Assessing Long Distance Communication Alternatives for the Remote Control of AGVs
Peer reviewed, Journal article
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OriginalversjonIEEE Conference on Emerging Technologies and Factory Automation. 2020, 1 69-76. 10.1109/ETFA46521.2020.9211954
Remote monitoring and control of factory equipment promises a more streamlined and therefore less expensive system operation and maintenance. The geographical distance between a factory and its control center, however, may influence the Quality of Service parameters of the network connections which might stymie the overall control process. To get a better understanding of these potential issues and their impact, we conducted a series of measurements over varying distances for the remote control, operation and simulation of Automated Guided Vehicles (AGVs) that are often used in modern factory environments. To achieve these tests, we defined three communication patterns reflecting local and remote connections as well as the usage of cloud-based services. Applying these patterns, we connected the Factory of the Future at the Aalto University in Finland with the VxLab at the RMIT University in Australia and the Microsoft Azure cloud in the Netherlands. This allowed us to measure important Quality of Service networking parameters for the communication over short, medium, and very long distances. In this paper, we present first empirical results and discuss their impact on the remote control of AGVs.