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Integration of 5G with TSN as Prerequisite for a Highly Flexible Future Industrial Automation: Time Synchronization based on IEEE 802.1AS

Michael Gundall; Christopher Huber; Peter Rost; Rüdiger Halfmann; Hans Dieter Schotten
In: 2020 IEEE 46th Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IECON). Annual Conference of the IEEE Industrial Electronics Society (IECON-2020), October 18-21, Singapore, Singapore, IEEE, 10/2020.


Industry 4.0 brings up new types of use cases, whereby mobile use cases play a significant role. These use cases have stringent requirements on both automation and communication systems that cannot be achieved with recent shop floor technologies. Therefore, novel technologies such as IEEE time-sensitive networking (TSN) and Open Platform Communications Unified Architecture (OPC UA) are being introduced. In addition, for the realization of mobile use cases, wireline technologies cannot be used and have to be replaced by wireless connections, which have to meet the high demands of the industrial landscape. Here, 5th generation wireless communication system (5G) is seen as a promising candidate. Especially encouraging and similarly challenging is the cooperative work of mobile robots, where particularly high demands on time synchronization arise. Therefore, this paper introduces a concept for the integration of TSN conform time synchronization (IEEE 802.1AS) with 5G to fulfill these use cases. Furthermore, the paper describes a testbed for discrete manufacturing, consisting pre-dominantly of industrial equipment, in order to evaluate the presented approach.