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A Layer 3 Movement Detection Algorithm Driving Handovers in Mobile IP


The evolution and the spreading of wireless access technology and the consequent increase of user mobility will make handover procedures critical for the provision of Quality of Service in the next generation wireless Internet. Often, layer 3 handovers are supposed to be driven by access layer procedures. In this way, the movement detection delay can be reduced, but at the expenses of making the Mobile IP protocol dependent of lower layer implementations. Furthermore, this approach may not be effective when users roam among heterogeneous networks. Nevertheless, movement detection algorithms, which operate at the Mobile IP layer, imply appreciable delays, usually intolerable for real time services.

In this paper, we propose a Mobile IP handover scheme based on a novel movement detection algorithm at layer 3, able to timely manage migrations by exploiting advertisements losses, combined with a two-timers mechanism.

We analyze the performance of our algorithm in terms of handover delay and throughput, and we show that our solution is able to decrease the movement detection delay as much as 47% with respect to other literature solutions that pursue similar approaches. In addition, this feature implies also higher values of the throughput seen by the TCP layer.

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Author information

Correspondence to M. Femminella.

Additional information

This work has been carried out in the framework of the FIRB Project PRIMO, co-financed by the Italian Ministry for Education, Higher Education and Research (MIUR).

Nicola Blefari Melazzi received his Laurea degree in Electrical Engineering in 1989, magna cum laude with publication of his thesis, and earned the “Dottore di Ricerca” (Ph.D.) in Information and Communication Engineering in 1994, both at the University of Roma “La Sapienza”, Italy. In 1993 he joined the University of Roma “Tor Vergata”, as an Assistant Professor. From 1998 to 2002 he has been an Associate Professor at the University of Perugia. In 2002 he came back to the University of Roma “Tor Vergata” as a Full Professor of Telecommunications.

Dr. Blefari-Melazzi has been involved in consulting activities and research projects, including standardization and performance evaluation work. His research projects have been funded by the Italian Ministry of Education, University and Research, by the Italian National Research Council, by industries, by the European Union and by the European Space Agency. He also reviewed research proposals and research projects.

Dr. Blefari-Melazzi served as reviewer, TPC member, session chair and guest-editor to IEEE conferences and journals.

His research interests include the performance evaluation, design and control of broadband integrated networks, wireless LANs and satellite networks. He is also conducting research on multimedia traffic modeling, mobile and personal communications, quality of service guarantees and real time services support in the Internet.

Mauro Femminella received his “Laurea” degree in Electronic Engineering in 1999, magna cum laude with publication of his thesis, and earned the Ph.D. degree in Electronic Engineering in 2003, both at the University of Perugia, Italy. He was Consulting Engineer for the University of Perugia, and for the consortia CoRiTel and RadioLabs. Actually he holds a position as contract researcher at the Department of Information and Electronic Engineering at the University of Perugia.

He was involved in a number of research projects co-funded by the European Union (programs ACTS and IST), by the Italian Ministry for Education, Higher Education and Research (MIUR), and by the European Space Agency (ESA).

He is co-author of a number of papers in international conferences and journals.

His research interests focus on design and performance evaluation of satellite networks, content delivery networks, IP quality of service and IP mobility.

Fabio Pugini received his laurea degree (M.S.) in Electronic Engineering (magna cum laude) in 2000 from University of Rome “La Sapienza”. He was with the INFOCOM Dept. of the same University during 2001 and 2002 as Ph.D. student in Computer Science. His main research interests regarded Mobility issues and QoS provision in IP networks. He was consulting engineer for the DIEI Department of the University of Perugia and was involved in the following European Projects: SUITED, WHYLESS.COM, FIFTH. In 2002 he received his M.B.A. degree from University of Rome “Tor Vergata”. He worked as a system analyst in MBDA Missile Defense Systems and currently he is with McKinsey & Company as a Junior Associate.

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Blefari-Melazzi, N., Femminella, M. & Pugini, F. A Layer 3 Movement Detection Algorithm Driving Handovers in Mobile IP. Wireless Netw 11, 223–233 (2005).

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  • Mobile IP handover
  • movement detection
  • overlapping coverage areas
  • cell switching