RF-Spectrum Opportunities for Cognitive Radio Networks Operating Over GSM Channels

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15 Citations (Scopus)


In this paper, we characterize the radio frequency spectrum opportunities available in a common global system for mobile communications (GSM) channel to support the operation of a cognitive radio network (CRN). In a first step, we describe the technical details involved to sample the channel using a software defined radio device. Adopting a simple energy-based detector, we identify the two energy regions where the GSM system is active or inactive and evaluate the spectrum sensing accuracy. Based on the output of the detector, we show that the distribution of the durations of busy and idle periods are approximated by geometric distributions. Finally, we validate a theoretical model for the distribution of the service time. The validation results indicate that the service time can be successfully represented by a discrete generalized Pareto distribution, which is confirmed by the Kolmogorov-Smirnov test. Because the throughput of the CRN is represented by the inverse of the service time, the proposed analysis provides an upper bound for the networks' throughput, indicating the maximum throughput that can be attained when a single secondary user transmits over a GSM cellular channel. The results presented in this paper are validated with real data, confirming the accuracy of the proposed service time model.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)731-739
Number of pages9
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Dec 2017


  • Cognitive radio networks
  • service time
  • performance evaluation and modeling


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