Advances in Vehicular Ad-Hoc Networks: Developments and Challenges

Advances in Vehicular Ad-Hoc Networks: Developments and Challenges

Mohamed Watfa (University of Wollongong, UAE)
Indexed In: SCOPUS
Release Date: May, 2010|Copyright: © 2010 |Pages: 384
ISBN13: 9781615209132|ISBN10: 1615209131|EISBN13: 9781615209149|DOI: 10.4018/978-1-61520-913-2


A Vehicular Ad Hoc Network (VANET) is a non-infrastructure based network that does not rely on a central administration for communication between vehicles. The flexibility of VANETs opens the door to a myriad of applications; however, there are also a number of computer communication challenges that await researchers and engineers who are serious about their implementation and deployment.

Advances in Vehicular Ad-Hoc Networks: Developments and Challenges tackles the prevalent research challenges that hinder a fully deployable vehicular network. This unique reference presents a unified treatment of the various aspects of VANETs and is essential for not only university professors, but also for researchers working in the automobile industry.

Topics Covered

The many academic areas covered in this publication include, but are not limited to:

  • Architecture of vehicular ad hoc networks
  • Communication technologies in vehicular applications
  • Cooperative collision avoidance
  • Geographic routing in vehicular ad hoc networks
  • IEEE 802.11g and IEEE 802.16e technologies
  • Information sharing in VANETs
  • Infrastructures in vehicular communications
  • Mobility and traffic model analysis
  • Opportunistic networking
  • Routing protocols in vehicular ad hoc networks

Table of Contents and List of Contributors

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A Vehicular Ad Hoc Network (VANET) is a non-infrastructure based network that does not rely on a central administration for communication between vehicles. In a Vehicular Ad Hoc Network, the overlapping transmission range of each vehicle ensures a unified and common channel for communication between the vehicles. The flexibility of VANETs opens the door to a myriad of applications that contribute to the safety and comfort of the vehicle’s passengers. Unfortunately, this versatility does not come for free: there are a large number of computer communication challenges that await researchers and engineers who are serious about the implementation and deployment of Vehicular Ad Hoc Networks. Throughout the world, there are many national/international projects in government, industry, and academia devoted to vehicular networks. VANETs represent a rapidly emerging, particularly challenging class of Mobile Ad Hoc Network (MANET). They are distributed, self-organizing communication networks built up by moving vehicles, and are thus characterized by very high node mobility and limited degrees of freedom in mobility patterns. Such particular features often make standard networking protocols inefficient or unusable, hence the growing effort in the development of communication protocols which are specific to vehicular networks. Early VANET researchers, who had extensive research experience in MANETs, were very optimistic. They thought that MANETs could be slightly modified and tailored to suit VANET architectures. Unfortunately, things did not turn out to their expectations. The high mobility of communicating vehicles necessitated that protocols be vastly revised or re-written from scratch.

A book about Vehicular Ad Hoc Networks is both timely and looked-for. In the last few years there has been an industrial aspiration to roll out VANETs. However, VANETs introduce a lot of challenges that only earnest academic and industrial research can overcome. A comprehensive and unified treatment of the intermingled aspects of VANETs in a book is required. The goal of this book is to explore the developments and current/future challenges in the area of vehicular networks. This book presents techniques and protocols that satisfy the peculiar needs of VANETs. It will tackle the Wireless Medium Access Control (WMAC) techniques that are common to all wireless communication systems and provide special treatment of the peculiar aspects of WMAC in VANETs. Proactive, reactive and location-aware routing techniques are also presented. The cross-layer dependencies in VANETs are discussed and ways in which their exploitation will eventually lead to the optimization of communication are shown. This book serves as a powerful reference and background in the area of VANETs by tackling the prevalent research challenges that hinder a fully deployable Vehicular network. It will be a pioneer reference in this field and will resonance sharply with researchers who have been craving a unified reference in the field of Inter-Vehicular communication.

The book is divided into four sections where each section groups several related VANETs research topics starting from a brief introduction to VANETs, to a list of possible applications of VANETS, to VANETs communication protocols, and finally concluding this book with general research problems of VANETs.

Section I: Introduction to Vehicular Adhoc Networks (VANETs)

The first part of the book, Introduction of Vehicular Adhoc Networks, presents introductory materials that are preparatory for what we describe in the rest of the book. It details the basic infrastructure and architecture of a vehicular Adhoc network and what are the possible challenges associated with such architecture.

The infrastructure of a vehicular Adhoc network plays a major role in order to realize the full potential of vehicular communications. The first chapter provides an in-depth survey of the infrastructures and technologies that were recently proposed as part of the future intelligent transportation system (ITS).

The second chapter deals with the basic architecture of VANET where both wired and wireless technologies can be used for intra-vehicular communication. It ultimately explains inter-vehicular communications and the components of a smart vehicle.

Section II: Applications of VANETs

The second part of the book, Applications of Vehicular Adhoc Networks, presents different categories of vehicular network applications which will motivate researchers to pursue further research in the field by designing new protocols, technologies and implementations.

The third chapter provides an in depth analysis of application requirements taking into consideration the available technologies for physical/MAC and network layers.

The fourth chapter gives a background on different applications categories in VANETs that include safety, commercial, monitoring, service and entertainment applications.

The fifth chapter focuses on a possible application for data sharing between vehicular users highlighting the main challenges while introducing some mechanisms that can be applied to solve two major issues in content sharing: content query propagation and content caching.

Section III: Communication Protocols in VANETs

The third part of the book, Communication Protocols in VANETs, presents various data communication protocols used in vehicular networks that include medium access control protocols, different variations of routing protocols and wireless access techniques in vehicular environments.

Chapter 6, an overview of proposed MAC protocols for VANETs is presented and current standardization activities are described. The authors also review prominent existing analytical models and study their advantages, disadvantages and their suitability for performance evaluation of MAC protocols for VANETs.

IEEE 802.11 Standard has led to increased research in the areas of wireless ad hoc networks and location-based routing algorithms. Chapter seven analyzes two prominent technologies, IEEE 802.11g (WiFi) and IEEE 802.16e (WiMAX), for single-hop inter-vehicular communication (SIVC).

Despite many surveys already published on routing protocols in MANETs, a survey of newly developed routing protocols specific to VANETs has long been overdue. Chapter eight provides a survey of routing protocols in vehicular ad hoc networks highlighting the advantages and disadvantages of these routing protocols while exploring the motivation behind their design.

Chapter nine introduces geographic routing in vehicular ad hoc networks (VANETs).

Currently, there are five major types of VANETs routing protocols based on the metrics used for routing: 1) flooding based routing, 2) mobility based routing, 3) infrastructure based routing, 4) geographic position based routing, 5) probability model based routing. Chapter ten gives a survey of each type of routing method presenting probability model based routing as a detailed example.

Vehicular mobility is characterized by acceleration, deceleration, possibility of different lanes and intelligent driving patterns. Chapter 11 provides taxonomy of mobility models and an analysis of their implications.

Many of the applications in VANETs, especially the safety related ones, set up requirements for information dissemination which are different from conventional networks and are thus difficult to fulfill with existing strategies. Chapter 12 reviews recently proposed data dissemination schemes in VANETs and presents novel solutions and analytical evaluation tools.

Section IV: General Research Challenges in VANETs The fourth and last part of the book, General Research Challenges in VANETs, concludes this book by presenting some research challenges in vehicular networks such as clustering techniques, delay tolerant protocols, and adaptive solutions in Multihop VANETs.

Chapter 13, clustering algorithms, solutions appropriate to increase connectivity, and carious algorithms that can detect intruders in VANETs are presented.

Real-time traffic and route updates, traffic monitoring, remote diagnostics, general purpose Internet access and in-car entertainment are examples that require data collection and dissemination analogous to the wired Internet. However, related short-range communications technology would appear to be insufficient for these scenarios. Chapter 14, the conditions under which it is feasible to use short range communications are described.

The nature of VANETs demands a flexible multi-hop communication protocol supporting different communications needs and adapting to the network environment and to context elements specified by the application itself. Chapter 15 introduces the reader to these kinds of solutions, show their benefits and also mention the challenges involved.

Author(s)/Editor(s) Biography

Mohamed Khalil Watfa is currently in the college of Computer Science and Engineering at the University of Wollongong in Dubai. Before that he was at the Computer Science department at the American University of Beirut (AUB). He received his Ph.D. from the School of Electrical and Computer Engineering at the University of Oklahoma in Norman, OK, USA in 2006. He was one of the youngest PhD holders to graduate from his university at the age of 23. He has been given a number of prestigious awards including a recent Research Excellence Award in 2009. His research interests include wireless sensor networks, intelligent systems, Vehicular Ad-hoc Networks, wireless networking, resource management, energy issues, tracking, routing, and performance measures. He has more than 40 journal and conference publications. For more info about Prof. Watfa, check out his personal website at: