Analyzing Age of Information in Multiaccess Networks by Fluid Limits

by   Zhiyuan Jiang, et al.

In this paper, we adopt the fluid limits to analyze Age of Information (AoI) in a wireless multiaccess network with many users. We consider the case wherein users have heterogeneous i.i.d. channel conditions and the statuses are generate-at-will. Convergence of the AoI occupancy measure to the fluid limit, represented by a Partial Derivative Equation (PDE), is proved within an approximation error inversely proportional to the number of users. Global convergence to the equilibrium of the PDE, i.e., stationary AoI distribution, is also proved. Based on this framework, it is shown that an existing AoI lower bound in the literature is in fact asymptotically tight, and a simple threshold policy, with the thresholds explicitly derived, achieves the optimum asymptotically. The proposed threshold-based policy is also much easier to decentralize than the widely-known index-based policies which require comparing user indices. To showcase the usability of the framework, we also use it to analyze the average non-linear AoI functions (with power and logarithm forms) in wireless networks. Again, explicit optimal threshold-based policies are derived, and average age functions proven. Simulation results show that even when the number of users is limited, e.g., 10, the proposed policy and analysis are still effective.


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