ING-INF/05 - 9 CFU - 2° Semester

Teaching Staff


Learning Objectives

Knowledge and understanding

Understanding of the characteristics of communication systems in automation.

Knowledge of the issues in the design and evaluation of real-time networks for automation.

Knowledge of technologies and tools for the implementation of communication solutions in automation domains (e.g. industrial, automotive).

Applying knowledge and understanding

Students will be able to choose the communication solution more suitable for the needs of the considered automation applications and to properly configure the parameters of the varius traffic flows to be handled (e.g., transmission priority, traffic class, reserved bandwidth, etc.)

Students will be able to develop simulation models for evaluating the performance of wired and wireless automation networks.

Making judgements

The student will be able to evaluate the impact of the different tecnologies and protocols on the performance of industrial and automotive networks.

Communication skills

The student will be able to clearly and rigorously present the acquired knowledge and how to apply it for the evaluation of the different architectural choices in the design of industrial and automotive networks.

Learning skills

The student will be able to independently learn further advanced features of industrial and automotive networks

Course Structure

Lectures. Lab exercises.

Should teaching be carried out in mixed mode or remotely, it may be necessary to introduce changes with respect to previous statements, inline with the programme planned and outlined in the syllabus.

Student Reception may be also carried out online, by appointment.

Detailed Course Content

Asterisks (*) indicate the minimum skills.

1. Real-time characteristics of industrial automation systems. Temporal constraints and design choices. Performance targets and evaluation metrics. Time-driven and event-driven models. Traffic characterization in the different types of automation systems. (*)
2. Transmission scheduling in real-time networks. Unsuitability of FIFO, Shortest Job First, and Round Robin policies. Precedence constraints. Constraints on resources. Traffic scheduling for real-time aperiodic and periodic flows: Timeline scheduling, Rate Monotonic, Deadline monotonic, Earliest Deadline First. Schedulability tests.(*). Hints on scheduling without preemption/ scheduling/with precedence constraints/hybrid.
3. The role of the Data Link layer of industrial automation networks. Addressing. Overview of the typical MAC protocol models: Master/Slave,Token passing,TDMA,CSMA,CSMA/CD, CSMA/BA.(*)
4. Automotive networks. Design goals and functional domains. Main technologies: LIN, CAN/CAN FD, TTCAN, FlexRAY, MOST, Ethernet, IEEE Audio Video Bridging.(*)
5. Time-Sensitive Networking.(*)
6. Communication architectures of automation systems. Main Fieldbus networks: PROFIBUS, HART.(*)
7. Industrial Ethernet: The IEC 61784 Standard. (*) Communication Profile examples: MODBUS, POWERLINK, PROFINET, ETHERCAT. (*)
8. Wireless systems for automation applications. Support offered by the IEEE 802.11x and its variants to real-time automation traffic. (*)
9. Industrial wireless sensor networks: WirelessHART. (*)
10. Hints on Bluetooth Low Energy and LoRa/LoRaWAN in industrial IoT applications.

11. Discrete event simulation tool OMNeT++: installation, configuration, use and development of automation network models. The INET framework, development of modules.(*)

The practical part of the course is based on the assessmnet of network protocols using OMNeT++.

Textbook Information

Course Material by the lecturer can be found in

For further reading: Industrial Communication Technology Handbook, 2nd Edition, CRC Press LLC, USA, ISBN : 978-1-4822-0733-0, 2014.

Open in PDF format Versione in italiano