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Mobile Information Systems
Volume 3 (2007), Issue 2, Pages 89-106

The Application of Fluid Mobility Modelling in Wireless Cellular Networks

Ronan J. Skehill and Sean McGrath

Wireless Access Research Centre, University of Limerick, Ireland

Received 24 May 2007; Accepted 24 May 2007

Copyright © 2007 Hindawi Publishing Corporation. This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.


Mobility models, synthetic or trace, try to accurately model the movement of a single user or a group of users. Models can be used in simulators and emulators to investigate the consequences of mobility on new protocols or network management techniques. A limitation with current trace mobility models is they are based on empirical data which are limited to specific network types and environments. Limitations with synthetic models are that they are complex, computationally heavy, and lack realism. To address these issue a new approach needs to be taken. One such approach is the use of fluid mechanics and transport theory to represent user mobility. A model based on viscous free irrotational fluid mechanics with empirical data from pedestrian and vehicular studies provide a means of creating realistic group movement characteristics with smooth non random trajectories and smooth continuous velocity. The model is used in an example to provide boundary crossing rates for users in a cellular network and optimising the size of cellular location areas.