Open Access Research

4-ary network coding for two nodes in cooperative wireless networks: exact outage probability and coverage expansion

Jin-Taek Seong and Heung-No Lee*

Author Affiliations

School of Information and Communications, Gwangju Institute of Science and Technology (GIST), Gwangju, South Korea

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EURASIP Journal on Wireless Communications and Networking 2012, 2012:366  doi:10.1186/1687-1499-2012-366

Published: 22 December 2012

Abstract

The fact that sensor nodes are powered by limited-capacity batteries makes power efficiency; one of the most critical issues in wireless sensor networks (WSNs). Advanced communication techniques combined with network coding and cooperative schemes have attracted considerable attention as ways to improve power efficiency in wireless transmission as well as to achieve high throughput and spectral efficiency in WSNs. In this study, we consider cooperative wireless networks with two nodes and one base station, and investigate the effect of using non-binary network coding on the enhancement in power efficiency. First, we derive the exact and general outage probability in our network coding scheme. We show that full diversity order can be obtained using a non-binary network code with GF(4) in the considered network. We use this result to study the extent to which the coverage area of a wireless source node can be expanded by network coding without increasing transmit power. Our results indicate that the benefit in terms of coverage expansion is substantial. The results included in this study show the influence of optimal power allocation on power efficiency. The optimum ratio of power allocation varies according to the wireless channel environments and the field size of network codes.

Keywords:
Wireless sensor network; Outage probability; Non-binary network coding; Cooperative network; Power efficiency; Coverage expansion; Power allocation