CISTER QuickNews - 21 May 2010

CISTER Quicknews

21, May, 2010


 CISTER QuickNews


Welcome to the May 21, 2010 edition of CISTER QuickNews.

CISTER QuickNews is a newsletter providing up-to-date information on the activities and results of the Research Centre in Real-Time Computing Systems, being disseminated every two weeks to a selected audience.

For more information, contact us at cister-info@isep.ipp.pt, or visit www.cister.isep.ipp.pt.

Quick look


   1. EU-funded project EMMON reaches an important milestone

   2. Björn Andersson: world-wide recognized researcher celebrates 5 years with CISTER

   3. CISTER Researchers achieve outstanding international recognition

   4. CISTER files non-provisional patent in distributed algorithms for Cyber-Physical Systems




EU-funded project EMMON reaches an important milestone


The first review meeting of the EMMON project is held today, May 21, in Brussels. EMMON is an ARTEMIS project jointly funded by the Member States and the European Commission (ARTEMIS-JU). The ARTEMIS Joint Technology Initiative, which is one of the premier programs of the European Commission in the area of Embedded Computing, aims to tackle the research and structural challenges faced by European industry by defining and implementing a coherent Research Agenda for Embedded Computing Systems. EMMON is lead by Portuguese hi-tech company Critical Software and has an overall budget of around 2,5 MEuros, with approximately 300 kEuros being allocated to ISEP.


EMMON aims at conceiving a wireless sensor network (WSN) architecture for enabling embedded monitoring at an unprecedented scale, up to thousands of sensor nodes in dense deployments, covering wide geographical areas. EMMON application domains range from critical physical infrastructures monitoring and urban quality of life to precision agriculture. The first year of the EMMON project has been focused in the identification of the application/user requirements, the definition of the system architecture and the research of the hardware/software platforms. In the second year, a large scale test lab will be deployed and prototypes of the new platforms and applications will be also put forward.


In EMMON, CISTER leads the “Research on Protocols & Communication Systems” Workpackage, leveraging on CISTER’s critical mass and worldwide visibility on WSN technologies, and using the CISTER-created open-ZB toolset (http://www.open-zb.net/). These open-source implementations of the IEEE 802.15.4 and ZigBee protocols, with associated methodologies to analyze, dimension, simulate and engineer WSNs with improved Quality-of-Service, already reached more than 5 thousand downloads and approximately 100 thousand visits. As a corollary of CISTER’s international recognition, CISTER researchers have been founding members of related international working groups (TinyOS 15.4 and ZigBee), and related publications, because of being seminal, are attaining an excellent track record in terms of citations.


More info on EMMON is available at http://www.artemis-emmon.eu/.




Björn Andersson: world-wide recognized researcher celebrates 5 years with CISTER


It was 5 years ago that, after an international call for invited scientists, researcher Björn Andersson started his tenure as one of the leading scientists in CISTER. Björn obtained his master in electrical engineering at Chalmers University of Technology in Sweden in 1999, receiving the Swedish National Real-Time Association best master of science thesis award. He went to the University of Virginia as a visiting scientist, where he worked in extending static-priority scheduling from uniprocessors to multiprocessors systems, and earned his Ph.D. degree at Chalmers University of Technology in 2004.


During these years in the CISTER Research Center, Björn has been performing outstandingly, and is arguably one of the most prominent ICT researchers currently in Portugal. Björn became responsible for the research line on multicore systems withinCISTER, and is currently one of the most respected researchers worldwide in the increasingly important area of real-time multiprocessor systems. He currently leads two fairly large FCT projects (RESCORE and REHEAT), a FLAD project (REJOIN) in collaboration with the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a FP7 cluster (SDP) in collaboration with various partners members the CONET European Network of Excellence (http://www.cooperating-objects.eu). He is also one of the CISTER’s senior researchers involved in the European Project RECOMP. Bjorn has a track record of more than 50 papers in leading scientific journals and international conferences, and 4 patent applications and one spin-off company. He has also been very active in the ICTI Portugal Carnegie Mellon initiative, as well as other Doctoral programs in which CISTER is directly involved.  




CISTER Researchers achieve outstanding international recognition


In 2010, CISTER researchers are in charge of the Program Committee in two major international real-time systems events. One is the 16th IEEE International Conference on Embedded and Real-Time Computing Systems and Applications (RTCSA 2010) -http://www.rtcsa.org, to be held next August in Macau SAR, P.R.C. Another event is the 6th International Workshop on Operating Systems Platforms for Embedded Real-Time Applications (OSPERT’2010) – http://www.artist-embedded.org/artist/-OSPERT-2010-.html, to be held next July in Brussels, Belgium.


Outstanding is also the participation of three CISTER researchers in the Program Committee (containing around 40 members) of the main track of the prime international event on real-time computing systems, the 31st IEEE Real-Time Systems Symposium –http://www.rtss.org, which will take place next November/December in San Diego, CA, USA. It is indeed very rare that a single institution has such a prominent participation in a top-ranked conference in computer science, and this is also an outstanding recognition of CISTER’s research excellence.




CISTER files non-provisional patent in distributed algorithms for Cyber-Physical Systems


With a record of several provisional patents filed or in preparation, CISTER researchers filed (in partnership with IPP’s OTIC) its first non-provisional patent to the US patent office. The patent, entitled "Methods and Systems for incrementally obtaining an interpolation of sensor readings", builds upon CISTER´s unique expertise in wireless prioritized medium access control protocols and its exploitation in the framework of the Cyber-Physical Systems strategic initiative set up by the research unit.


Currently, embedded computer systems already constitute 99% of all computers and this fraction is expected to increase in the future. Embedded computers are increasingly networked and interfacing with their surrounding physical environment (e.g., RFid tags, wireless sensor networks, in-vehicle communications). More and more, applications need to be aware not only of its own sensing of the environment, but also of the readings obtained by all the computers in the system. Unfortunately, straightforward methods currently used (each computer broadcasts its reading) are very costly in terms of communication in large scale applications.


The patented innovation allows a set of embedded computers to obtain an approximate representation of all readings in the system with a time-complexity that is independent of the number of computers. Potential applications for the technology includes areas such as (i) control of intelligent materials (such as aircraft wings), (ii) pre-crash safety systems in vehicles, (iii) advanced control of combustion engines and (iv) dense  instrumentation of micro or nano-scale in-body sensors.


Further information about the research can be found at CISTER’s Cyber-Physical Systems research line.





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