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Heterogeneous Cloud Radio Access Networks

Cloud-based radio access technologies have the potential to bring a paradigm-shift in conventional radio access networks in order to deal with the oceanic volume of interferences expected in 5G heterogeneous networks. This special issue aims to publish original research contributions addressing the unique challenges and technical issues for successful rollout and operations of these future communication technologies.  In future generation wireless networks, most of the processing is expected to be centralized in order to deal with the oceanic volume of data as well as interference in hyper-dense heterogeneous networks (HetNets), new paradigms for improving both spectral efficiency and energy efficiency through suppressing inter-tier interference and enhancing the cooperative processing capabilities will be needed. Towards this end, cloud computing technologies can be the game changer in shouldering the processing overhead of the conventional macro base stations (MBSs) in HetNets. Consequently, heterogeneous cloud radio access networks (H-CRANs) may emerge as a cost-effective potential solution to alleviate inter-tier interference and improve cooperative processing gains in HetNets through combination with cloud computing. H-CRANs can vastly enhance the capabilities of MBSs equipped with massive multiple antenna techniques (massive MIMO) and simplify low power nodes through connecting to a signal processing cloud. There is a huge scope of research in resource allocation and physical-layer design and optimization in H-CRANs.

Edited by: Muhammad R. A. Khandaker, Mugen Peng, Ali A Nasir, Faisal Tariq, Nurul H. Mahmood

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