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Ultra Low-Latency, Low-Power Wireless Mesh Networks

Reference number
Start and end dates
Amount granted
2 674 351 SEK
Administrative organization
Chalmers University of Technology
Research area
Information, Communication and Systems Technology


Wireless networking for Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) and the Internet of Things (IoT) poses unique challenges: Many applications in, for example, the automotive industry, health care and manufacturing are mission or safety critical and have stringent deadlines. In cooperative driving, for example, autonomous vehicles have to wirelessly coordinate their planned trajectories within milliseconds when approaching an intersection or changing a lane. Such applications demand reliable wireless networking at a message latency and energy efficiency that today's approaches cannot provide. I propose to help usher the paradigm shift to wireless safety-critical applications in CPS and IoT through three lines of disciplinary investigation, and show the impact of my results through a series of integrated demonstrators. First, I will devise robust, ultra-low latency communication protocols that radically depart from conventional approaches by exploiting synchronous transmissions. Second, the lower latency of my protocols will be a key enabler for designing low-power distributed computing solutions for this environment. Third, I will realize safety-critical applications such as wireless closed-loop control and cooperative driving to demonstrate the feasibility of my approach. I believe to achieve an improvement of more than two orders of magnitude over the state of the art and will match the demanding requirements of safety-critical applications in CPS and IoT.

Popular science description

Access to the Internet and communication is a key driving force in our modern society. Today, connectivity and computing come to physical objects and places: Even traditionally simple objects such as step counters, thermostats, and light bulbs begin to enjoy wireless communication. Similarly, cars, production lines and medical equipment will become networked. The demand for reliable distributed-computing and wireless networking which can’t be provided by today's routing and networking. In this project, we will develop new approaches to wireless networking and distributed computing which will close this gap. Predictions indicate that smart, connected objects soon will outnumber today's traditional connected devices such as smartphones or PCs. By 2025 we expect to reach 50 billion connected devices. These are so-called Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS) and Internet of Things (IoT) and they aim to make our daily lives easier, safer, and more sustainable. Cyber Physical Systems and the Internet of Things monitor and interact with the physical world and allow for new applications such as smart power grids, intelligent transportation, or advanced automation in factories and homes. Many of these applications are mission and safety-critical: For example, when two autonomous vehicles approach an intersection, they have to coordinate within a split second on which car shall cross first. Similarly, a wireless glucose sensor must quickly and reliably exchange information with, for example, an insulin pump to ensure a patient’s well being. Any wireless network connecting such safety-critical devices must be fast, reliable, and often also energy-efficient, as many devices are battery powered and we expect them to last for many years. Today’s approaches maintain routes in the network and external factors such as, for example, interference and mobility, force the network to constantly repair these routes. If a route cannot be repaired sufficiently fast, messages will be delayed and potentially lost. In this project we will base on a novel approach to wireless networking: using our novel transmission scheme we ensure that if there is a route towards a destination it will be found instantly even in presence of interference and mobility. Our results will allow wireless networking with fast delivery of data at a reliability, and energy-efficiency that future wireless safety-critical applications demand.