Exploiting Partially Overlapping Channels in Wireless Networks: Turning a Peril into an Advantage
Interference has always been considered as an unavoidable peril in wireless networks. A single data transmission is useful to some nodes and becomes interference to others. Based on channel of origin, interference can be categorized into co-channel (from transmissions on the same channel as the receiver) and adjacent-channel (transmissions on adjacent and overlapping channels).
In this paper, we define specific mechanisms that can transform partially overlapped channels into an advantage, instead of a peril. We construct simple analytical and empirical models of such interference occurring in IEEE 802.11 networks, and illustrate two scenarios where such interference can be exploited. First, we apply partially overlapping channels to improve spatial channel re-use in Wireless LANs (WLANs). Second, we leverage such channels to enable nodes with a single radio interface to communicate more efficiently with their peers in 802.11 ad-hoc mode potentially using multi-hop paths. We evaluate both capabilities through testbed measurements.