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Foto: Judith Kraft Show image information

Foto: Judith Kraft


Wireless transmissions are inherently errror-prone due to the random characteristics of the fading channel. If an erroneous packet cannot be repaired, e.g., by using forward error correction (FEC), it must be retransmitted. Unfortunately, retransmission is infeasible for real-time voice and video streams due to their strict time constraints.

Recently, cooperative diversity techniques were proposed [3-6] to make wireless transmissions more robust. In a multiuser scenario, every packet transmitted from a source (A) to a destination (D) can be overheard by other users nearby (B). These nearby users can provide the destination with additional information obtained from the overheard packet. With this additional information provided by cooperating users or partners, the destination may be able to decode a destroyed packet that would have to be retransmitted otherwise. Thus, cooperation exploits multiuser diversity.


  • Cooperative multiple access -- Conventional approaches prevent interference caused by hidden users through collision avoidance with RTS/CTS. Exploiting additional stations as cooperation partners leads to further hidden users. If these terminals do not refrain from transmissions, they may cause interference at cooperation partners. Cooperative multiple access schemes must provide means to avoid this interference.
  • Multi-hop routing -- In wireless ad hoc networks, transmissions may involve several hops. The impact of cooperation, e.g., partner selection, on conventional routing protocols must be studied. Two fundamental approaches exist that may or may not exploit cooperation-specific information at the network layer. Both approaches must be investigated and compared with each other.

The new cooperative communication protocol will be prototyped on the Sorbas 101 software-defined radio testbed, which has already been used to prototype IEEE 802.11a extensions. 


  • S. Valentin, H. v. Malm, H. Karl: "Traffic aware asymmetric coopertaion diversity for media streaming in wireless networks" , in Proc. 18th Annual IEEE International Symposium on Personal, Indoor and Mobile Radio Communications (PIMRC), Sep. 2007. (pdf)
  • S. Valentin, H. Karl, I. Aad: "Transceiver apparatus for cooperative wireless network", Patents EP1962456, JP2008228289, filed by NTT DoCoMo Inc., Feb. 21th 2007. (Patent database)
  • A. Sendonaris, E. Erkip, B. Aazhang: "User cooperation diversity. Part I. System description," IEEE Transactions on Communications, vol. 51, no. 11, Nov. 2003.
  • A. Sendonaris, E. Erkip, B. Aazhang: "User cooperation diversity. Part II. Implementation aspects and performance analysis," IEEE Transactions on Communications, vol. 51, no. 11, Nov. 2003.
  • J. N. Laneman, G. W. Wornell, D. N. C. Tse: "An efficient protocol for realizing cooperative diversity in wireless networks," in Proc. of IEEE International Symposium on Information Theory (ISIT), June 2001.
  • T. E. Hunter, A. Nosratinia: "Cooperation diversity through coding," in Proc. of IEEE International Symposium on Information Theory (ISIT), July 2002.


Information about the project:     
Project members:Holger Karl
Hermann S. Lichte
Stefan Valentin
Project website:
Type:Industry Research
Started:September 2006
Finished:December 2009
Contact:Holger Karl

The University for the Information Society