifies nodes into two categories: backbone capable nodes (BCNs) and regular nodes (RNs). BNCs are better equipped, have higher capacities, and have the ability to operate at multiple power levels and employ multiple radio modules. Under our protocol, identified as TBONE, when a BCN is elected to function as a backbone node (BN), it uses its high power link to communicate with other BNs, thus forming a backbone network (Bnet). To access the network, each RN or BCN must associate itself with a nearby BN (if any). The BN manages transmissions across its access network (Anet), whereby messages are transmitted to/from the BN and among Anet members at lower power levels. Our protocol dynamically initiates and maintains the configuration and association functions of such a mobile backbone network (MBN) under nodal mobility, topological changes and traffic flow variations. We further employ unmanned vehicles (UVs) to aid in maintaining the connectivity of the MBN as well as to upgrade the network capacity when required to sustain real-time and messaging flows that demand quality-of-service (QoS) performance assurance. In this paper, we present the performance features of this protocol, evaluating the number of nodes that are activated as BNs, characterizing the extent to which the system covers its client mobile station using its prescribed BCNs, and presenting the rate of various protocol interactions as a function of the mobility speed of nodal users. We also evaluate the impact of employed UVs on the system's connectivity and coverage features.
Wireless Communications and Networking, 2003. WCNC 2003. 2003 IEEE (Volume:3 )
Date of Conference: 20-20 March 2003