FNA research line works in the field of network technologies and distributed systems, with a special emphasis on heterogeneous networks and data routing systems and data management. The group's research consists in the analysis of heterogeneous data networks and the extraction of metrics that allow their characterization, in order (1) to define algorithms and mechanisms that reduce the use of network and computing resources, and (2) improve your level of security. This knowledge is complemented by research in new network architectures that raise new paradigms of computing and communications and facilitate the integration of new data distribution and security systems. Therefore, the group analyses the usage of alternative communication paradigms, protocols and network architectures, focusing on analysing the feasibility and the benefits that some Future Network Architectures (FNA) paradigms and solutions – e.g. Information Centric Networks (ICN), Network Service Composition / Network Functions Virtualisation (NFV), Software Defined Networks (SDN), Delay Tolerant Networks (DTN) – can provide in some scenarios. More concretely, several FNA technologies and techniques has been identified as enablers for the efficient deployment and integration of heterogeneous networks in different fields, such as Smart Grids, Smart Cities, Industrial IoT, Media Distribution and Ambient Assistant Living (AAL).
Aimed at deepening its evolution into the Social Internet of Things (SIoT), FNA line also works in the application of this concept in the Smart Grids and AAL fields. In SIoT, objects are able to participate in communities of objects, create groups of special interest and perform collaborative actions without any differentiation between objects and people. More concretely, some of the GRITS strategic objectives in this field are, mainly, a formal definition of a community of things and their state
Regarding solutions for data distribution optimization, the group has also been working on the design of an efficient transport layer solution for the migration of large data volumes and resources (that will be very valuable for distributed systems with high amount of data transfers, such in Hybrid Clouds). In that sense, FNA line is also working in the design and evaluation of mechanisms that provide reliable and secure transport protocols for large data transfers over Long Fat Networks (LFNs), which present high bandwidth and delay product. After a preliminary design of a transport layer protocol done during last few years, the next strategic research objectives about this topic are its design consolidation, optimization of its fairness towards other communication protocols, and the evaluation of its congestion control and overall performance over more hostile scenarios.
Last but not least, based on the experience acquired in the recent years, the group also plans to address cybersecurity aspects and analyse how cybersecurity threats can be addressed in different solutions that integrate IoT, Cloud/Fog systems and FNA approaches. More concretely, the research to be done covers the specification of aspects as event monitoring methodologies in technologies like cloud computing and SDNs, to prevent security threats and apply protection measures. Besides that, GRITS poses the application of artificial intelligence techniques to identify automatically abnormal behaviour patterns. Finally, related to architectures and algorithms, it is proposed the study of the deployment of a large amount of distributed sensors to provide mutually-aware, self-reconfiguring, auto-defensive and self-healing networks.
In addition, the group is also enhanced by the extensive experience of its members of in R&D projects with public and private funding, at national and international level, especially in the field of smart grids and smart cities.