In multihop wireless networks (MWNs), wireless nodes can communicate with each other through intermediate nodes without the help of any infrastructure. Therefore, wireless nodes are responsible for organizing and configuring the network, and the management of the network is distributed between the nodes. Consequently, it is difficult to overcome the existing challenges such as node mobility and dynamic topology changes, energy constraints, etc. Software defined networking (SDN) is a promising solution, which decouples the control plane and the data plane to overcome the challenges of traditional networks. In the SDN concept, a logically centralized controller makes routing decisions based on the global view of the network and the requirements of applications, and then programs the network. Therefore, it helps to optimize resource allocation and improve the network performance. In this paper, we consider the benefits and the various aspects of applying the SDN concept in MWNs (SDMWN). We first introduce MWNs, existing challenges and the motivation for applying SDN to such networks. Then, after explaining the SDN concept, we review the related work in SDMWN. Finally, we discuss the challenges in applying SDN and future research directions in this area.

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Keywords Multihop wireless networks (MWNs), Software defined multihop wireless networking (SDMWN), Software defined networking (SDN)
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Journal Journal of Communications and Networks
Zahmatkesh, A. (Afsane), & Kunz, T. (2017). Software defined multihop wireless networks: Promises and challenges. Journal of Communications and Networks, 19(6), 546–554. doi:10.1109/JCN.2017.000094