Toward Understanding of Metastability in Cellular Networks: Emergence and Implications for Performance

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Executive Summary

The authors investigate the meta-stable behavior in a model of a cellular network with multiple service classes. While the Markov model provides an accurate "Microscopic" model of the network behavior, the dimension of this model grows exponentially with the number of cells precluding solution of the corresponding Kolmogorov equations. Dimension of the mean field approximation model grows only linearly with the number of cells making this approximation computationally tractable. Through numerical analysis they show that the equilibrium manifold of the mean-field model develops "Folds" under increasing network load which give rise to multiple stable equilibria.

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