Next-Generation Wireless Networks

Millimeter wave (mmWave) Networks form the central core of next-generation wireless networking including 5G and 6G cellular networks, 802.11 wireless LANs, and IoT networks. Millimeter wave, however, is fundamentally different from current wireless technologies in that it uses very narrow directional beams and operates at multi-Gbps data rates. As a result, mmWave systems face new challenges, in terms of mobility, medium access, and control overhead, which prevent them from scaling to mobile networks.

Our work addresses these problems by introducing protocols and algorithms that enable practical, agile, and mobile mmWave networks. First, we present Agile-Link, a sublinear time algorithm with provable guarantees for fast beam alignment and orders of magnitude improvement in establishing mmWave communication links in practice. Second, we extend the work to a network with many clients and APs to enable Many-to-Many beam alignment (BounceNet). We present a distributed protocol that allows a network of mmWave links to align their beams enabling extremely dense spatial reuse in millimeter wave networks where many links can communicate simultaneously at multi-Gbps without interfering to deliver practice to deliver 3.1x – 13.5x higher throughput in practice. Finally, instead of simply avoiding interference, in Nulli-Fi, we modify the beam pattern to suppress interference by creating nulls, i.e. directions in the beam pattern where almost no power is received. We present the first practical mmWave null steering system that uses a theoretically optimal algorithm that accounts for hardware limitations and imperfections to reduce interference by 100x and increase throughput by 2x.