Software-defined networking in an industrial multi-radio access technology environment
The trend towards Industry 4.0 considers a wide range of new use cases in the context of the factory of the future. These new industrial applications range from augmented workspace applications which require high bandwidth wireless links to deliver information in nearly real-time to others which require seamless mobility and continuous connectivity for wirelessly connected automated guided vehicles (AGVs) to permanently communicate with a back end system. Several scenarios in the context of the factory of the future require ultra-fast and reliable wireless transmission together with real- time processing, e.g., analysis of video data in an Edge Cloud to minimize the delay. Accordingly, wireless connectivity is paving its way into the factories of the future to enable these new applications. Moreover, the concept of Software-Defined Networking (SDN), with the split of the control and data plane, seems a natural fit to programmatically orchestrate networks and slices in the factories of the future, with its vast range of requirements set by the aforementioned use cases.