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Type: Thesis
Title: A Dynamic Spectrum Access Framework (Bring Your Own Spectrum)
Author: Tripathi, Madhulika
Issue Date: 2020
School/Discipline: School of Electrical and Electronic Engineering
Abstract: In this thesis, a unified and sustainable framework for spectrum allocation is presented. This multi-level operator-agnostic framework, Bring Your Own Spectrum (BYOS), is the result of a few thought experiments reflecting the ways in which spectrum could be bought and sold as an asset, similar to service models in cloud computing where every technical element can be traded via an "as-a-Service" model. BYOS architectural features form the major part of this thesis and cover four levels of abstraction as – contextual, conceptual, logical and physical. First, the contextual aspect of BYOS is covered, which addresses the question: "why is the framework needed?". To understand the reasons behind the need for a new framework an exhaustive survey of history of telecommunications policy development of 32 countries was conducted that included major economies in several key regions of the world. This research provided insight into the role of the government, mechanisms used for allocations, success/failure of allocations, and business models in the sector. Additionally, a review of existing and emerging technologies was done to understand various possible mechanisms of spectrum access. Next, the conceptual aspect of BYOS is presented, which addresses the question: "what does the framework look like?". For this, the information from the study above was converted into a skeleton framework, ensuring that it covers the requirements gathered. The framework has a three-level architecture with a quasi-static allocation scheme. The levels of architecture are designated based on periods of ownership and the thesis presents an original exponential-based-scale to determine the allocation periods (longest to shortest). The framework accommodates different types of operators, categorising in terms of their spectrum access privileges. Following this, the thesis focuses on the physical level of the framework, where the question: "with what?" i.e. the technical mechanisms are discussed. In this part, a novel analogy is presented where the wireless spectrum is compared to a multi-lane, multi-level highway. This analogy provides the basis for unit of information transport between two points, which in turn form the trading unit. In this thesis, "Interference (transmission power) spread over bandwidth" is chosen as the basic trading unit for the BYOS framework. Also included is a discussion on the required changes to the calculation of "population" – an inherent part of reserve price calculation – in view of the proliferation of device using different types of mobile technologies. A second part of the physical framework presents an original mechanism for competition management in view of the new framework and trading unit. Using the principles of network traffic management, a new tracking unit – token – is introduced, which helps the regulators keep track of the process of spectrum allocation, but in a hands-off manner. Multiple models of using tokens in the framework are presented. Tokens are intended only for the shortterm trades, though the initial number is determined by the total spectrum acquisitions and cumulative participation behaviour. Finally, the logical or system model of the framework is presented, which addresses the question: "how to structure and organise the architecture to achieve the desired requirements". This discussion is also divided into two parts. First, the discussion focuses on the multiple ways to use tokens and demonstrates the different use cases by way of competition games. Key novel points here are the discussion of competition management over multi-period allocation and addressing the needs of public safety services. Additionally, the discussion also focuses on unequal desirability of available spectrum lots based on spectrum characteristics, acquisition periods, and operator’s own requirements. The second part of the discussion focuses on various methods of implementation of this framework. A potential enterpriseblockchain based method is explored, though there may be other better solutions. Another focus of this thesis, which can be considered as a separate minor segment, came out of the initial policy research was to organize and analyse this information systematically. For this purpose, the theory of policy diffusion was explored, and the research provides evidence for the existence of, and analyses the mechanisms used for policy diffusion in different regions and countries.
Advisor: Sorell, Matthew
Phillips, Braden
Dissertation Note: Thesis (Ph.D.) -- University of Adelaide, School of Electrical and Electronics, 2020
Keywords: spectrum auctions
spectrum trading
dynamic spectrum access
smart contracts
spectrum policy
policy diffusion
interference trading
spectrum games
Provenance: This electronic version is made publicly available by the University of Adelaide in accordance with its open access policy for student theses. Copyright in this thesis remains with the author. This thesis may incorporate third party material which has been used by the author pursuant to Fair Dealing exceptions. If you are the owner of any included third party copyright material you wish to be removed from this electronic version, please complete the take down form located at:
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