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Article

CR-LBT: Listen-before-Talk with Collision Resolution for 5G NR-U Networks

Loginov V., Khorov E., Lyakhov A., Akyildiz I.

To achieve higher throughputs in cellular networks, 3GPP proposes to use unlicensed frequency bands and develops technologies - the latest one is NR-U - allowing a cellular base station to transmit in unlicensed bands, which are already occupied by Wi-Fi networks. To enable fair channel sharing between two technologies, the base station uses a sort of CSMA/CA with binary exponential backoff similar to Wi-Fi. However, the base station can start data transmission only at strictly periodic time moments. Many papers propose sending a reservation signal between the end of the backoff procedure and such a moment to prevent nearby devices from accessing the channel. However, this approach significantly reduces Wi-Fi performance. The paper proposes a novel method CR-LBT of transmitting a reservation signal that greatly decreases channel resource waste caused by collisions and improves channel resource sharing fairness. With developed analytical models and simulations, it is shown that CR-LBT may simultaneously increase the throughput of both NR-U and Wi-Fi networks. The effect is more noticeable for the Wi-Fi network, the throughput of which may rise three times compared with the traditional method of sending the reservation signal. Finally, the influence of various factors on CR-LBT performance is studied.