Spectrum Slicing for Multiple Access Channels with Heterogeneous Services

Entropy (Basel). 2021 May 28;23(6):686. doi: 10.3390/e23060686.


Wireless mobile networks from the fifth generation (5G) and beyond serve as platforms for flexible support of heterogeneous traffic types with diverse performance requirements. In particular, the broadband services aim for the traditional rate optimization, while the time-sensitive services aim for the optimization of latency and reliability, and some novel metrics such as Age of Information (AoI). In such settings, the key question is the one of spectrum slicing: how these services share the same chunk of available spectrum while meeting the heterogeneous requirements. In this work we investigated the two canonical frameworks for spectrum sharing, Orthogonal Multiple Access (OMA) and Non-Orthogonal Multiple Access (NOMA), in a simple, but insightful setup with a single time-slotted shared frequency channel, involving one broadband user, aiming to maximize throughput and using packet-level coding to protect its transmissions from noise and interference, and several intermittent users, aiming to either to improve their latency-reliability performance or to minimize their AoI. We analytically assessed the performances of Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) and ALOHA-based schemes in both OMA and NOMA frameworks by deriving their Pareto regions and the corresponding optimal values of their parameters. Our results show that NOMA can outperform traditional OMA in latency-reliability oriented systems in most conditions, but OMA performs slightly better in age-oriented systems.

Keywords: Age of Information; Non-Orthogonal Multiple Access; heterogeneous access; reliability; slotted ALOHA.