QMIX Aided Routing in Social-Based Delay-Tolerant Networks

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IEEE Transactions on Vehicular Technology


Delay-tolerant network (DTN) is a network that's designed to operate effectively in heterogeneous networks that may lack continuous network connectivity. It is characterized by their lack of instantaneous end-to-end paths, resulting in difficulties in designing effective DTN routing protocols. Traditional routing algorithms largely rely on greedy schemes. Such schemes can not guarantee the packets will be eventually transmitted to their destinations, thereby presenting a poor transmission efficiency. Recently, the social-based method has attracted a large amount of attention in wireless network routing. It can use the community and the centrality information to increase the delivery rate of the whole network. Therefore, in this article, we introduce the social-based mechanism to our DTN routing design. Besides, how the distributed nodes can learn the collaboration strategies is another challenge. Inspired by the recent success of multi-agent learning in online control, we adopt a centralized training and distributed execution learning paradigm and design a hierarchical social-based DTN architecture. Based on this, we propose a collaborative multi-agent reinforcement learning (termed as QMIX) aided routing algorithm.

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Dec-POMDP, delay-tolerant networks, QMIX, routing protocol, social attributes


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