Mobility

Random Access Heterogeneous MIMO Networks

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Executive Summary

This paper presents the design and implementation of 802.11n+, a fully distributed random access protocol for MIMO networks. 802.11n+ allows nodes that differ in the number of antennas to contend not just for time, but also for the degrees of freedom provided by multiple antennas. The authors show that even when the medium is already occupied by some nodes, nodes with more antennas can transmit concurrently without harming the ongoing transmissions. Furthermore, such nodes can contend for the medium in a fully distributed way. Their testbed evaluation shows that even for a small network with three competing node pairs, the resulting system about doubles the average network throughput. It also maintains the random access nature of today's 802.11n networks.

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