Packet-wise vertical handover for unlicensed multi-standard spectrum access with cognitive radios

Jonathan Gambini, Osvaldo Simeone, Yeheskel Bar-Ness, Umberto Spagnolini, Takki Yu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

35 Scopus citations


In this letter, packet-by-packet vertical handover is investigated as a means to improve the performance of unlicensed spectrum access. The analysis focuses on the optimization of a channel access strategy for a cognitive multi-standard radio node that has the capability to switch between two orthogonal uplink radio interfaces, based on long-term channel state information. The radio interfaces differ for coverage and Quality of Service (QoS) requirements of primary users. The proposed strategy prescribes a cross-layer selection of physical-layer (transmitting powers) and medium access control layer (handover probability) parameters and is designed to maximize secondary throughput while guaranteeing the primary QoS constraints. Analysis and numerical results bring insight into the impact of network topology, measurement errors and primary QoS constraints on the optimal system design and corresponding performance.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number4723320
Pages (from-to)5172-5176
Number of pages5
JournalIEEE Transactions on Wireless Communications
Issue number12
StatePublished - Dec 2008

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

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


  • Cognitive radio
  • Systems of interacting queues
  • Unlicensed spectrum access
  • Vertical handover


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