Conclusions and Outlook

We conclude this book by summarizing and highlighting its contributions to the area of hardware, channel and PHY layer algorithms of distributed cooperative communication systems. We shall also discuss how certain simplifying assumptions throughout this book could be relaxed to reflect better the real-world deployments of such systems. We will then discuss in some detail open research topics that we identified whilst writing this book. Finally, even though not really related to the technical content of this book, we shall also briefly discuss some open business challenges when deploying cooperative systems.

6.1 Contributions

Throughout this book, we have tried to maintain a common thread. Most notably, we have divided hardware, channel and protocol designs into transparent versus regenerative approaches. Furthermore, for the channel and protocol design, we have rigorously distinguished simple relaying versus space–time processing approaches. Throughout, we have tried to give basics, taxonomies and foundations, together with first key milestones and latest developments in this dispersive field. We now review the book's contributions on a per-chapter basis.

6.1.1 Chapter 1

The aim of this chapter was to give a general introduction and taxonomy of the diverse field of cooperative communication systems. To this end, we have dealt with the following:

  • Quintessentials. First and foremost, we have seen that cooperation facilitates pathloss, diversity and multiplexing ...

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