Date of Award

Winter 1-15-2021

Author's School

McKelvey School of Engineering

Author's Department

Computer Science & Engineering

Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)

Degree Type



The Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) are transforming industries through emerging technologies such as wireless networks, edge computing, and machine learning. However, IIoT technologies are not ready for control systems for industrial automation that demands control performance of physical processes, resiliency to both cyber and physical disturbances, and energy efficiency. To meet the challenges of IIoT-driven control, we propose holistic control as a cyber-physical system (CPS) approach to next-generation industrial automation systems. In contrast to traditional industrial automation systems where computing, communication, and control are managed in isolation, holistic control orchestrates the management of cyber platforms (networks and computing platforms) and physical plant control at run-time in an integrated architecture. Specifically, this dissertation research comprises the following primary components.

Holistic wireless control: The core of holistic wireless control is a holistic controller comprising a plant controller and a network controller cooperating with each other. At run-time the holistic controller generates (1) control commands to the physical plant and (2) network reconfiguration commands to wireless networks based on both physical and network states. This part of dissertation research focused on the design and evaluation of holistic controllers exploiting a range of network reconfiguration strategies: (1) adapting transmission redundancy, (2) adapting sampling rates, (3) self-triggered control, and (4) dynamic transmission scheduling. Furthermore, we develop novel network reconfiguration protocols (NRP) as actuators to control network configurations in holistic control.

Holistic edge control: This part of dissertation research explores edge computing as a multitier computing platform for holistic control. The proposed switching multi-tier control (SMC) dynamically switches controllers located on different computation platforms, thereby exploiting the trade-off between computation and communication in a multi-tier computing platform. We also design the stability switch between local and edge controllers under information loss from another perspective, based on co-design of edge and local controllers that are designed via a joint Lyapunov function.

Real-time wireless cyber-physical simulators: To evaluate holistic control, we extend the Wireless Cyber-Physical Simulator (WCPS) to integrate simulated physical plants (in Simulink) with real wireless networks (WCPS-RT) and edge computing platforms (WCPS-EC). The real-time WCPS provides a holistic environment for CPS simulations that incorporate wireless dynamics that are challenging to simulate accurately, explore the impacts and trade-off of computation and communication of multi-tier platforms, and leverage simulation support for controllers and plants.


English (en)


Chenyang Lu

Committee Members

Chenyang Lu, Sanjoy Baruah, Christopher D. Gill, Bruno Sinopoli,