Engineering-Economic Evaluation of Diffractive Non-Line-Of-Sight Backhaul (e3nb): A Techno-economic Model for 3D Wireless Backhaul Assessment

by   Edward J. Oughton, et al.

Developing ways to affordably deliver broadband connectivity is one of the major issues of our time. In challenging deployment locations with irregular terrain, fiber optic or traditional Clear-Line-Of-Sight (CLOS) wireless links can be uneconomical to deploy, resulting from the number of required towers making infrastructure deployment unviable. With the emergence of new research focusing on developing wireless diffractive backhaul technologies to provide diffractive Non-Line-Of-Sight (NLOS) links, this paper evaluates the engineering-economic implications of such approaches. To quantify different technology strategies, a Three-Dimensional (3D) techno-economic assessment framework is presented to help prioritize regions for future investment in broadband connectivity, utilizing a combination of remote sensing and viewshed geospatial techniques. Such a method is an essential evaluation step prior to beginning detailed Radio Frequency (RF) Quality of Service engineering but has hitherto received less research attention in the literature. This framework is applied to assess both Clear-Line-Of-Sight and diffractive Non-Line-Of-Sight strategies for deployment in Peru, as well as the islands of Kalimantan and Papua, in Indonesia. The results find that a hybrid strategy combining the use of Clear-Line-Of-Sight and diffractive Non-Line-Of-Sight links produces a 15-43 percent cost-efficiency saving, relative to only using traditional Clear-Line-Of-Sight wireless backhaul links. The codebase is released opensource via the Engineering-Economic Evaluation of Non-Line-of-Sight Backhaul (e3nb) repository.



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