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Title: Improving the reliability of optimised link state routing protocol in Smart Grid's neighbour area network
Author: Tsado, Yakubu
Awarding Body: Lancaster University
Current Institution: Lancaster University
Date of Award: 2017
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A reliable and resilient communication infrastructure that can cope with variable application traffic types and delay objectives is one of the prerequisites that differentiates a Smart Grid from the conventional electrical grid. However, the legacy communication infrastructure in the existing electrical grid is insufficient, if not incapable of satisfying the diverse communication requirements of the Smart Grid. The IEEE 802.11 ad hoc Wireless Mesh Network (WMN) is re-emerging as one of the communication networks that can significantly extend the reach of Smart Grid to backend devices through the Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI). However, the unique characteristics of AMI application traffic in the Smart Grid poses some interesting challenges to conventional communication networks including the ad hoc WMN. Hence, there is a need to modify the conventional ad hoc WMN, to address the uncertainties that may exist in its applicability in a Smart Grid environment. This research carries out an in-depth study of the communication of Smart Grid application traffic types over ad hoc WMN deployed in the Neighbour Area Network (NAN). It begins by conducting a critical review of the application characteristics and traffic requirements of several Smart Grid applications and highlighting some key challenges. Based on the reviews, and assuming that the application traffic types use the internet protocol (IP) as a transport protocol, a number of Smart Grid application traffic profiles were developed. Through experimental and simulation studies, a performance evaluation of an ad hoc WMN using the Optimised Link State Routing (OLSR) routing protocol was carried out. This highlighted some capacity and reliability issues that routing AMI application traffic may face within a conventional ad hoc WMN in a Smart Grid NAN. Given the fact that conventional routing solutions do not consider the traffic requirements when making routing decisions, another key observation is the inability of link metrics in routing protocols to select good quality links across multiple hops to a destination and also provide Quality of Service (QoS) support for target application traffic. As with most routing protocols, OLSR protocol uses a single routing metric acquired at the network layer, which may not be able to accommodate different QoS requirements for application traffic in Smart Grid. To address these problems, a novel multiple link metrics approach to improve the reliability performance of routing in ad hoc WMN when deployed for Smart Grid is presented. It is based on the OLSR protocol and explores the possibility of applying QoS routing for application traffic types in NAN based ad hoc WMN. Though routing in multiple metrics has been identified as a complex problem, Multi-Criteria Decision Making (MCDM) techniques such as the Analytical Hierarchy Process (AHP) and pruning have been used to perform such routing on wired and wireless multimedia applications. The proposed multiple metrics OLSR with AHP is used to offer the best available route, based on a number of considered metric parameters. To accommodate the variable application traffic requirements, a study that allows application traffic to use the most appropriate routing metric is presented. The multiple metrics development is then evaluated in Network Simulator 2.34; the simulation results demonstrate that it outperforms existing routing methods that are based on single metrics in OLSR. It also shows that it can be used to improve the reliability of application traffic types, thereby overcoming some weaknesses of existing single metric routing across multiple hops in NAN. The IEEE 802.11g was used to compare and analyse the performance of OLSR and the IEEE 802.11b was used to implement the multiple metrics framework which demonstrate a better performance than the single metric. However, the multiple metrics can also be applied for routing on different IEEE wireless standards, as well as other communication technologies such as Power Line Communication (PLC) when deployed in Smart Grid NAN.
Supervisor: Not available Sponsor: Not available
Qualification Name: Thesis (Ph.D.) Qualification Level: Doctoral