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In this paper, optimal multi-channel cooperative sensing strategies in cognitive radio networks are investigated. A cognitive radio network with multiple potential channels is considered. Secondary users cooperatively sense the channels and send the sensing results to a coordinator, in which energy detection with a soft decision rule is employed to estimate whether there are primary activities in the channels. An optimization problem is formulated, which maximizes the throughput of secondary users while keeping detection probability for each channel above a pre-defined threshold. In particular, two sensing modes are investigated: slotted-time sensing mode and continuous-time sensing mode.
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