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Enabling Multi-hop Forwarding in 6LoWPANs through Software-Defined Networking

03/18/2019
by   Giacomo Tanganelli, et al.
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Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) play a major role in the expansion of the Internet of Things (IoT) market as they allow the deployment of low cost and low power networks possibly in large areas. The introduction of the 6LoWPAN standard allowed WSN to move into the IPv6 era, with a seamless integration of sensors into external networks. The recent application of IoT in industrial systems is now introducing new traffic patterns - machine to machine (M2M) above the others - and communication challenges that can modify the classical multipoint-to-point pattern of WSN, having the sink as the root of every communication. To solve these problems, we propose an architecture to enable an efficient and controlled multi-hop forwarding over 6LoWPANs. We base our approach on the standard 6LoWPAN protocol stack and we exploit the Software Defined Networking paradigm to achieve network reconfigurability. We evaluate the performance of our architecture in a simulated environment, with both multipoint-to-point and M2M traffic, and we demonstrate its feasibility in a real testbed.

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