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Ph.D. Dissertation Summary

A new industrial revolution with an emphasis on the tight interaction between cyber-physical systems, Internet-of-Things, cloud computing and machine intelligence is here. Engineering wireless communication systems to support the communication requirements of interactive and immersive applications will open up possibilities such as exoskeletons for health-care, inter-vehicle communication for self-driving cars and traffic management, robotics and factory automation, virtual and augmented reality, the smart grid and drone swarms. The operating region (in terms of latency and reliability) for high-performance immersive applications is very different from current technologies like WiFi and $4$G where the main focus has been to increase spectral efficiency in the low-reliability, moderate-latency regime.

A motivating example for low-latency and high-reliability communication is industrial control where the communication requirements of high-reliability and low-latency are supported by wired fieldbus systems such as SERCOS III. The parameters associated with such applications include network sizes of 10 - 100 nodes, a steady stream of short control and sensor packets of about 10 - 50 bytes and latency of about 1ms. They also require that the probability that a packet doesn't reach its destination before the deadline does not exceed 10-9. My thesis addresses the problem of engineering a drop-in wireless replacement for these wired communication systems. The four main goals of our design are the following: a) communication has to be ultra-reliable, b) the low-latency requirements have to be met, c) the design has to be practically implementable, and d) the protocol should scale well with increasing network size.

The main results of the thesis are the following:

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