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Resilient Distributed Algorithms for Modern Dynamic Networks

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  • Full or part time
    Dr A Trehan
    Dr P Kilpatrick
  • Application Deadline
    No more applications being accepted
  • Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)
    Funded PhD Project (Students Worldwide)

Project Description

This is a project in mathematical modeling and designing provably good algorithms (upper and lower bounds) motivated by future networks (IOT/SDN).

Computing networks (Internet, P2P and social networks) are now deeply integrated into our society .The Internet has taken over global communications: from 1% in the year 1993, to 51% by 2000, and more than 97% in 2007. Present day large scale networks are planned to be even more pervasive and diverse and will be even more so with the advent of networks such as the Internet of Things (IOT).

Every network has its series of demands. Networks rely on distributed, decentralized decision making and clever protocols using locally available data and limited resources. Distributed algorithms are concerned with the design and study of such provably good multi-agent protocols and related questions.

Most networks of interest are now dynamic due to the ever-changing conditions of the links and insertion and removal of nodes. Nodes in IOT are likely to be small mobile devices with limited memory and functionality. Resilience will be increasingly crucial in these networks due to their large-scale deployment and virtualized environments. Self-healing (SH) and Self-stabilization (SS) are two approaches that we are interested in. These approaches are also being used in autonomic systems and high performance computing e.g. the exascale computing project AllScale at QUB. The proposed PhD project will work towards developing resilient distributed algorithms for dynamic networks.

We will develop novel self-healing/self-stabilizing algorithms on the lines of e.g. ‘Compact Routing Messages in Self-Healing Trees’ (ICDCN 2016). Past work has dealt mainly with maintaining topologies of overlay networks, this work will now extend to running and making decisions on distributed protocols such as routing and network data flow. Besides classic overlay/P2P networks, we will look at the emerging Internet of Things and Software Defined Networks (SDN) as exemplars for our approach.

- Develop an in-depth understanding of resilience requirements and techniques for modern day and future networks (IOT/SDN).

- Develop resilient provably efficient distributed algorithms, in particular routing protocols, tuned to the requirements 
of modern and future networks. 

- Develop resilient solutions addressing various fault scenarios for SDN (e.g focusing on data flows) and IOT (e.g. low memory requirements).

Academic Requirements:
A minimum 2.1 honours degree or equivalent in Electrical and Electronic Engineering or relevant degree is required. International English Language Testing System (IELTS) 6.0 with a minimum of 5.5 in all four elements of the test or equivalent. A strong knowledge in signal processing, digital communications and mathematics is desired.

Funding Notes

This 3 year International PhD studentship, funded by the EPSRC Doctoral Training Partnership, commences as soon as possible (intended start date 1 October 2016), covers tuition fees and a maintenance grant (approximately £14,000 per annum). The deadline for submission of applications is 28 February 2016 at the latest.

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