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Resource allocation for network-controlled device-to-device communications in LTE-Advanced


Network-controlled device-to-device (D2D) communication allows cellular users to communicate directly, i.e., without passing through the eNodeB, while the latter retains control over resource allocation. This allows the same time–frequency resources to be allocated to spatially separated D2D flows simultaneously, thus increasing the cell throughput. This paper presents a framework for: (1) selecting which communications should use the D2D mode, and when, and (2) allocating resources to D2D and non-D2D users, exploiting reuse for the former. We show that the two problems, although apparently similar, should be kept separate and solved at different timescales in order to avoid problems, such as excessive packet loss. We model both as optimization problems, and propose a heuristic solution to the second, which must be solved at millisecond timescales. Simulation results show that our framework is practically viable, it avoids the problem of packet losses, increases throughput and reduces delays.

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    The means by which this is achieved are outside the scope of this paper. However, for the sake of concreteness, we mention that the eNB may request D2D-eligible receivers to measure and report certain signals produced by the related transmitter, e.g. as proposed in [14].

  2. 2.

    Note that PS on the DL subframe is unaffected by our framework, hence is not mentioned further in the paper.


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The subject matter of this paper includes description of results of a joint research project carried out by Telecom Italia and the University of Pisa. Telecom Italia reserves all proprietary rights in any process, procedure, algorithm, article of manufacture, or other result of said project herein described. The authors wish to thank Andrea Rossali, formerly MSc student at the University of Pisa, for his contributions to the code.

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Correspondence to G. Stea.

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Nardini, G., Stea, G., Virdis, A. et al. Resource allocation for network-controlled device-to-device communications in LTE-Advanced. Wireless Netw 23, 787–804 (2017).

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  • LTE-Advanced
  • Device-to-device
  • Resource allocation
  • Optimization