Caching in the Sky: Proactive Deployment of Cache-Enabled Unmanned Aerial Vehicles for Optimized Quality-of-Experience

Publication Type:

Journal Article


IEEE JSAC Special Issue on Human-In-The-Loop Mobile Networks (Submitted)


In this paper, the problem of proactive deployment of cache-enabled unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) for optimizing the quality-of-experience (QoE) of wireless devices in a cloud radio access network (CRAN) is studied. In the considered model, the network can leverage human-centric information such as users’ visited locations, requested contents, gender, job, and device type to predict the content request distribution and mobility pattern of each user. Then, given these behavior predictions, the proposed approach seeks to find the user-UAV associations, the optimal UAVs’ locations, and the contents to cache at UAVs. This problem is formulated as an optimization problem whose goal is to maximize the users’ QoE while minimizing the transmit power used by the UAVs. To solve this problem, a novel algorithm based on the machine learning framework of conceptor-based echo state networks (ESNs) is proposed. Using ESNs, the network can effectively predict each user’s content request distribution and its mobility pattern when limited information on the states of users and the network is available. Based on the predictions of the users’ content request distribution and their mobility patterns, we derive the optimal locations of UAVs as well as the content to cache at UAVs. Simulation results using real pedestrian mobility patterns from BUPT and actual content transmission data from Youku show that the proposed algorithm can yield 33.3% and 59.6% gains, respectively, in terms of the average transmit power and the percentage of the users with satisfied QoE compared to a benchmark algorithm without caching and a benchmark solution without UAVs.

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