A Software Defined Framework for Opportunistic Networking and Spectrum Management

ECE Prof. Narayan Mandayam and Ivan Seskar of WINLAB have received a grant from ONR entitled "A Software Defined Framework for Opportunistic Networking and Spectrum Management".

This is a $ 1M grant for 3 years (joint with Naval Research Laboratories, Rutgers share of funding is $790K).

The abstract is given below.

Abstract: Opportunistic transmission using non-contiguous chunks of spectrum is of emerging interest not only in tactical networking scenarios but also due to the increasing push towards coexistence and spectrum sharing between DoD and commercial systems. The last decade has seen the advent of software defined radio (SDR) based cognitive radios that have the ability to recognize signals received by them and adjust their own transmission frequencies, waveforms and protocols. In a network setting, along with cooperative techniques they hold the promise of promoting opportunistic operation that is required in tactical wireless networks and can provide performance gains using approaches such as collaborative signal processing, cooperative coding, relaying and forwarding. More recently, the paradigm of software defined networking networking (SDN) has emerged as a means to flexibly engineer networks by decoupling the functionality of the control plane and the data plane. In this project, we propose to combine SDR and SDN technologies to develop a comprehensive software defined framework for opportunistic networking and spectrum management. Such a framework will allow radios (and systems) in a tactical environment to dynamically and opportunistically transmit in non-contiguous portions of spectrum, provide robustness against radio channel variations due to both electromagnetic propagation and interference, as well as adversarial conditions such as attacks. The mechanisms developed under the above framework will fundamentally rely on the ability of SDR based cognitive radios in the network to execute non-contiguous multicarrier modulation and use non-contiguous Orthogonal Frequency Division Multiple Access (NC-OFDMA) where by non-contiguous subcarriers can be flexibly assigned across nodes. An accompanying SDN based control plane architecture will be designed for implementing such opportunistic spectrum sharing mechanisms in networks such as those relevant to the Navy.