The mission of the SARL is to employ multiple antennas in radio transmissions to enhance the performance of wireless networks. For example, it considers how separate, inexpensive radios, each with just one antenna, can work together to form a “virtual array” that achieves the same benefits afforded by an expensive, real array; these benefits include longer transmission range, higher data rates, and increased reliability. SARL is especially interested in how multiple-antenna solutions can be best employed within a network, not just in an isolated link. SARL investigates routing and medium access control (MAC) protocols that exploit multiple antennas in innovative ways, for instance, using range extension to enable decades-long, maintenance-free lifetimes for sensor networks, and to use multiple-input-multiple-output (MIMO) spatial multiplexing to improve the throughput of ad hoc and mesh networks. SARL strives for a balance of theoretical and experimental research; it values practical solutions in real environments, and builds and tests prototypes. It has recently developed a 20-node ad hoc network of software-defined radios (SDRs), and it is using this network to test its latest distributed MIMO-based routing protocols.
Last revised on August 9, 2010.