Noncooperative and Cooperative Joining Strategies in Cognitive Radio Networks With Random Access

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A cognitive radio (CR) system with retrial possibility and an admission cost for secondary users (SUs) to join the retrial group is investigated in this paper. If the SU finds the primary user (PU) band unavailable, it must decide with a probability estimate to either enter a retrial group or give up its service and leave the system. SUs in the retrial group independently retry after an exponentially distributed random time until they successfully access the spectrum. When the PU arrives, the SU's service on the band is interrupted. This interrupted SU is then assumed to occupy the PU band immediately when the PU completes its service. First, the noncooperative joining behavior of SUs that choose to maximize their benefit in a selfish distributed manner is investigated, and an inefficient Nash equilibrium is derived. Second, from the perspective of the social planner, the socially optimal joining strategy when SUs cooperate with each other is studied, and the corresponding Nash equilibrium is exactly derived. Finally, the result that an individually optimal strategy, in general, does not yield the socially optimal strategy is theoretically verified. Furthermore, to bridge the gap between the individually and socially optimal strategies, a novel strategy of imposing an admission fee on SUs to join the retrial group is proposed and investigated with the derivation of an optimal value for the admission fee. The numerical analysis indicates that the proposed admission fee as an equilibrium strategy and the socially optimal strategy of SUs improve efficiency in the utilization of the CR system.