Millimeter Wave Networking Challenges
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State-of-the-art wireless communication already operates close to Shannon capacity and one of the most promising options to further increase data rates is to increase the communication bandwidth. Very high bandwidth channels are only available in the extremely high frequency part of the radio spectrum, the millimeter wave band (mm-wave). Upcoming communication technologies, such as IEEE 802.11ad, are already starting to exploit this part of the radio spectrum to achieve data rates of several GBit/s. However, communication at such high frequencies also suffers from high attenuation and signal absorption, often restricting communication to line-of-sight (LOS) scenarios and requiring the use of highly directional antennas. This in turn requires a radical rethinking of wireless network design. On the one hand side, such channels experience little interference, allowing for a high degree of spatial reuse and potentially simpler MAC and interference management mechanisms. On the other hand, such an environment is extremely dynamic and channels may appear and disappear over very short time intervals, in particular for mobile devices. It is essential to take these characteristics into account to turn a collection of such very high speed but brittle links into an efficient, low latency, and reliable network. This talk will highlight some of the challenges of and possible approaches for mm-wave networking.