Software-defined Networking for Real-time Ethernet

Jia Lei Du and Matthias Herlich (2016): Software-defined Networking for Real-time Ethernet In: Proceedings of the 13th International Conference on Informatics in Control, Automation and Robotics (ICINCO).

Real-time Ethernet is used in many industrial and embedded systems, but has so far mostly been statically configured. However, in the future these network configurations will be required to change dynamically, for example for highly flexible production lines or even software upgrades in modern cars that add new features which require changes to the in-vehicle network. Software-defined networking (SDN) is already increasingly used to dynamically configure non-real-time networks. In this paper we explore the idea of a software-defined real-time Ethernet. We analyze the features of current real-time Ethernet protocols, the applicability of SDN and give an overview of potential advantages of software-defined networking for realtime communication which can enable features not achievable using current solutions. In the future this development will likely lead to more flexible, efficient and robust real-time networks.

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