Opportunistic cooperative networking: To relay or not to relay?

Xiaowen Gong, Chandrashekhar Thejaswi Ps, Junshan Zhang, H. Vincent Poor

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

40 Scopus citations


This paper considers opportunistic cooperative networking (OCN) in wireless ad hoc networks, with a focus on characterizing the desired tradeoff between the probing cost for establishing cooperative relaying and hence higher throughput via opportunistic cooperative networking. Specifically, opportunistic cooperative networking is treated as an optimal stopping problem with two-levels of incomplete information. Cases with or without dedicated relays are considered, and the existence of the optimal strategies for both cases are established. Then, it is shown that for the case with dedicated relays, the optimal strategy exhibits a threshold structure, in which it is optimal to probe the dedicated relay when the signal-to-noise ratio (SNR) of the source-relay link exceeds some threshold. For the case without dedicated relays, under more restrictive conditions, the optimal strategy is also threshold-based, in the sense that it is optimal to probe potential relays when the SNR of the source-destination link lies between two thresholds. Furthermore, these strategies can be implemented in a distributed manner.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number6136814
Pages (from-to)307-314
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications
Issue number2
StatePublished - Feb 2012

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


  • Ad hoc networks
  • cooperative relaying
  • distributed opportunistic scheduling
  • optimal stopping


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