Cyber Physical Systems

Organizations cannot survive in isolation or detached from its environment. The Internet of Things (IoT) is expected to offer advanced connectivity of devices, systems, and services that goes beyond machine-to-machine communications (M2M) and covers a variety of protocols, domains, and applications. The interconnection of these embedded devices, including smart objects, is expected to usher in automation in nearly all fields. Thus, Internet of Things is an enabler for the development of the organizations’ sensing capabilities, providing a great step towards completeness of physical and virtual sensing capabilities, in that, it seeks to make organizations aware of the global context in which they operate by collecting data from a variety of sources, using physical and virtual sensor networks amongst global data sources, processing the data collected and acting upon it, through the use of Cyber Physical Systems, amongst others tools for decision making.

A Cyber Physical System (CPS) can be defined as a system which “integrates computing, communication and storage capabilities with monitoring and control of entities in the physical world, and must do so dependably, safety, securely, efficiently and in real-time". The objectives behind the development of a CPS is the need for integration of “perception, communication, learning, behaviour generation and reasoning” capabilities in order to develop a “new generation of intelligent and autonomous systems”.

Although much of the technologies to develop Cyber Physical Systems already exist, the complexity behind such systems requires extended research work in a variety of disciplines including, but not limited to, networking, systems theory, software engineering, sensor technologies, etc. Even though the disciplines related to CPS are varied, they can however be grouped into the following general research areas: 1) New approaches related to formalisms and architectures which allow for interoperability between the various sub-systems within a CPS; 2) New frameworks, algorithms and methods related to time and event-driven computing software; 3) New models, algorithms and tools to verify and validate software components and the entire CPS.

A Cyber Physical System (CPS) can be defined as a system which “integrates computing, communication and storage capabilities with monitoring and control of entities in the physical world, and must do so dependably, safety, securely, efficiently and in real-time". The objectives behind the development of a CPS is the need for integration of “perception, communication, learning, behaviour generation and reasoning” capabilities in order to develop a “new generation of intelligent and autonomous systems”. Actually, embedded systems have existed for many years. However, making these systems intelligent and autonomous requires equipping them with aforementioned capabilities, which is not a small task. The deployment of sensor networks on a manufacturing line, to gather and collect data, as well as the exchange of data between manufacturing tools and other enterprise systems, would create a network between them. By adding some level of computational intelligence into manufacturing tools and robots, would transform them into cyber physical systems. Some examples of CPS applications include: Physical infrastructure monitoring and control; Medical devices and health management networks; Vehicular networks and smart highways; Electricity generation and distribution; Robotic manufacturing. the complexity behind CPS requires extended research work in a variety of disciplines including, but not limited to, networking, systems theory, software engineering, sensor technologies.