How (Vehicular ad hoc network) VANET works in Networking?

How (Vehicular ad hoc network) VANET works in Networking?

How VANET works in Networking?

Vehicular ad hoc networks (VANETs) are a form of ad hoc networks specifically designed for vehicles, enabling communication among them, and with other roadside equipment. These networks can significantly improve road safety, reduce traffic congestion, and enhance the driving experience. In this article, we will discuss how VANET works in networking, including their architecture, protocols for transmission, applications, and the differences between VANETs and mobile ad hoc networks (MANETs).



A VANET is a type of ad hoc network that allows cars and other connected devices to communicate and share information while on the move. In this network, the vehicles and other devices act as nodes, forming a small network. Each node shares the information it possesses, and after sending its own data, receives the data being sent by other nodes. This way, all nodes in the network can stay updated with the relevant information.

After gathering all this data, nodes work to extract information that is relevant from the data and retransmit the information to other devices. It is an open network since nodes can join and leave it as communication between devices grows in this way. Now that new vehicles are being introduced to the market, they come with onboard sensors that make it simple for the vehicle to join and merge in the network and profit from VANET.

Now, we will discuss the following characteristics of VANET:


Characteristics of VANET

The following characteristics of VANET include:

How VANET works in Networking

Network topology: Because nodes are mobile and vehicles move at varying speeds, their positions regularly change. Because of this, network topology in VANETs frequently changes.


Unrestricted network size: VANET can be used for a single city, multiple cities, or entire countries. This translates to a globally limitless network size in VANET.


Exchange of Information: Information is frequently exchanged because of the ad hoc nature of VANET, which encourages nodes to do so from other vehicles and roadside equipment.

Infinite Power and Storage: The nodes within a VANET are typically designed to have access to unlimited power and storage capacity. This allows them to share data without any restrictions on power consumption or storage utilization. As a result, the nodes can freely exchange information with one another without having to worry about running out of resources.

On board sensors: According to VANET, nodes are rarely fitted with on board sensors that can transmit data to other objects or nodes.


Moving further, we will see the architecture of VANET.


The system architecture of vehicle ad hoc networks is described in this section. We begin by outlining the key elements of the architecture of VANETs from a domain perspective. After that, we describe how they interact and present the communication architecture. Also, we demonstrate the layered architecture for VANETs.

Main Components of VANET Architecture

VANET system can be divided into three domains

  1. Mobile Domain

There are two major parts to the mobile domain. The first element is the vehicle domain, which includes all different kinds of moving vehicles like trucks, buses, and cars. The mobile device domain, which encompasses various portable devices including PDAs, laptops, GPS units, smartphones, and other similar devices, makes up the second component.

  1. Infrastructure domain

Traffic lights, poles, and other stationary features are all part of the roadside infrastructure sector. The central infrastructure domain, on the other hand, is home to central management hubs like the traffic and vehicle management hubs. Together, these two areas make up a crucial component of the entire infrastructure needed to control traffic on roads.

  1. Generic Domain

The infrastructure required for a VANET consists of both public and private components. VANET uses various nodes, servers, and computational resources directly or indirectly as part of its infrastructure.

The infrastructure domain plays a critical role in processing data and performing modulation, receiving information from the mobile domain and establishing connections with it. The infrastructure domain exchanges data with the generic domain during the second step of the process. The efficient exchange of information between stationery and mobile resources is ultimately what ensures that users may use the road safely and effectively.

Moreover, we will discuss communication architecture below:

Communication Architecture

Here four components are used to classify different sorts of communication, which are discussed below.

  1. In-Vehicle Communication: In VANETs research, the concept of “in-vehicle communication,” which refers to the in-vehicle domain, is becoming more and more important. As they can track a vehicle’s performance, especially when it comes to identifying driver exhaustion and sleepiness, in-car communication systems are crucial for both the safety of the driver and the general public.
  2. Vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communication: This is communication between vehicles. Through this communication, the drivers may be able to communicate information and warnings with one another, enhancing driver assistance. While driving with others, it turns out to be beneficial.


  1. Vehicle-to-road infrastructure (V2I):

Communication between vehicles and the road infrastructure (V2I) is a critical area of study in VANETs. V2I enables real-time updates on traffic and weather conditions for drivers, while also providing environmental sensing and monitoring capabilities. To facilitate the transfer of data between the vehicles and the infrastructure, a number of base stations must be placed in close proximity to the roadway. Each infrastructure access point is designed to cover a specific cluster of vehicles. In this way, V2I communication plays a vital role in enhancing the safety and efficiency of road traffic.

  1. Vehicle-to-broadband cloud (V2B) communication: The use of broadband wireless technologies like 3G and 4G is increasingly becoming popular for vehicle-to-vehicle communication, which is commonly referred to as V2V. By leveraging the capabilities of the broadband cloud, this type of connectivity has the potential to significantly enhance active driver assistance and vehicle tracking. With V2V communication, vehicles can access a wealth of traffic information, monitoring data, and infotainment services, enabling them to travel safer and more efficiently on the roads.


Transmission Protocols

To ensure effective and secure communication between vehicles and roadside infrastructure, Vehicular Ad-hoc Networks (VANETs) rely on a range of communication protocols. Various transmission methods are used in VANETs to facilitate data sharing between nodes. Some of the commonly used transmission methods include:

  1. IEEE 802.11p: A standard created specifically for automotive communication is IEEE 802.11p. It has a maximum data throughput of 27 Mbps and operates in the 5.9 GHz frequency spectrum. It makes use of the contention-based MAC (Medium Access Control) protocol, which enables concurrent communication between several vehicles.


  1. Routing protocols: These protocols specify the distribution of a data packet across various nodes. These protocols are classified according to the domain or application for which they are most suited. They are discussed below:


Topology-based Routing Protocols: Routing techniques used in Vehicular Ad-hoc Networks (VANETs) rely on network connectivity information to facilitate packet forwarding. These routing techniques can be broadly classified as proactive and reactive. Proactive routing entails keeping track of routing details, such as the following forwarding hop, in the background. Link State Routing (LSR) and Fish-eye State Routing are examples of proactive routing techniques (FSR). Reactive routing, on the other hand, only opens a route when a node needs to talk to another.

The protocols for reactive routing are AODV, PGB, DSR, and TORA.

Position-based Routing Protocols: One class of routing algorithms is position-based routing. Both of them can select the subsequent forwarding hops based on the global positioning data. They transmit the packet to the neighbor that is one-hop away and closest to the destination, without requiring any prior map information. Moreover, this is divided further into two types, which are discussed below:

  1. Position based greedy V2V protocols: The greedy approach in Vehicular Ad-hoc Networks (VANETs) involves passing the message to the neighbor that is the furthest away in the direction of the final destination. This approach requires intermediate nodes to have their own location, as well as the location of their neighbors and the final destination. Examples of techniques that implement the greedy approach include Greedy Perimeter Coordinator Routing (GPCR), Car-to-Car (CAR), and Directional Routing (DIR).


  1. Delay Tolerant Protocols: Finding a node to carry a message is not a big deal in urban environments with densely populated vehicles. However, building an end-to-end route on rural highways or at night in cities can be challenging. Sparse networks, therefore, need to consider specific factors. To address these challenges, various Delay Tolerant Protocol varieties have been developed, such as MOVE, VADD, and SADV.


  1. Cluster-based Routing Protocols: Cluster-based routing is preferred in clusters. After a group of nodes proclaims itself to be a part of it, the cluster head node will send the packet to the cluster. COIN and LORA CBF are two examples of numerous cluster-based routing protocols.


  1. Geographic Routing Protocol (GRP): This routing protocol enables effective and dependable communication in VANETs. It chooses the most efficient route for data transmission based on the geographical location of the cars. It is especially helpful in situations where conventional routing protocols fail, like in crowded cities or when there are hurdles.


  1. Broadcast routing protocols are extensively used in VANET for distributing advertisements and announcements as well as exchanging traffic, weather, and emergency information with other vehicles.


  1. Wireless Access in Vehicular Environments: WAVE stands for Wireless Access in Vehicular Environments. It is a communication protocol created by DSRC and IEEE 802.11p. For vehicular communication, it offers a suite of protocols at the Physical (PHY), MAC, and Network (NET) layers.


  1. Dedicated Short-Range Communication (DSRC): It is a 5.9 GHz frequency band wireless communication system. It is utilized for safety-critical applications including collision avoidance, emergency braking, and junction safety and offers low-latency, high-reliability communication.


  1. Ad-hoc: A routing system called On-demand Distance Vector (AODV) is used in VANETs to build dynamic, self-organizing networks. It employs a reactive method of route discovery, which implies that routes are only created as necessary. In a VANET, this method lowers the overhead related to routing.

These are some of the transmission protocols used in VANETs. The choice of protocol depends on the application requirements, the network topology, and the available infrastructure.

Applications of VANET

Safety-oriented, convenience-oriented, commercial-oriented, and other applications are the four main groups of VANET applications that are conceivable. We will discuss these applications in detail.

  1. Safety Applications

Traditionally, safety applications have aimed to prevent accidents, and as a result, developers have mostly driven the development of vehicular ad hoc networks towards these applications. Certain applications, such as crash avoidance, require significant communication between automobiles or between vehicles and infrastructure.

VANETs can be used to improve safety on roads by providing real-time traffic updates and alerts to drivers. Safety applications can include collision warning systems, emergency vehicle notification, and traffic congestion detection.

  1. Convenience Applications

This is more broken down into Active Prediction, Route Diversions, Electronic Toll Collection, and Parking Availability.

  1. Commercial Applications

They are classified as value-added advertisements, real-time video transmission, digital map download, and Internet access.

  1. Productive Applications

Environmental advantages, time utilization, and fuel savings are the three categories under which productive applications are grouped.


Other than these major applications, there are few more applications of VANET, which are as follows:

  • Traffic Management: By giving drivers real-time traffic information, VANETs can aid in the reduction of overcrowding. They can also be used to optimize traffic flow by coordinating traffic signals and other roadside infrastructure.
  • Entertainment and Infotainment: VANETs can provide passengers with entertainment and infotainment services such as internet access, music streaming, and video on demand.
  • Navigation: VANETs can be used to provide real-time navigation information to drivers, including route planning and traffic updates.
  • Autonomous Driving: VANETs can play a crucial role in the development of autonomous driving technology by providing vehicles with real-time information about their surroundings, such as road conditions and traffic.
  • Environmental Monitoring: VANETs can be used to monitor environmental conditions such as air quality and weather conditions and provide real-time updates to drivers and traffic management systems.


Difference between MANET and VANET

MANET and VANET are two types of ad hoc networks that differ in their characteristics and applications. Here are the main differences between MANET and VANET:

Difference Point MANET VANET
Definition In a mobile ad-hoc network (MANET), nodes connect with one another devoid of a stable infrastructure or centralized control. To create a network, nodes are free to move and connect with one another. Vehicle-to-vehicle communication is made possible via the Vehicular Ad-hoc Network (VANET), a form of wireless network that includes sensors and traffic signals. The vehicles have communication tools that let them connect to a network and share data with infrastructure and other vehicles.
Mobility MANET nodes are very mobile and have frequent positional changes. Because of this, managing the network topology is difficult. Although very mobile, vehicles in VANET can only go along roads and highways. Because of this, managing the network topology is easier and more predictable.
Network Architecture Nodes in a decentralized network called MANET serve as hosts and routers simultaneously. Data packets must be forwarded to other nodes by each node in the network. Depending on the application, VANET may be centralized or decentralized. A central organization oversees the network and regulates information flow in a centralized VANET. Each vehicle functions as a node in a decentralized VANET and is in charge of transmitting data packets to other cars.
Communication Range The power of the communication devices that the nodes employ determines the MANET’s limited communication range. To communicate, nodes need to be close to one another. In general, VANET has a wider communication range than MANET, allowing for longer range communications between cars and infrastructure.
Applications MANET is utilized in emergency response and military applications where a network must be swiftly put up without the need for a fixed infrastructure. Application areas for VANET in transportation and traffic management include route planning, traffic flow optimization, and collision avoidance.


Final Thoughts

Now you know How  VANET works in Networking in brief. VANETs are an innovative solution to improve road safety, reduce traffic congestion, and enhance the driving experience. They can be used in various applications, including safety, traffic management, and infotainment services. Although VANETs and MANETs are similar, they differ in their communication characteristics and applications.

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Q. Explain System Architecture of VANETs?

The following elements are frequently seen in the architecture of VANETs:
●      On-board Units (OBUs): OBUs are components that are mounted inside cars and allow for connectivity with infrastructure. They are in charge of sending and receiving messages from roadside units and other OBUs.
●      Roadside Units (RSUs): RSUs, which are mounted on the side of the road, provide the communication infrastructure for VANETs. They are capable of receiving and sending messages from RSUs and OBUs. 
●      WAPs (Wireless Access Points): WAPs are used to connect automobiles and roadside infrastructure wirelessly.
●      The control center (CC) is in charge of overseeing the VANET network. It gathers information from OBUs and RSUs and offers services including entertainment, emergency response, and traffic control.
●      Internet Gateway (IG): By connecting the VANET to the internet, the internet gateway enables automobiles to use internet-based services like navigation, traffic updates, and weather predictions.

Q. What advantages can VANET offer?

VANET offers a variety of advantages, such as increased driving comfort, lessened traffic, and greater road safety. VANET can enhance traffic flow, decrease accidents, and give drivers real-time information on traffic, weather, and other factors by enabling vehicles to interact with one another and the infrastructure.

Q. How can VANET optimize the flow of traffic?

By giving drivers real-time information regarding road conditions, traffic congestion, and other routes, VANET helps enhance traffic flow. Drivers can use this information to avoid crowded regions and select the fastest route to their destination

Q. How does VANET protect the privacy of vehicle owners?

To protect the anonymity of vehicle owners, VANET employs pseudonyms. These pseudonyms are used in place of the real name of the vehicle owner as temporary identifiers. This guards against illegal tracking and guarantees the privacy of the car’s owner.

Q. How does the VANET make use of wireless technology?

 VANET employs wireless communication to make it possible for infrastructure and automobiles to talk to one another. The IEEE 802.11p standard, which enables quick and dependable communication in high-speed situations, serves as the foundation for communication. OBUs and RSUs use this standard to transmit messages and data, including direction, speed, and location information.

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