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In a dynamic spectrum sharing system, a Cognitive Radio (CR) is provided with more channels than what it can use. So it is important for the CR to select the right channels for its transmission. To avoid interfering with incumbent primary radios, the existing schemes are based on channel sensing, which use the busy/idle status of a channel as the criterion to select channels. Such schemes in general do not provide good throughput performance for CRs. In this paper, the authors study a throughput-optimal joint sensing/probing scheme for CRs that uses the channel quality as a second criterion in selecting channels. The difficulty of this problem comes from the fact that a CR cannot first scan all channels and then pick the best one.
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