Faculty Advisor

Fred J. Looft

Faculty Advisor

Robert E. Kinicki

Faculty Advisor

Kaveh Pahlavan

Faculty Advisor

Donald R. Brown

Faculty Advisor

Wenjing Lou


"Opportunistic routing (OR) takes advantages of the spatial diversity and broadcast nature of wireless networks to combat the time-varying links by involving multiple neighboring nodes (forwarding candidates) for each packet relay. This dissertation studies the properties, energy efficiency, capacity, throughput, protocol design and security issues about OR in multihop wireless networks. Firstly, we study geographic opportunistic routing (GOR), a variant of OR which makes use of nodes' location information. We identify and prove three important properties of GOR. The first one is on prioritizing the forwarding candidates according to their geographic advancements to the destination. The second one is on choosing the forwarding candidates based on their advancements and link qualities in order to maximize the expected packet advancement (EPA) with different number of forwarding candidates. The third one is on the concavity of the maximum EPA in respect to the number of forwarding candidates. We further propose a local metric, EPA per unit energy consumption, to tradeoff the routing performance and energy efficiency for GOR. Leveraging the proved properties of GOR, we propose two efficient algorithms to select and prioritize forwarding candidates to maximize the local metric. Secondly, capacity is a fundamental issue in multihop wireless networks. We propose a framework to compute the end-to-end throughput bound or capacity of OR in single/multirate systems given OR strategies (candidate selection and prioritization). Taking into account wireless interference and unique properties of OR, we propose a new method of constructing transmission conflict graphs, and we introduce the concept of concurrent transmission sets to allow the proper formulation of the maximum end-to-end throughput problem as a maximum-flow linear programming problem subject to the transmission conflict constraints. We also propose two OR metrics: expected medium time (EMT) and expected advancement rate (EAR), and the corresponding distributed and local rate and candidate set selection schemes, the Least Medium Time OR (LMTOR) and the Multirate Geographic OR (MGOR). We further extend our framework to compute the capacity of OR in multi-radio multi-channel systems with dynamic OR strategies. We study the necessary and sufficient conditions for the schedulability of a traffic demand vector associated with a transmitter to its forwarding candidates in a concurrent transmission set. We further propose an LP approach and a heuristic algorithm to obtain an opportunistic forwarding strategy scheduling that satisfies a traffic demand vector. Our methodology can be used to calculate the end-to-end throughput bound of OR in multi-radio/channel/rate multihop wireless networks, as well as to study the OR behaviors (such as candidate selection and prioritization) under different network configurations. Thirdly, protocol design of OR in a contention-based medium access environment is an important and challenging issue. In order to avoid duplication, we should ensure only the "best" receiver of each packet to forward it in an efficient way. We investigate the existing candidate coordination schemes and propose a "fast slotted acknowledgment" (FSA) to further improve the performance of OR by using a single ACK to coordinate the forwarding candidates with the help of the channel sensing technique. Furthermore, we study the throughput of GOR in multi-rate and single-rate systems. We introduce a framework to analyze the one-hop throughput of GOR, and provide a deeper insight on the trade-off between the benefit (packet advancement, bandwidth, and transmission reliability) and cost (medium time delay) associated with the node collaboration. We propose a local metric named expected one-hop throughput (EOT) to balance the benefit and cost. Finally, packet reception ratio (PRR) has been widely used as an indicator of the link quality in multihop wireless networks. Many routing protocols including OR in wireless networks depend on the PRR information to make routing decision. Providing accurate link quality measurement (LQM) is essential to ensure the right operation of these routing protocols. However, the existing LQM mechanisms are subject to malicious attacks, thus can not guarantee to provide correct link quality information. We analyze the security vulnerabilities in the existing link quality measurement (LQM) mechanisms and propose an efficient broadcast-based secure LQM (SLQM) mechanism, which prevents the malicious attackers from reporting a higher PRR than the actual one. We analyze the security strength and the cost of the proposed mechanism. "


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Degree Name



Electrical & Computer Engineering

Project Type


Date Accepted





opportunistic routing, security, energy efficiency, medium access control, capacity, throughput, Wireless LANS, Routers (Computer networks)