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Low Power Wireless Technologies for IIoT: Analysis and enhancement of communication delay, reliability and scalability
Mid Sweden University, Faculty of Science, Technology and Media, Department of Information Systems and Technology. (IST)ORCID iD: 0000-0001-5341-4133
2019 (English)Licentiate thesis, comprehensive summary (Other academic)
Abstract [en]

In recent years, the implementation of wireless communication systems in industrial environments has significantly increased. As a result, new applications such as Industrial Internet-of-Things (IIoT) have arisen, reshaping the future of industrial automation. Industrial environments, however, pose a demanding challenge for the implementation of wireless communication systems. IIoT applications have very stringent Quality of Service (QoS) requirements, in particular regarding energy consumption, timeliness, and reliability; and failing to fulfill the requirements could result in costly and dangerous system faults. Ranging from short to long range, the wide set of possible application cases within IIoT is based on different wireless technologies designed to excel in a certain scenario. A common aspect of these applications is the presence of energy-limited devices, and as a result, the development of low power technologies is becoming increasingly more important.

In this thesis, three specific low power wireless technologies are analyzed: Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE), Bluetooth Mesh, and LoRa. These three protocols target short, mid and long-range communication, respectively, thus providing the opportunity of exploring a wider set of application cases. The overall purpose of this thesis is to contribute to an extensive and well-rounded understanding of how these three technologies perform in terms of the scalability, reliability, and transmission delay. In particular, the aim is to determine their suitability for IIoT and to identify the key elements within their functional schemes that can be optimized to achieve improved performance.

The first part of the thesis explores the potential of BLE meeting real-time demands found in the domain of short-range IIoT. In order to evaluate the suitability of the protocol for these scenarios, we present an analytical model of the delay performance of BLE for connection-oriented configurations. We studied the effect of possible adaptations in the retransmission scheme on reliability and timeliness performance. Different retransmission schemes are evaluated and simulation results proved that by optimally modifying the BLE retransmission model, a maximum delay below 46 ms and a packet loss rate in the order of 10−5can be obtained. Therefore, BLE proved to be capable of fulfilling the requirements of even the most demanding cases within the considered range of applications.

The second part of the thesis evaluates the QoS performance and limitations of the recently released Bluetooth Mesh protocol through extensive simulations. We analyzed the impact of choosing different configurations of the protocol parameters on the end-to-end scalability, reliability and delay performance. In particular, we focused on the configuration of the Advertising Events and Scanning Events timing, including the ScanInterval and TinterPDU . Results revealed that the TinterPDU has to be chosen accordingly with the scanInterval and that it significantly impacts the end-to-end delay and reliability. Due to the flooding approach, larger TinterPDU resulted in a higher end-to-end packet loss rate. We demonstrated that, by introducing randomization in the time parameters, the reliability and delay performance can be greatly improved. It was also shown that the achievable average delay is relatively low, of around 250ms over 10 hops under the worst simulated network conditions. However, we observed that scalability is especially challenging for Bluetooth Mesh since it is particularly vulnerable to broadcast storm, hindering the communication reliability for denser deployments.

The third part of the thesis focuses on Low-Power Wide-Area Networks (LPWANs), in which LoRaWAN, with its physical (PHY) layer design and regulatory efforts, has emerged as a widely adopted solution. By using chirp spread spectrum modulation with quasi-orthogonal spreading factors (SFs), LoRa PHY offers coverage to wide-area applications while supporting a high density of devices. We present an analytical model of a single-cell LoRa system that accounts for the impact of interference among transmissions over the same SF (co-SF) as well as different SFs(inter-SF). The latter is a result of the imperfect orthogonality of the SFs. By modeling the interference field as a Poisson point process under duty-cycled ALOHA, we derived the signal-to-interference ratio (SIR) distributions for several interference conditions. Results indicate that, for a duty cycle as low as 0.33%, the network performance under co-SF interference alone is considerably optimistic, as the inclusion of inter-SF interference unveils a further drop in the success probability and the coverage probability of approximately 10% and 15%. In conclusion, we illustrate how our analysis can characterize the critical device density with respect to cell size for agiven reliability target.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
Sundsvall: Mid Sweden University , 2019. , p. 80
Series
Mid Sweden University licentiate thesis, ISSN 1652-8948 ; 158
National Category
Engineering and Technology
Identifiers
URN: urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-36202ISBN: 978-91-88947-04-8 (print)OAI: oai:DiVA.org:miun-36202DiVA, id: diva2:1317468
Presentation
2019-06-10, M102, Sundsvall, 13:00 (English)
Opponent
Supervisors
Projects
SMART (Smarta system och tjänster för ett effektivt och innovativt samhälle)
Note

Vid tidpunkten för framläggningen av avhandlingen var följande delarbete opublicerat: delarbete 3 manuskript.

At the time of the defence the following paper was unpublished: paper 3 manuscript.

Available from: 2019-05-23 Created: 2019-05-22 Last updated: 2019-06-13Bibliographically approved
List of papers
1. An Analytical Model of the Effective Delay Performance for Bluetooth Low Energy
Open this publication in new window or tab >>An Analytical Model of the Effective Delay Performance for Bluetooth Low Energy
2016 (English)In: IEEE 27th International Symposium on Personal, Indoor and Mobile Radio Communications (PIMRC'17), Valencia, Spain, Sept. 2016., IEEE, 2016, p. 6-11, article id 7794553Conference paper, Published paper (Refereed)
Abstract [en]

With the uprising trend of the integration of wireless sensing systems in fields such as health care and industrial processes, where information exchange between power-limited devices is required, lower energy consumption and Quality of Service demands are becoming more stringent. Bluetooth LowEnergy is a promising technology that provides, besides ultra-low energy properties, compatibility with most mobile units. However,apart from power efficiency, opportune and reliable information delivery is mandatory in time-critical applications. In this paper we propose an analytical model of the delay performance of Bluetooth Low Energy for connection-oriented applications under different bit error conditions. In addition to the physical over-the-air latency, we also analyze the effect of the occurrence time of an Application Layer event on the effective transmission delay. We highlight the impact of the device’s processing speed and the timing configuration of the connectionon the final measured latency. Simulation results validate the accuracy of the model for all the analyzed cases.

Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
IEEE, 2016
Keywords
Bluetooth Low Energy, BER, PER, Delay, Markov chain
National Category
Communication Systems Telecommunications Computer Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-29075 (URN)10.1109/PIMRC.2016.7794553 (DOI)000391598800002 ()2-s2.0-85010081532 (Scopus ID)STC (Local ID)978-1-5090-3254-9 (ISBN)STC (Archive number)STC (OAI)
Conference
IEEE 27th International Symposium on Personal, Indoor and Mobile Radio Communications (PIMRC'17), Valencia, Spain, 4-8 Sept. 2016.
Projects
TIMELINESS
Funder
Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2016-10-10 Created: 2016-10-10 Last updated: 2019-05-22Bibliographically approved
2. Evaluating Bluetooth Low Energy Suitability for Time-Critical Industrial IoT Applications
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Evaluating Bluetooth Low Energy Suitability for Time-Critical Industrial IoT Applications
2017 (English)In: International Journal of Wireless Information Networks, ISSN 1068-9605, E-ISSN 1572-8129, Vol. 24, no 3, p. 278-290Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

In recent years, integration of wireless sensornetworks in industrial environments has greatly increased. With this trend, new fields such as industrial IoT have arisen, which in turn have opened the doors to new possibilities that are shaping the future of industrial automation. In contrast to regular wireless networks, however, industrial applications of WSN are characterized for being time-critical systems with highly stringent requirements that challenge all available technologies. Because of its ultra-low energy properties, compatibility with most mobile units, reduced production costs, robustness and hight hroughput, Bluetooth low energy (BLE) is a potential candidate for these settings. This article explores thepotential of BLE of meeting the real-time demands foundin the domain of industrial process automation and industrial IoT. In order to evaluate the suitability of the protocol for these scenarios, the effect of adaptations in the retransmission scheme on the reliability and timeliness performance are thoroughly studied. Three retransmission schemes are evaluated and simulation results proved that by optimally modifying the BLE retransmission model, a maximum delay below 46 ms and a packet loss rate in the order of 105 can be obtained, enabling BLE to fulfill the requirements of even the most demanding cases within the considered range of applications.

Keywords
Bluetooth Low energy, real-time, Industrial IoT, IWSN
National Category
Communication Systems Telecommunications Computer Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-30784 (URN)10.1007/s10776-017-0357-0 (DOI)000408204600009 ()2-s2.0-85019942832 (Scopus ID)STC (Local ID)STC (Archive number)STC (OAI)
Projects
SMART (Smarta system och tjänster för ett effektivt och innovativt samhälle)Timeliness
Funder
EU, European Research CouncilKnowledge Foundation
Available from: 2017-05-29 Created: 2017-05-29 Last updated: 2019-06-13Bibliographically approved
3. Understanding the Performance of Bluetooth Mesh: Reliability, Delayand Scalability Analysis
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Understanding the Performance of Bluetooth Mesh: Reliability, Delayand Scalability Analysis
(English)Manuscript (preprint) (Other academic)
National Category
Communication Systems Telecommunications Computer Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-36203 (URN)
Available from: 2019-05-23 Created: 2019-05-23 Last updated: 2019-05-23Bibliographically approved
4. Scalability Analysis of a LoRa Network under Imperfect Orthogonality
Open this publication in new window or tab >>Scalability Analysis of a LoRa Network under Imperfect Orthogonality
Show others...
2019 (English)In: IEEE Transactions on Industrial Informatics, ISSN 1551-3203, E-ISSN 1941-0050, Vol. 15, no 3, p. 1425-1436Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract [en]

Low-power wide-area network (LPWAN) technologies are gaining momentum for internet-of-things (IoT) applications since they promise wide coverage to a massive number of battery-operated devices using grant-free medium access. LoRaWAN, with its physical (PHY) layer design and regulatory efforts, has emerged as the widely adopted LPWAN solution. By using chirp spread spectrum modulation with qausi-orthogonal spreading factors (SFs), LoRa PHY offers coverage to wide-area applications while supporting high-density of devices. However, thus far its scalability performance has been inadequately modeled and the effect of interference resulting from the imperfect orthogonality of the SFs has not been considered. In this paper, we present an analytical model of a single-cell LoRa system that accounts for the impact of interference among transmissions over the same SF (co-SF) as well as different SFs (inter-SF). By modeling the interference field as Poisson point process under duty-cycled ALOHA, we derive the signal-to-interference ratio (SIR) distributions for several interference conditions. Results show that, for a duty cycle as low as 0.33%, the network performance under co-SF interference alone is considerably optimistic as the inclusion of inter-SF interference unveils a further drop in the success probability and the coverage probability of approximately 10% and 15%, respectively for 1500 devices in a LoRa channel. Finally, we illustrate how our analysis can characterize the critical device density with respect to cell size for a given reliability target.

Keywords
IoT, low-power wide-area networks, LoRaWAN, interference, stochastic geometry
National Category
Communication Systems Telecommunications Computer Engineering
Identifiers
urn:nbn:se:miun:diva-34280 (URN)10.1109/TII.2018.2864681 (DOI)000460580100018 ()
Projects
TIMELINESSSMART
Funder
European Regional Development Fund (ERDF)Knowledge Foundation
Available from: 2018-08-20 Created: 2018-08-20 Last updated: 2019-05-22Bibliographically approved

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