Scalability issues in ad-hoc networks: Metrical routing versus table-driven routing

Yosi Ben-Asher, Sharoni Feldman, Moran Feldman, Pini Gurfil

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


When studying scalability in ad-hoc networks, most works present experimental results for a limited number of nodes (100-200). Various "explicit" clustering techniques have been proposed to improve scalability, obtaining successful sessions for 400-800 nodes. However, explicit clustering may damage the performance, e.g., cause session breaks due to fast movements of cluster heads. An alternative to explicit clustering is the use of algorithms that are "naturally clustered", i.e., arrange the nodes in dynamic hierarchical structures. In this work, we study the effect of explicit clustering by comparing an advanced version of the Ad Hoc Distance Vector Algorithm (AODV) with the Metrical Routing Algorithm (MRA) that possesses the natural clustering property. We cover fundamental aspects of scalability and experimentally prove the superiority of implicit clustering over explicit clustering. In particular, we consider heterogeneous theaters with several types of transmitters including personal, car-mounted, helicopters and a Geostationary (GEO) satellite. Natural clustering is more effective in heterogeneous theaters as the more powerful transmitters can serve as cluster heads. A formal bound based on general probabilistic assumptions shows that all existing ad-hoc algorithms cannot scale infinitely, thus rendering scalability as an experimental issue.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)423-447
Number of pages25
JournalWireless Personal Communications
Issue number3
StatePublished - Feb 2010
Externally publishedYes


  • Ad-Hoc
  • Ad-Hoc simulator
  • Blocking factor
  • IFAS
  • MRA
  • Routing
  • Scalability


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