Fronthaul-Aware Software-Defined Wireless Networks: Resource Allocation and User Scheduling

Chen Feng Liu, Sumudu Samarakoon, Mehdi Bennis, H. Vincent Poor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

14 Scopus citations


Software-defined networking (SDN) provides an agile and programmable way to optimize radio access networks via a control-data plane separation. Nevertheless, reaping the benefits of wireless SDN hinges on making optimal use of the limited wireless fronthaul capacity. In this paper, the problem of fronthaul-aware resource allocation and user scheduling is studied. To this end, a two-timescale fronthaul-aware SDN control mechanism is proposed in which the controller maximizes the time-averaged network throughput by enforcing a coarse correlated equilibrium in the long timescale. Subsequently, leveraging the controller's recommendations, each base station schedules its users using Lyapunov stochastic optimization in the short timescale, i.e., at each time slot. Simulation results show that significant network throughput enhancements and up to 40% latency reduction are achieved with the aid of the SDN controller. Moreover, the gains are more pronounced for denser network deployments.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number8094947
Pages (from-to)533-547
Number of pages15
JournalIEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications
Issue number1
StatePublished - Jan 2018

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Science Applications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering
  • Applied Mathematics


  • 5G
  • Lyapunov optimization
  • coarse correlated equilibrium (CCE)
  • network utility maximization
  • software-defined networking (SDN)


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