Supporting IP/LEO Satellite Networks by Handover-Independent IP Mobility Management

Hiroshi Tsunoda, Kohei Ohta, Nei Kato, Yoshiaki Nemoto

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

57 Citations (Scopus)


Low earth orbit (LEO) satellite networks are capable of providing wireless connectivity to any part of the world while guaranteeing short propagation delays. There is a huge need for developing Internet protocol (IP) friendly networking technologies that aim to integrate emerging LEO satellite networks with the already existing terrestrial IP networks. LEO satellite networks are well characterized by frequent handover occurrences. These handovers largely affect mobility management in LEO satellite networks. Existing IP mobility management protocols, such as mobile IP, manage the location of mobile nodes on the basis of the network topology. Applying such mechanisms in LEO satellite networks will cause a binding update of mobile nodes upon every handover occurrence. Given the frequent occurrence of handovers in LEO satellite networks, a potentially large number of binding update requests will be generated and ultimately affects the scalability of mobility management. This paper argues a handover-independent mobility management scheme for LEO satellite networks. The proposed scheme purposes to exploit geographical location information to make the mobility management independent from handovers. This handover-independent management method reduces the number of update requests and eventually increases the system scalability. A detailed description of the actual implementation of the scheme is given. Through a mathematical analysis, the paper evaluates the required management cost and accordingly verifies the scalability of the proposed scheme.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)300-307
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Journal on Selected Areas in Communications
Issue number2
Publication statusPublished - 2004 Feb


  • Binding update
  • Geographical location
  • Handover
  • Internet protocol/low earth orbit (IP/LEO) satellite networks
  • Mobility management

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Electrical and Electronic Engineering


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