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Special issue on vehicular networks



The continued growth in world population, longstanding trends in urbanization, and the need for continuous connection of individuals are driving the adoption of modern “always-on” mobile and connected services. Concurrently, transportation networks are increasingly essential to sustain vitality on all levels, including personal, social, economic, and political. Critical metrics for transportation include energy efficiency, safety, throughput, and transit time. Future implementation of 5G networks and emerging 6G networks will be challenged to meet the combined needs of this transportation/mobility/vehicular context and that of personal mobility and connectivity. 

Novel technological scenarios are arising in the field of future lend mobile networks. Aiming to satisfy very challenging requirements, such as ultra-high reliable and ultra-low latency communications, as well as high efficiency and low-energy impacting, vehicular networks are playing a relevant role in what would be 6G scenarios. Traditional vehicular ad-hoc networks, where nodes communicate to each other following an opportunistic model, are now appearing as enhanced networks, with evolved nodes able to perform computational and control tasks, develop self-organizing and self-sustaining capabilities, as well as maintain connectivity availability. 

In support of this transition, emerging communication paradigms can be adopted to make data transmission effective in very high dynamic contexts, including the re-programmability of the environment and the transmission conditions by means of Reprogrammable Intelligent Metasurfaces (RIMs). Also, Optical Wireless Communications (OWC) are envisioned as one of the main enabling technologies that guarantee a high data rate with a low-energy impact. Specifically, Visible Light Communications (VLC) represent a promising technology for high data rate vehicle-to-vehicle and vehicle-to-infrastructure links. Novel frameworks based on Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Function Virtualization (NFV) are expected to bring programmability, flexibility and scalability in vehicular networks, simplify network management and promote connectivity switching and programmable metasurfaces. They are also supported by revolutionary networking models, such as Information Centric Networking (ICN) that provide distributed caching and computing services, and Social-based Networking, able to enhance network performance through social network analysis. Finally, solutions based on heterogeneous ground and aerial devices are expected to address connectivity issues, while guaranteeing high performance.

This special issue seeks novel contributions dealing with rising communication and networking technologies for vehicular networks, in a holistic fashion or at different layers, to meet the high expectations of the 6G era.


Vehicular communications and networking, 5G, 6G, next generation networks


Prospective authors are cordially invited to submit their original manuscript on the suggested topics listed in the FULL call for papers​.​​

Leading Guest Editor

Anna Maria ​Vegni, Università degli Studi Roma Tre, Italy 

Guest Editors

Valeria Loscrí​, Inria Lille-Nord Europe, France​​
Thomas D.C. Little​, Boston University, USA
Ivan Wang-Hei Ho​, The Hong Kong Polytechnic University, Hong Kong, China ​