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Relay Subset Selection in Wireless Networks Using Partial Decode-and-Forward Transmission October 7, 2009

Posted by flashbuzzer in Research.
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My third journal paper appeared in the IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology last February. You can find a pre-print on arXiv here.

Here are my thoughts on this paper’s strengths and weaknesses.

Strengths: In this paper, we used a simple theoretical model to obtain some practical insights. Specifically, we considered the relay selection problem given that all of the candidate relays employ a partial decode-and-forward strategy. Assuming that the network is static, we showed that the ergodic rate can be maximized by placing all of the candidate relays at a single point. This is intuitively satisfying, as intelligent node placement is essential when initially setting up a wireless network. Also, we were able to use neat mathematical tools such as diversity gain and generalized diversity gain to characterize the performance of relay selection under this partial decode-and-forward framework.

Weaknesses: Unfortunately, neat theoretical models cannot be used to explain all of the practical scenarios that can be realized. In particular, our model only considered the performance impact of path loss, and so lognormal shadowing was not taken into account. Placing a candidate relay node at the ergodic rate-maximizing point appears to be a good strategy, but what if a large building blocks the line-of-sight path between the candidate relay and the intended destination? Also, as far as I can tell, partial decode-and-forward is not employed in either the IEEE 802.16j or the 3GPP LTE-Advanced standards, which limits the practical scope of our work.

This was my second accepted IEEE journal paper, which was another important milestone in my graduate school career. I should also note that the review process for Trans VT is excellent; in particular, this paper was initially submitted in November 2007, and the final acceptance notice was issued in June 2008. This implies that authors seeking a fast turnaround time for their papers should consider submitting to Trans VT. Much of the credit for the smoothness of the review process should go to Weihua Zhuang, who is the Editor-in-Chief of the Transactions.


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