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Ozan Tonguz
HH B203

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since March 30, 2004
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Latest Papers

Prof. Ozan Tonguz's latest papers can be found at the New Papers section.

Latest News

Tonguz Group Member joins Facebook


One of our group members, Dr. Jiun-Ren Lin, joined Facebook last month. Jiun-Ren had completed his PhD in December 2014 in the area of intra-car wireless sensor networks and then stayed as a Research Scientist for 6 months in our group. Jiun-Ren received offers from 9 companies including top companies such as Google, Facebook, Cisco, Yelp, and many others. We congratulate our group member Dr. Jiun-Ren Lin for his new position and wish him great success at Facebook.

Our group is proud of you Jiun-Ren !

Scott Institute of Energy Research funds the Smart Grid research of Prof. Ozan Tonguz and Prof. Gabriela Hug


The Scott Institute of Carnegie Mellon University has funded a joint proposal of Prof. Tonguz and Prof. Hug who have been collaborating on Smart Grid research. The specific proposal is on how to do distributed optimization through intelligent partitioning of existing power systems. The underlying research has major communications and networking components as well as key power system concepts pertaining to generation, transmission, and distribution. The proposed research leverages another funded research project by ABB currently pursued jointly by Prof. Tonguz and Prof. Hug.

Texas Instruments Provides Gift Funding to Prof. Tonguz


Texas Instruments (TI) has provided Gift Funding to Prof. Tonguz and his Research Group for research on intra-car wireless networks. TI has expressed an interest in the pioneering research initiated by Prof. Tonguz and his students in the area of intra-car wireless networks. The objective of this research is to replace the wired connections inside modern cars between sensors and Engine Control Units (ECUs) with wireless communications. Replacing the wired communications in vehicles between sensors and ECUs with wireless communications can lead to several important benefits such as: (1) lower vehicle weight; (2) better fuel efficiency and vehicle performance; (3) enabling an open architecture for the ever increasing number of sensors in contemporary cars.

The provided gift funding will be used to test the capabilities and limitations of some of the existing TI chips for intra-car wireless networks in the experimental setup that exists in our Wireless Networking Laboratory.

Audi publishes news item on Virtual Traffic Lights


Audi, one of the top car manufacturers, has published a news item on Virtual Traffic Lights (VTL) in the September 2013 issue of Audi's Encounter Technology Magazine. The news item was given under the title of “Green Wave” and it described the basic features of Virtual Traffic Lights, how it can be used to mitigate traffic congestion in urban areas, and the efforts of Prof. Ozan Tonguz for commercializing this technology. The Horizons section of Audi's Encounter described only 3 groundbreaking new technologies in the world for the automotive industry in the September 2013 issue and VTL was one of them. (PDF)

Dagstuhl Workshop on Inter-Vehicle Communications


Prof. Ozan Tonguz was one of the four co-organizers of the prestigious Dagstuhl Workshop on Quos Vadis: Inter-vehicular Communications that took place in September 2013 at Schloss Dagstuhl in Saarland, Germany. The other 3 organizers were Prof. Falko Dressler from the University of Innsbruck (Austria), Prof. Hanes Hartenstein from Karlsruhe Institute of Technology (Germany), and Dr. Onur Altintas from Toyota. Dagstuhl is a prestigious workshp that is fully sponsored by the German Ministry of Education to promote free exchange of ideas amongst the top scientists and researchers on hot topics of computer science and the attendance is by invitation only. About 35 researchers met at Dagstuhl this year to discuss the ongoing research in vehicular networks. The researchers who attended came from USA, Europe, and Asia (both from academia and industry).

Prof. Tonguz Gives a Keynote On Virtual Traffic Lights at NGMAST 2013 in Prague, Czech Republic


Prof. Tonguz gave a Keynote entitled “Virtual Traffic Lights: A Paradigm Shift in Traffic Management” at the 7th International Conference on Next Generation Mobile Apps, and Services (NGMAST'2013) which took place at the Czech Technical University in Prague, Czech Republic. The conference was attended by about 60 researchers and scientists. The Keynote highlighted the key characteristics of Virtual Traffic Lights (VTL) as a new technology and showed how it can revolutionize traffic management in urban areas. More specifically, it was described in detail how VTL can mitigate traffic congestion substantially, reduce the commute time of urban workers, decrease carbon footprint of vehicles, and lead to a greener environment.

Prof. Hsin-Mu Tsai, an Alumni of Tonguz Group, receives the Intel Early Career Faculty Award in Asia


Prof. Hsin-Mu (Michael) Tsai, an Assistant Professor in the Computer Science and Information Engineering Department of National Taiwan University, has received the prestigious Intel Early Career Award. Michael had received his PhD at CMU in 2010 under the supervision of Professor Ozan Tonguz for pioneering work he had conducted on intra-car wireless sensor networks, a research project sponsored by General Motors. The Intel Award is first of its kind in the whole Asia region. Congratulations to Michael for this well-deserved award! Details of the Award can be found at the following URL.

Professor Hsin-Mu Tsai Received the Prestigious 2013 Intel Early Career Faculty Award!

IEEE Communications Society selects the article by Prof. Tonguz and his co-workers as "Free Article of the Month"


IEEE Communications Society (ComSoc) chooses an article by Prof. Tonguz and his co-workers as the ”Free Article of the Month”. The title of the article is “What if Wireless Routers Were Social ? Approaching Wireless Mesh Networks from a Social Networks Perspective” and it was published in the December 2012 issue of the IEEE Wireless Communications Magazine. The article shows the synergies between wireless mesh networks and social networks and how to exploit these synergies for enhancing performance and increasing resilience against security attacks. (PDF)

Discovery Channel Canada broadcasts The Biologically Inspired Approach To Traffic Management


The interest on the biologically inspired approach to traffic management formulated by Prof. Ozan Tonguz is on a growing spiral: on January 14, 2013, the Discovery Channel Canada featured this approach proposed by Prof. Tonguz and his team and broadcast a movie clip on Virtual Traffic Lights and how the inspiration drawn from nature can shed light on solving some acute problems in transportation.. The URL for the movie clip can be found here: Daily Planet: January 10th 2013.

"Insect-inspired virtual traffic lights could replace – or augment – the real things" on Gizmag


The biologically inspired approach to solving fundamental transportation problems has been recently featured by Gizmag. The new approach to managing traffic by learning from self-organizing biological systems (such as ants, bees, termites, fish, and birds) was first formulated by Prof. Ozan Tonguz in a keynote delivered at IEEE 2010 Vehicular Networking Conference using the Virtual Traffic Lights scheme that was jointly developed by CMU and U. of Porto researchers as an example or instance. The same approach was later developed further (by showing that it is applicable to other transportation problems as well) by Prof. Tonguz and was presented at an Invited Talk given at MIT in October 2011. It was shown that this approach has the potential to solve several acute transportation problems awaiting solutions (such as mitigating traffic congestion during rush hours). A new CMU start-up known as Virtual Traffic Lights, LLC is now working on commercializing this technology. The feature article can be found at the following link: Insect-inspired virtual traffic lights could replace – or augment – the real things.

"Virtual traffic lights help solve commuting hell" on New Scientist Magazine


The biologically-inspired approach of Prof. Ozan Tonguz to solving transportation problems has attracted a lot of attention and was recently featured by the New Scientist Magazine. New Scientist is a prestigious Science Magazine based in London with a global audience of about 900,000 people (close to 1 million people). They also have offices in the USA (Boston, etc.).

This biologically inspired approach was developed by Prof. Tonguz after the Virtual Traffic Lights scheme was developed by his group at CMU and U. of Porto researchers. This powerful approach that uses the behavior of self-organizing biological systems was shown to hold the promise of solving several fundamental transportation problems such as mitigating traffic congestion, reducing the commute time of urban workers, reducing energy consumption of vehicles during rush hours, reducing the carbon foot print of cars, promoting a greener traffic control system as well as other benefits. A new CMU start-up known as Virtual Traffic Lights, LLC is now trying to commercialize this technology. The feature article can be found at the following link: Virtual traffic lights help solve commuting hell.

Latest papers are now online


Prof. Ozan Tonguz's latest papers are now online and available here. Please refer to the New Papers section for more information.

Top accessed article in IEEExplore


The paper entitled “Optimal Transmit Power in Wireless Sensor Networks,” by Sooksan Panichpapiboon, Gianluigi Ferrari, and Ozan K. Tonguz was ranked among the top 25 most accessed articles of IEEE Transactions on Mobile Computing in the month of May 2012. The article discusses the optimal transmit power necessary for the connectivity of a wireless sensor network. This work was part of the PhD thesis of Sooksan Panichpapiboon, a former PhD student of Prof. Tonguz, which was completed in 2006 under the supervision of Prof. Tonguz. The other collaborator on this work was Dr. Gianluigi Ferrari who is now an Associate Professor at the University of Parma in Italy.

Prof. Tonguz delivers the Keynote at the IEEE ICC Workshop on Intelligent Vehicular Networking in Ottawa, Canada


Prof. Ozan Tonguz delivered the Keynote at the IEEE 2012 International Conference on Communications (ICC) workshop on “Intelligent Vehicular Networking: V2V/V2I Communications and Applications”. The Invited Talk was entitled “Biologically Inspired Solutions to Fundamental Transportation Problems” and it discussed how mother nature has the solutions to many difficult transportation problems we are facing today. More specifically, it was discussed how the behavior of self-organizing biological systems (such as ants, bees, termites, birds, and fish) can shed light on solving acute transportation problems we are facing today, such as mitigating congestion, reducing the commute time of urban workers, increasing the energy-efficiency of transportation, reducing the carbon footprint of vehicles, etc. Several examples were discussed to illustrate the new approach. The workshop that took place in Ottawa in June 2012 had 4 Invited Talks and about a dozen contributed papers from the USA, Europe, and Asia.

Prof. Tonguz appears on Pittsburgh Business Times


Prof. Tonguz was interviewed by Malia Spencer, a reporter of Pittsburgh Business Times, on Jan 20th, 2012. The title of the article is “Carnegie Mellon University professor envisions a future with virtual traffic lights.” The full coverage can be found here.

Sooksan Panichpapiboon Earns Recognition From National Research Council of Thailand


Sooksan Panichpapiboon, who earned his Ph.D. in 2006 under the supervision of Prof. Ozan Tonguz, received the 2011 Dissertation Award from the National Research Council of Thailand (NRCT) for his doctoral thesis, “Practical Design Issues in Ad Hoc Wireless Networks: Transmit Power, Topology and Routing.” His Excellency Mr. Abhisit Vejjajiva, prime minister of the Kingdom of Thailand, presented him with the award earlier this year.

In addition to recognizing Panichpapiboon, who is now a faculty member at King Mongkut's Institute of Technology Ladkrabang in Bangkok, the NRCT also honored Tonguz, “as the major advisor who contributed advice and support” to Panichpapiboon's thesis.

For more on the award, visit Panichpapiboon's website.

Wantanee wins prestigious Google fellowship nomination



Our group member Wantanee Viriyasitavat has recently been nominated as one of the two PhD students who will represent Carnegie Mellon University in the prestigious Google Fellowship competition. Google Fellowship competition is a nationwide competition which is very selective as it allows only the top students in computer science and electrical and computer engineering departments of top universities in the U.S. to be nominated. Wantanee first won the ECE nomination and then was selected as one of the two PhD students (the other PhD student being from the CS Department of CMU) to represent CMU in this prestigious competition. Wantanee will represent CMU in the category of mobile computing which is the area of her PhD thesis research. Wantanee currently works in designing routing protocols for vehicular ad hoc networks and her research is sponsored by General Motors.

Prof. Tonguz delivers the Keynote at the IEEE 2010 Vehicular Networking Conference



Prof. Ozan Tonguz delivered the Keynote at the IEEE 2010 Vehicular Networking Conference (VNC) that was held in Jersey City, NJ, between December 13-15. The conference was attended by about 100 researchers from academia as well as several companies including Toyota, Honda, Intel, Denso, etc. The title of the Keynote delivered by Prof. Tonguz was:

“Emerging and Future Applications of Vehicular networks: A Vision”

The conference emphasized the research challenges of vehicular ad hoc networks at all layers of the protocol stack. The applications that received the most attention were safety applications, traffic information systems, and entertainment using the new vehicle-to-vehicle communications capability of modern cars.

The Keynote delivered by Prof. Tonguz elaborated on the role of vehicular networks in sustainable energy (via electric cars), greener environment, reduced carbon footprint, and smart grid. In all these themes, the burgeoning role of vehicular ad hoc networks as an important enabler was discussed and emphasized. In particular, the Keynote described a biologically-inspired new scheme known as “Virtual Traffic Lights” (a scheme co-invented in 2009 by Prof. Ozan Tonguz and his collaborator Prof. Michel Ferreira at the U. of Porto and their students) which illustrated how congestion — a Grand Challenge of our times — can be mitigated by the vehicle-to-vehicle communications capability of modern cars. It was articulated that this biologically-inspired scheme can increase flow rates in urban areas by 60% during rush hours which seems quite significant when one considers the implications of such an improvement in reducing the commute time of workers in urban areas, reducing congestion, reducing carbon footprint of future cars, supporting a greener environment, and increased productivity.

Tonguz Group Member Yi Zhang Accepts an Offer at General Electric (GE) Global Research in Niskayuna, New York, as a Research Scientist


Yi Zhang, a member of Tonguz Research Group, has joined GE Global Research in Niskayuna, NY, in August 2010. Yi Zhang was co-advised by Prof. Ozan Tonguz and Prof. Marija Ilic. Yi defended her PhD thesis in July 2010. Her PhD dissertation was entitled “Mitigating Blackouts via Smart Relays: A Machine Learning Approach” and it investigated how to mitigate future blackouts by using self-organized networking paradigms. Yi will continue her research at GE as a Research Scientist in the general area of 'Smart Grid'.

Invited Talk at Dagstuhl Workshop, in Saarland, Germany


Prof. Tonguz gave an Invited Talk at the prestigious Dagstuhl Seminar in Germany, in October 2010. The Dagstuhl Workshop on Vehicular Networks brought together key researchers in the hot research area of Vehicular Networks which has recently attracted a tremendous amount of attention from car manufacturers and academia. The emerging applications of vehicular networks include safety, traffic information systems, and entertainment. The Invited Talk delivered by Prof. Tonguz was entitled “Vehicular Networks: Principles and Applications”.

Tonguz Group Member Hsin-Mu (Michael) Tsai Joins One of The Top Universities in Taiwan as an Assistant Professor


Hsin-Mu (Michael) Tsai was extended an offer to join the Department of Computer Science and Information Engineering of National Taiwan University in Taiwan as a tenure-track Assistant Professor effective August 1, 2010. Michael was working on the Intra-Car Wireless Sensor Network project sponsored by General Motors under the supervision of Prof. Ozan Tonguz. National Taiwan University is considered to be one of the top 3 universities (many people consider it as Taiwan's top university) in Taiwan in the areas of computer science and electrical and computer engineering.

His new personal website can be found here.

ECE Paper One of Most Accessed in December 2009


A paper published by Carnegie Mellon | Portugal ECE PhD student Mate Boban, ECE alum Geoff Misek and ECE Professor Ozan Tonguz was the second most accessed IEEE Globecom 2008 workshop paper in IEEE Xplore for December 2009. The paper, “What is the Best Achievable QoS for Unicast Routing in VANETs?,” evaluates the attainable performance of unicast routing protocols in future vehicular networks. Boban is now a second-year Information and Communications Technologies Institute PhD student working under the supervision of Tonguz and Associate Professor Joao Barros at the University of Porto.

A PDF of the most accessed papers is available here.

Cylab Supported Paper among Top 100 Cited by IEEE Xplore


A paper published by two former ECE PhD students Sooksan Panichpapiboon and Nawaporn Wisitpongphan of Professor Tonguz, Dr. Gianluigi Ferrari, and ECE Professor Ozan Tonguz is one of the top 100 papers accessed in the IEEE Xplore in the month of June 2008 [PDF]. The paper entitled “Route Reservation in Ad Hoc Wireless networks” was published in the January 2007 issue of the IEEE Transactions on Mobile Computing.

The paper investigates under which conditions (in terms of route discovery, MAC protocol, pipelining, etc.) reserving a route in ad hoc wireless networks might be superior compared to non-reservation based schemes. While most wired networks use non-reservation-based switching and communication paradigms such as packet switching, it is shown in the paper that certain real-time applications such as voice and video using a route-reservation based communication scheme might yield better performance in terms of delay. The paper also proposes a new queuing-theoretic model for investigating the performance of non-reservation based communications in ad hoc wireless networks.

Dr. Sooksan Panichpapiboon is now a faculty member in the School of Engineering of King Mongkut Institute of Technology in Thailand, while Dr. Wisitpongphan is a Research Associate in the R&D of General Motors in Detroit. Dr. Gianluigi Ferrari who was a postdoc in the research group of Prof. Tonguz at the time this work was done is now an Assistant Professor in the Department of Information Engineering of the University of Parma in Italy.

The research reported in this paper was supported in part by a grant from Cylab.

Special Issue on Vehicular Networks


Prof. Tonguz was recently invited to serve as the Managing Guest Editor of a Special Issue of AD HOC NETWORKS JOURNAL (Elsevier) on Vehicular Networks. The Special Issue aims to meet the growing research demand in vehicular ad hoc networks, a hot topic of great interest to car manufacturers and Departments of Transportation in the US and Europe. Two other General Motors researchers, Dr. Cem Saraydar and Dr. Fan Bai, will assist Prof. Tonguz as Guest Editors for making the Special Issue a major platform where the state-of-the-art research results of transportation industry and academia will be published. The Call For Papers for the Special Issue can be found here. The paper submission deadline for the Special Issue is December 1, 2008. For further information, please contact Prof. Tonguz.

A Recent Paper Ranked in the Top 10 Most Accessed Articles List in the IEEE Wireless Communications Magazine


A recent CMU-GM paper published by Prof. Tonguz and his PhD student Hsin-Mu (Michael) Tsai in the IEEE Wireless Communications Magazine in December 2007 made the TOP 10 ARTICLES list in the most accessed documents of IEEE Wireless Communications Magazine in the month of April 2008 [PDF]. The paper co-authored by GM researchers Cem Saraydar, Tim Talty, and Andrew Macdonald reports the results of a comprehensive experimental study on the use of ZigBee technology for building an intra-car wireless sensor network.

As the number of sensors used in contemporary cars are rapidly increasing, there is a growing interest in replacing the wires used to connect these sensors to the CAN network with wireless technology. It is anticipated that the success of this research effort could lead to: 1) an open network architecture for placing more sensors in future cars; 2) better fuel efficiency because of the reduction in weight of cars; 3) a possible reduction in the overall cost of cars.



Prof. Tonguz will be chairing IEEE INFOCOM MOVE (MObile Networking for Vehicular Environments) Workshop 2008 in Phoenix, AZ, US on April 18, 2008. The workshop will include contributions focusing on vehicular ad hoc networks (VANET), vehicle-to-infrastructure (V2I), infrastructure-to-vehicle (I2V), and vehicle-to-vehicle (V2V) communications and networking. Please see the workshop website here.