Video Transport over Ad Hoc Networks: Multistream Coding with Multipath Transport

Shiwen Mao, Shunan Lin, Shivendra S. Panwar, Yao Wang, Emre Celebi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


Enabling video transport over ad hoc networks is more challenging than over other wireless networks. The wireless links in an ad hoc network are highly error prone and can go down frequently because of node mobility, interference, channel fading, and the lack of infrastructure. However, the mesh topology of ad hoc networks implies that it is possible to establish multiple paths between a source and a destination. Indeed, multipath transport provides an extra degree of freedom in designing error resilient video coding and transport schemes. In this paper, we propose to combine multistream coding with multipath transport, to show that, in addition to traditional error control techniques, path diversity provides an effective means to combat transmission error in ad hoc networks. The schemes that we have examined are: 1) feedback based reference picture selection; 2) layered coding with selective automatic repeat request; and 3) multiple description motion compensation coding. All these techniques are based on the motion compensated prediction technique found in modern video coding standards. We studied the performance of these three schemes via extensive simulations using both Markov channel models and OPNET Modeler. To further validate the viability and performance advantages of these schemes, we implemented an ad hoc multiple path video streaming testbed using notebook computers and IEEE 802.11b cards. The results show that great improvement in video quality can be achieved over the standard schemes with limited additional cost. Each of these three video coding/transport techniques is best suited for a particular environment, depending on the availability of a feedback channel, the end-to-end delay constraint, and the error characteristics of the paths.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)1721-1737
Number of pages17
JournalIEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications
Issue number10
StatePublished - Dec 2003


  • Ad hoc networks
  • Error resilience
  • IEEE 802.11
  • Multipath transport
  • Video transport
  • Wireless networks

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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