Date of Award


Degree Type


Degree Name

Master of Engineering Science


Electrical and Computer Engineering


Dr. Abdallah Shami


Wireless Local Area Networks (WLANs) now provide connectivity to many businesses, homes and educational institutions. The wireless channel itself is plagued with numerous problems, such as it does not natively allow sharing of the wireless resource. WLAN devices utilize a complex medium access control (MAC) mechanism to allow multiple users to share the wireless resource. The distributed coordination function (DCF) is the most commonly used multiple access scheme in WLANs and a member of the 802.11 standard [1]. In this thesis, two major roles of MAC protocols are examined: maximizing network throughput and service differentiation. Firstly, a novel MAC scheme is proposed that makes use of Multiple-Input, Multiple-Output (MIMO) antenna technology to improve overall network throughput. The proposed MIMO-Aware MAC (MA-MAC) scheme utilizes the beamforming feature available in MIMO systems to allow two simultaneous transmissions of the wireless channel overlapped in time. This results in increased aggregate network throughput. This proposed scheme is shown to offer better throughput and delay performance versus existing MAC schemes proposed for simultaneous transmission. In addition, this MAC scheme is able to achieve this performance in a manner compatible with the existing standard. The latter part of this thesis proposes a new Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) based scheme for providing video, voice and data services (also known as the Triple-Play services) in a point-to-multipoint network. By dynamically allocating transmission slots, the proposed Television TDMA (TV-TDMA) scheme is shown to better meet delay requirements for video and voice traffic, and is able to achieve higher overall saturation throughput for best-effort traffic than existing Quality of Service enabled protocols.



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