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2004 : Wireless Real-Time Communication for Smart Transducer Networks

Author(s)
Bernhard Huber
Abstract
Due to the increasing demand for mobility and flexibility in the area of distributed control systems, wireless communication onwardly gain importance in automation engineering. However, especially in the field of real-time systems, wireless communication is not well established yet. A main reason therefore is the variable network structure caused by mobile communication nodes, which impairs predictability and dependability. Furthermore, the retransmission of erroneous data - a common approach in wireless networks - is not well-suited for real-time systems. This thesis describes the approach and the implementation of a wireless real-time communication protocol for the establishment of mobile smart transducer networks. The conceptual basis has been mainly inspired by TTP/A, a real-time communication protocol for non-safety critical sensor and actuator networks, which has been developed at the Vienna University of Technology. The wireless protocol is based on the time-triggered paradigm, which means that all communication activities are derived from the progression of physical time. A single dedicated master node is responsible for establishing a synchronized time base among all communication participants. This thesis presents a synchronization algorithm that is suitable for wireless communication networks. An important feature of the proposed algorithm, which highly enhances dependability, is the ability to tolerate certain failures of the master, the communication channel, and the communication links. Monitoring and configuration support of individual networked nodes is a crucial demand for distributed control applications. A fixed amount of bandwidth, assigned to the monitoring and configuration service, guarantees that the real-time service is not disturbed in any case. The design of the protocol aims at the use of commercial off-the-shelf components for implementation. The practicability of the proposed protocol is shown in a case study: An autonomous mobile robot, consisting of several smart transducer nodes, is used for the exploration of an indoor environment. The gathered information is transmitted to a host PC, where a representation of the environment is generated.
Bibtex
@mastersthesis{ huber:2004,
  author =      "Bernhard Huber",
  title =       "Wireless Real-Time Communication for Smart Transducer Networks",
  address =     "Treitlstr. 3/3/182-1, 1040 Vienna, Austria",
  school =      "Technische Universit{\"a}t Wien, Institut f{\"u}r Technische Informatik",
  year =        "2004"
}
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