Collaborative Research: WiFiUS:
Heterogeneous Resource Allocation for Hierarchical Software-Defined Radio Access Networks at the Edge

Reference #: CNS 1457262
Sponsor: NSF NeTS
PIs: Guoliang Xue (1457262)
Duration: 03/15/2015 - 03/31/2017

Project Description: Wireless cellular infrastructure is becoming dense and heterogeneous. Software-defined networking (SDN) has brought new opportunities for enhancing network planning and administration. When applied in geographically large-scale radio access networks (RANs), SDN suffers from the intrinsic scalability and survivability problems due to high centralization. In this project, a hierarchical software-defined radio access network (HSDRAN) architecture is designed. In contrast to a flat version of software defined RAN which has large control overhead and system latency for large scaled networks, the proposed HSDRAN has reduced control overhead and system latency via the exploration of locality, and thereby enhances system scalability. In addition, the tree structure of the HSDRAN can easily deal with single point of failure. The plan is to first investigate the architecture design of the HSDRAN, the protocol design for the control network, survivability, and locality and optimization, and then large-scale elastic approaches, machine learning based approaches, and matching theory based approaches are proposed for network-wide resource allocation strategies. The intellectual merit originates from the interdisciplinary incorporation of different technologies including software-defined networking, wireless communications, software-defined radio, machine learning, and game theory. It addresses challenging issues of coexistence of interfering clusters and elastic resource allocation for a large-scale RAN, and proposing theoretically novel frameworks to tackle these challenges. This research will lead to simpler and more efficient resource allocation schemes for wireless networks by exploring the power of SDN. The transformative and interdisciplinary project involves a complementary mix of network architecture design, theoretical modeling and analysis, and experimental simulations quantifying performance benefits.

The outcomes will be made available to the research community through high quality journal articles and conference presentations which may be used by industries for network development and impact future industrial standardizations. This project will strengthen collaboration in the research field of wireless communication between the United States and Finland/Europe. The proposed research activities will complement and enrich the growing curriculum on game theory and optimization at the University of Houston and Arizona State University through course development and special topic seminars. Highly skilled personnel in related areas will be trained in carrying out the proposed research tasks. Special efforts will be made to engage minority and underrepresented groups. African-American, Hispanic and female graduate students will be involved in the project. The K-12 Outreach Programs will also be participated to inspire the interests of high school students in science and engineering.