Conference paper Open Access

A Service-based model for the Hybrid Software Defined Wireless Mesh Backhaul of Small Cells

Núñez-Martínez, José; Baranda, Jorge; Mangues-Bafalluy, Josep

The backhaul of upcoming dense 5G Small Cell (SC) networks needs a full redesign, but there is no clear consensus on how to deploy such infrastructure. A low-cost backhaul solution is that provided by a wireless mesh network. Additionally, Software Defined Networking (SDN) is being considered as an alternative to distributed approaches to lower network infrastructure costs while enabling programmability and flexibility mostly for wired networks. This paper evolves the canonical SDN model by presenting a service-based hybrid SDN (hSDN) model that alleviates the problems caused by the unreliability of the in-band control channel formed by a wireless mesh backhaul between the SDN controller and the SCs. At the infrastructure level, we propose a wireless mesh backhaul combining sub-6GHz and millimeter wave links with long range microwave links. This architecture pursues the coexistence of network services located on top of a centralized SDN controller, with distributed network services, such as routing. To show the robustness of our proposed model, we compare a service-based hSDN model and a canonical SDN model under perfect control plane communication channel. In our service-based hSDN model, we further compare two distributed routing schemes used as fallback control plane mechanisms when the SDN controller is unreachable. Simulation results with ns-3 show improvements of up to 1.5x and 6x in terms of throughput and latency, respectively.

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