MobilityFirst Future Internet Architecture Project



Quick News

NSF Press Release on FIA-NP Awards




ACM MobiArch2013 Best Paper Award

" Network Service Abstractions for a Mobility-Centric Future Internet Architecture"

Overview Talks

Mobile Internet talk at IEEE 5G Forum, Princeton, NJ. May 2015

Johannesburg Summit Talk on Cellular-Internet Convergence, May 2013

IEEE Talk on MobilityFirst Architecture, IIT Kgp, Sept 2012

PIMRC2011 Keynote Talk on MobilityFirst Architecture,

D. Raychaudhuri

Sept 2011

Selected Papers


MobilityFirst 5G Next-Generation Mobile Network White Paper


MobilityFirst Architecture Overview Paper, ACM CCR 2014

Realizing Advanced Mobility Services with MF , IEEE Comsnets 2015


MobilityFirst Protocol Design Paper, ACM MC2R, 2012

Brief Architecture Summary Paper - ACM AINTech 2011

Global Name Resolution Service (GNRS) Paper - Proc. ICDCS 2012

Generalized Storage Aware Routing (GSTAR) Paper - ACM MobiArch 2011

Comparison of MobilityFirst with Named Data Networking (NDN) - NOMEN Workshop 2012

Wireless Access Network Perspective for MobilityFirst Architecture - IEEE Sarnoff Symposium 2012

Internet-of-Things (IoT) Use Case for MobilityFirst - IoT W3 ET 2012

The MobilityFirst project was started in 2010 with funding from the National Science Foundation's Future Internet Architecture (FIA) program.  The first phase of the FIA project was carried out from 2010-14 and resulted in a new clean-slate mobility-centric architecture called MobilityFirst (MF) along with a prototype realization of the protocol stack.  The MobilityFirst project moved to the second stage with a $5M grant under NSF's Future Internet Architecture - Next Phase (FIA-NP) program announced in May 2014.  The FIA-NP project is aimed at design and evaluation of enchanced network services using the MobilityFirst protocol stack with a particular focus on the mobile data, content and internet-of-things use cases.  Another focus for the FIA-NP project is cellular-Internet convergence, with the goal of having a single unified Internet architecture which supports the needs of cellular systems including both 4G hetnet and 5G.  The project also aims to move from experimental testbed evaluation to technology trials with real-world users and applications.

Project Summary

The MobilityFirst project is founded on the premise that the Internet is approaching an historic inflection point, with mobile platforms and applications poised to replace the fixed-host/server model that has dominated the Internet since its inception. This predictable, yet fundamental, shift presents a unique opportunity to design a next generation Internet in which mobile devices, and applications, and the consequent changes in service, trustworthiness, and management are primary drivers of a new architecture. The major design goals of our proposed architecture are: mobility as the norm with dynamic host and network mobility at scale; robustness with respect to intrinsic properties of wireless medium; trustworthiness in the form of enhanced security and privacy for both mobile networks and wired infrastructure; usability features such as support for context-aware pervasive mobile services, evolvable network services, manageability and economic viability. The design is also informed by technology factors such as radio spectrum scarcity, wired bandwidth abundance, continuing Moore’s law improvements to computing, and energy constraints in mobile and sensor devices.



The key components of the MobilityFirst network architecture are: (1) separation of naming and addressing, implemented via a fast global dynamic name resolution service; (2) self-certifying public key network addresses to support strong authentication and security; (3) generalized delay-tolerant routing with in-network storage for packets in transit; (4) flat-label internetwork routing with public key addresses; (5) hop-by-hop transport protocols operating over path segments rather than an end-end path; (6) a separate network management plane that provides enhanced visibility; (7) optional privacy features for user and location data; and (8) an integrated computing and storage layer at routers to support programmability and evolution of enhanced network services. The architecture as a whole has been designed to be implementable with reasonable complexity, and to offer good scalability and performance. Although the proposed design has its “sweet spot” in large-scale mobile networking, its innovations and benefits will be enjoyed within the wired core as well, via enhanced security and robustness.

The FIA-NP project is a collaborative effort involving Rutgers, UMass, MIT, Duke, U Michigan, U Wisconsin, and U Nebraska with interaction with several industrial research partners. The project is organized into a set of research tasks and a set of technology trial tasks as summarized below:

   Research Tasks:

   R1.  Advanced GNS-based services

   R2.  Security and privacy

   R3. Content services

   R4. Next-generation mobile cloud services

   R5. Context aware services

   R6. Cellular-Internet convergence

   R7. SDN ready protocol design

   R8. Technology platforms and deployment strategies

   Technology Trial Tasks:

   T1. MF protocol updates and benchmarking on research testbeds including ORBIT and GENI

   T2. NE1: Network Environment 1, mobile data and cloud services in heterogeneous access networks

   T3. NE2: Network Environment 2, content networking for broadcast production and distribution

   T4. NE3. Network Environment 3, context-aware services for emergency warning applications




D. Raychaudhuri*+

Wade Trappe

Roy Yates

Richard Martin

Yanyong Zhang

Ivan Seskar

Kiran Nagaraja

UMass - Amherst

Arun Venkataramani#+

Jim Kurose

Prashant Shenoy


Z. Morley Mao+

Duke University

Xaiowei Yang+


Bill Lehr+

U Wisconsin

Suman Banerjee+

U Nebraska

Byrav Ramamurthy+


*Principal Investigator

#Lead Architect

+ Site lead

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