Performance Analysis of Integrated Sub-6 GHz-Millimeter Wave Wireless Local Area Networks

Publication Type:

Conference Paper


IEEE Global Communications Conference, Singapore (2017)


Millimeter wave (mmW) communications at the 60 GHz unlicensed band is seen as a promising approach for boosting the capacity of wireless local area networks (WLANs). If properly integrated into legacy IEEE 802.11 standards, mmW communications can offer substantial gains by offloading traffic from congested sub-6 GHz unlicensed bands to the 60 GHz mmW frequency band. In this paper, a novel medium access control (MAC) is proposed to dynamically manage the WLAN traffic over the unlicensed mmW and sub-6 GHz bands. The proposed protocol leverages the capability of advanced multiband wireless stations (STAs) to perform fast session transfers (FST) to the mmW band, while considering the intermittent channel at the 60 GHz band and the level of congestion observed over the sub-6 GHz bands. The performance of the proposed scheme is analytically studied via a new Markov chain model and the probability of transmissions over the mmW and sub-6 GHz bands, as well as the aggregated saturation throughput are derived. In addition, analytical results are validated by simulation results. Simulation results show that the proposed integrated mmW-sub 6 GHz MAC protocol yields significant performance gains, in terms of maximizing the saturation throughput and minimizing the delay experienced by the STAs. The results also shed light on the tradeoffs between the achievable gains and the overhead introduced by the FST procedure.

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