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Special Issue "Design and Implementation of Future CPS"

A special issue of Sensors (ISSN 1424-8220). This special issue belongs to the section "Sensor Networks".

Deadline for manuscript submissions: closed (31 October 2018)

Special Issue Editors

Guest Editor
Dr. Nuno Pereira

Dept. of Computer Engineering (DEI), Polytechnic of Porto (ISEP/IPP), 4249-015 Porto, Portugal
Website | E-Mail
Interests: CPS; embedded systems; distributed systems
Guest Editor
Prof. Dr. Mário Alves

Politécnico do Porto, School of Engineering (ISEP/IPP), Rua Dr. António Bernardino de Almeida, 431, 4249-015 Porto, Portugal
Website | E-Mail
Phone: +351-22-834-0500
Interests: QoS (reliability, timeliness, mobility) in low-power wireless networks, sensor/actuator networks, cyber-physical systems
Guest Editor
Dr. José Ramiro Martínez-De-Dios

Department of Automation and Systems Engineering, University of Seville, Sevilla, Spain
Website 1 | Website 2 | E-Mail
Phone: (34) 954487357
Fax: (34) 954487340
Interests: robot perception, cooperative perception, multi-robot systems, robot–sensor network cooperation, localization/mapping, SLAM, aerial robots

Special Issue Information

Dear Colleagues,

There is a strong trend for ubiquitous computing devices and objects that proliferate throughout our environment, homes, streets, buildings and even in our bodies. These tiny sensor/actuator systems pave the way for the realm of the (Internet of things) IoT and offer an unprecedented capability to sense and actuate in the physical world. In this context, we can observe important advances being introduced to the communication and computing infrastructure that bring new and specific challenges.

The last decade has seen significant progress towards connecting intelligent embedded devices to the Cloud through the Internet. While the Cloud infrastructure allows for resource-constrained devices to benefit from their seemingly infinite resources, there are significant challenges to support applications that generate very large amounts of data, may experience discontinuous Internet connectivity, or require a tight interconnection with the physical world, such as the more traditional Cyber-Physical Systems (CPS)—smart buildings, smart vehicles, smart industrial and mobile robots, industrial manufacturing—but also emerging applications such as interactive mixed reality systems and advanced cooperative autonomous robotic systems.

In fact, the conceptualization of robots—industrial robots and also ground and/or aerial mobile robots—as CPS has enabled their cooperation with and integration within IoT technologies, coining terms such as "Ubiquitous robotics" or "Cloud robotics", the implementation of which has enabled unprecedented perception and/or actuation capabilities and advantages in a wide range of industrial and service robotic applications.

Researchers and practitioners have been increasingly interested in bringing significant computing and storage closer to the local ("edge") devices such as gateways, PCs, mobile phones, sensors and actuators—a paradigm called "Edge Computing". At the level of wireless communication technologies to support CPS applications, we also see important advances in future ultra-low latency wireless first-hop and other advanced (Quality of Service) QoS features proposed for 5G networks. Finally, the trend to virtualize network resources and functionality through Software Defined Networking (SDN) and Network Functions Virtualization (NFV) continues to advance, and can be an important enabler to lower the complexity and technical difficulties involved in designing and deploying future CPS systems.

These are examples of advances that we need to pull together in order to address fundamental challenges, technologies and emerging directions in the design and implementation of future CPS.

In this Special Issue, we are particularly interested in works that exploit these recent trends for promoting the capabilities of future CPS-inspired applications, including Internet of Things, sensor networks, mobile devices, autonomous systems, or vehicular networks.

This special issue welcomes Surveys and Position papers. Suggested topics include, but are not limited to, the following:

  • Fundamental aspects and design principles tackling opposing factors (mobility, latency, capability and privacy), common in emerging CPS;
  • Novel applications and requirements in CPS-inspired applications (e.g., interactive mixed reality, advanced ubiquitous robotic systems, cloud robotic systems);
  • Novel architectures for CPS, embracing recent trends (e.g., considering QoS from the network edge to the Cloud, locality to data sources and network infrastructure virtualization);
  • Resource allocation and management of future CPS;
  • Techniques, algorithms and methods of processing data;
  • New communication and networking protocols for future CPS;
  • Programming models and toolkits for supporting the development and test of future CPS;
  • Trust, privacy and security aspects in future CPS;
  • Simulation, testbeds and performance evaluation for CPS;
  • Emerging trends in Industrial CPS.

Dr. Nuno Pereira
Prof. Dr. Mário Alves
Prof. Dr. J.R. Martínez de Dios
Guest Editors

Manuscript Submission Information

Manuscripts should be submitted online at www.mdpi.com by registering and logging in to this website. Once you are registered, click here to go to the submission form. Manuscripts can be submitted until the deadline. All papers will be peer-reviewed. Accepted papers will be published continuously in the journal (as soon as accepted) and will be listed together on the special issue website. Research articles, review articles as well as short communications are invited. For planned papers, a title and short abstract (about 100 words) can be sent to the Editorial Office for announcement on this website.

Submitted manuscripts should not have been published previously, nor be under consideration for publication elsewhere (except conference proceedings papers). All manuscripts are thoroughly refereed through a single-blind peer-review process. A guide for authors and other relevant information for submission of manuscripts is available on the Instructions for Authors page. Sensors is an international peer-reviewed open access semimonthly journal published by MDPI.

Please visit the Instructions for Authors page before submitting a manuscript. The Article Processing Charge (APC) for publication in this open access journal is 1800 CHF (Swiss Francs). Submitted papers should be well formatted and use good English. Authors may use MDPI's English editing service prior to publication or during author revisions.

Published Papers (6 papers)

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Research

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Open AccessArticle Integration of a Mobile Node into a Hybrid Wireless Sensor Network for Urban Environments
Sensors 2019, 19(1), 215; https://doi.org/10.3390/s19010215
Received: 27 October 2018 / Revised: 19 December 2018 / Accepted: 20 December 2018 / Published: 8 January 2019
PDF Full-text (11378 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Robots, or in general, intelligent vehicles, require large amounts of data to adapt their behavior to the environment and achieve their goals. When their missions take place in large areas, using additional information to that gathered by the onboard sensors frequently offers a [...] Read more.
Robots, or in general, intelligent vehicles, require large amounts of data to adapt their behavior to the environment and achieve their goals. When their missions take place in large areas, using additional information to that gathered by the onboard sensors frequently offers a more efficient solution of the problem. The emergence of Cyber-Physical Systems and Cloud computing allows this approach, but integration of sensory information, and its effective availability for the robots or vehicles is challenging. This paper addresses the development and implementation of a modular mobile node of a Wireless Sensor Network (WSN), designed to be mounted onboard vehicles, and capable of using different sensors according to mission needs. The mobile node is integrated with an existing static network, transforming it into a Hybrid Wireless Sensor Network (H-WSN), and adding flexibility and range to it. The integration is achieved without the need for multi-hop routing. A database holds the data acquired by both mobile and static nodes, allowing access in real-time to the gathered information. A Human–Machine Interface (HMI) presents this information to users. Finally, the system is tested in real urban scenarios in a use-case of measurement of gas levels. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Design and Implementation of Future CPS)
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Open AccessArticle A Robust Approach to TDMA Synchronization in Aerial Networks
Sensors 2018, 18(12), 4497; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18124497
Received: 10 November 2018 / Revised: 13 December 2018 / Accepted: 15 December 2018 / Published: 19 December 2018
PDF Full-text (3163 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) can be a powerful tool for live (interactive) remote inspection of large-scale structures or areas of interest. Instead of manual, local, and labor-intensive inspections, we envision human operators working together with networks of semi-autonomous UAVs. The current state-of-the-art for [...] Read more.
Unmanned Aerial Vehicles (UAVs) can be a powerful tool for live (interactive) remote inspection of large-scale structures or areas of interest. Instead of manual, local, and labor-intensive inspections, we envision human operators working together with networks of semi-autonomous UAVs. The current state-of-the-art for low-delay high-throughput inter-vehicle networking relies on Time-Division Multiple Access (TDMA) techniques that require accurate synchronization among all network nodes. In this paper, we propose a delay-tolerant synchronization approach that converges to the correct order of the TDMA slots implemented over COTS WiFi in a fully-distributed way and without resorting to a global clock. This highly flexible solution allows building an ad-hoc aerial network based on a backbone of relaying UAVs. We show several alternatives to achieve this synchronization in a concrete aerial network and compare them in terms of slots’ overlap, throughput, and packet delivery. The results show that these alternatives lead to trade-offs in the referenced metrics. The results also provide insight into the delays caused by buffering in the protocol stack and especially in the WiFi interface. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Design and Implementation of Future CPS)
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Open AccessFeature PaperArticle Future Spaces: Reinventing the Home Network for Better Security and Automation in the IoT Era
Sensors 2018, 18(9), 2986; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18092986
Received: 24 July 2018 / Revised: 30 August 2018 / Accepted: 5 September 2018 / Published: 7 September 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (6450 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Cyber-Physical Systems (CPSs) are complex systems comprising computation, physical, and networking assets. Used in various domains such as manufacturing, agriculture, vehicles, etc., they blend the control of the virtual and physical worlds. Smart homes are a peculiar type of CPS where the local [...] Read more.
Cyber-Physical Systems (CPSs) are complex systems comprising computation, physical, and networking assets. Used in various domains such as manufacturing, agriculture, vehicles, etc., they blend the control of the virtual and physical worlds. Smart homes are a peculiar type of CPS where the local networking fundamentals have seen little evolution in the past decades, while the context in which home networks operate has drastically evolved. With the advent of the Internet of Things (IoT), the number and diversity of devices connected to our home networks are exploding. Some of those devices are poorly secured and put users’ data privacy and security at risk. At the same time, administrating a home network has remained a tedious chore, requiring skills from un-savvy users. We present Future Spaces, an end-to-end hardware-software prototype providing fine-grained control over IoT connectivity to enable easy and secure management of smart homes. Relying on Software-Defined Networking-enabled home gateways and the virtualization of network functions in the cloud, we achieve advanced networking security and automation through the definition of isolated, usage-oriented slices. This disrupts how users discover, control and share their connected assets across multiple domains, smoothly adapting to various usage contexts. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Design and Implementation of Future CPS)
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Open AccessArticle Implementation of Cyber-Physical Production Systems for Quality Prediction and Operation Control in Metal Casting
Sensors 2018, 18(5), 1428; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18051428
Received: 27 March 2018 / Revised: 13 April 2018 / Accepted: 25 April 2018 / Published: 4 May 2018
Cited by 7 | PDF Full-text (4279 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
The prediction of internal defects of metal casting immediately after the casting process saves unnecessary time and money by reducing the amount of inputs into the next stage, such as the machining process, and enables flexible scheduling. Cyber-physical production systems (CPPS) perfectly fulfill [...] Read more.
The prediction of internal defects of metal casting immediately after the casting process saves unnecessary time and money by reducing the amount of inputs into the next stage, such as the machining process, and enables flexible scheduling. Cyber-physical production systems (CPPS) perfectly fulfill the aforementioned requirements. This study deals with the implementation of CPPS in a real factory to predict the quality of metal casting and operation control. First, a CPPS architecture framework for quality prediction and operation control in metal-casting production was designed. The framework describes collaboration among internet of things (IoT), artificial intelligence, simulations, manufacturing execution systems, and advanced planning and scheduling systems. Subsequently, the implementation of the CPPS in actual plants is described. Temperature is a major factor that affects casting quality, and thus, temperature sensors and IoT communication devices were attached to casting machines. The well-known NoSQL database, HBase and the high-speed processing/analysis tool, Spark, are used for IoT repository and data pre-processing, respectively. Many machine learning algorithms such as decision tree, random forest, artificial neural network, and support vector machine were used for quality prediction and compared with R software. Finally, the operation of the entire system is demonstrated through a CPPS dashboard. In an era in which most CPPS-related studies are conducted on high-level abstract models, this study describes more specific architectural frameworks, use cases, usable software, and analytical methodologies. In addition, this study verifies the usefulness of CPPS by estimating quantitative effects. This is expected to contribute to the proliferation of CPPS in the industry. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Design and Implementation of Future CPS)
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Open AccessArticle A Model-Driven Co-Design Framework for Fusing Control and Scheduling Viewpoints
Sensors 2018, 18(2), 628; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18020628
Received: 12 December 2017 / Revised: 7 February 2018 / Accepted: 14 February 2018 / Published: 20 February 2018
PDF Full-text (2365 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text | Supplementary Files
Abstract
Model-Driven Engineering (MDE) is widely applied in the industry to develop new software functions and integrate them into the existing run-time environment of a Cyber-Physical System (CPS). The design of a software component involves designers from various viewpoints such as control theory, software [...] Read more.
Model-Driven Engineering (MDE) is widely applied in the industry to develop new software functions and integrate them into the existing run-time environment of a Cyber-Physical System (CPS). The design of a software component involves designers from various viewpoints such as control theory, software engineering, safety, etc. In practice, while a designer from one discipline focuses on the core aspects of his field (for instance, a control engineer concentrates on designing a stable controller), he neglects or considers less importantly the other engineering aspects (for instance, real-time software engineering or energy efficiency). This may cause some of the functional and non-functional requirements not to be met satisfactorily. In this work, we present a co-design framework based on timing tolerance contract to address such design gaps between control and real-time software engineering. The framework consists of three steps: controller design, verified by jitter margin analysis along with co-simulation, software design verified by a novel schedulability analysis, and the run-time verification by monitoring the execution of the models on target. This framework builds on CPAL (Cyber-Physical Action Language), an MDE design environment based on model-interpretation, which enforces a timing-realistic behavior in simulation through timing and scheduling annotations. The application of our framework is exemplified in the design of an automotive cruise control system. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Design and Implementation of Future CPS)
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Review

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Open AccessReview Securing Real-Time Internet-of-Things
Sensors 2018, 18(12), 4356; https://doi.org/10.3390/s18124356
Received: 21 October 2018 / Revised: 1 December 2018 / Accepted: 6 December 2018 / Published: 10 December 2018
Cited by 2 | PDF Full-text (797 KB) | HTML Full-text | XML Full-text
Abstract
Modern embedded and cyber-physical systems are ubiquitous. Many critical cyber-physical systems have real-time requirements (e.g., avionics, automobiles, power grids, manufacturing systems, industrial control systems, etc.). Recent developments and new functionality require real-time embedded devices to be connected to the Internet. This gives rise [...] Read more.
Modern embedded and cyber-physical systems are ubiquitous. Many critical cyber-physical systems have real-time requirements (e.g., avionics, automobiles, power grids, manufacturing systems, industrial control systems, etc.). Recent developments and new functionality require real-time embedded devices to be connected to the Internet. This gives rise to the real-time Internet-of-things (RT-IoT) that promises a better user experience through stronger connectivity and efficient use of next-generation embedded devices. However, RT-IoT are also increasingly becoming targets for cyber-attacks, which is exacerbated by this increased connectivity. This paper gives an introduction to RT-IoT systems, an outlook of current approaches and possible research challenges towards secure RT-IoT frameworks. Full article
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Design and Implementation of Future CPS)
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