CIF: Small: Massive Uncoordinated and Sporadic Multiple Access -- Strengthening Connections between Coding and Random Access
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The wireless landscape is poised to change, once again, within the next few years due to the emergence of machine-driven communications. This creates new challenges for wireless traffic, with packets originating from sporadic transmissions rather than sustained connections. Currently deployed scheduling policies are ill-equipped to deal with such traffic because they rely on gathering information about channel quality and queue length for every active device. The goal of this research initiative is to address this deficiency and devise novel access schemes tailored to massive uncoordinated and sporadic multiple access, thereby readying wireless infrastructures for the traffic of tomorrow. The broader impacts of this research program include providing pragmatic solutions to some of the challenges posed by an evolving wireless landscape, strengthening wireless infrastructures, and contributing to the training of a globally competitive Science, Technology, Engineering and Math workforce. The research tasks are attuned to societal needs in information technologies, an important economic driver for our nation. The wide dissemination of the findings will enhance the scientific understanding of wireless systems, access strategies, and iterative methods.The intellectual merit of this research initiative lies in exploiting the close connections between message-passing decoding and serial interference cancellation to create new access strategies. Linking advances in iterative methods to uncoordinated random access embodies the type of crosscutting research that can lead to disruptive technologies and paradigm shifts. This project embraces the evolving perspective of harnessing interference in wireless networks rather than fighting it or avoiding it. This viewpoint underlies many recent successes in network coding and distributed storage. This project brings forth such a perspective in the design of large-scale wireless networks.