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Design and Implementation of an Enhanced 802.11 MAC Architecture for Single-Hop Wireless Networks


Due to its extreme simplicity and flexibility, the IEEE 802.11 standard is the dominant technology to implement both infrastructure-based WLANs and single-hop ad hoc networks. In spite of its popularity, there is a vast literature demonstrating the shortcomings of using the 802.11 technology in such environments, such as dramatic degradation of network capacity as contention increases and vulnerability to external interferences. Therefore, the design of enhancements and optimizations for the original 802.11 MAC protocol has been a very active research area in the last years. However, all these modifications to the 802.11 MAC protocol were validated only through simulations and/or analytical investigations. In this paper, we present a very unique work as we have designed a flexible hardware/software platform, fully compatible with current implementations of the IEEE 802.11 technology, which we have used to concretely implement and test an enhanced 802.11 backoff algorithm. Our experimental results clearly show that the enhanced mechanism outperforms the standard 802.11 MAC protocol in real scenarios.



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Correspondence to Ralph Bernasconi.

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Bernasconi, R., Giordano, S., Puiatti, A. et al. Design and Implementation of an Enhanced 802.11 MAC Architecture for Single-Hop Wireless Networks. J Wireless Com Network 2007, 028315 (2007).

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  • Wireless Network
  • Research Area
  • System Application
  • Analytical Investigation
  • Current Implementation