The integration of air and ground smart vehicles is becoming a new paradigm of future transportation. A decent number of smart unmanned vehicles or UAS will be sharing the national airspace for various purposes, such as express delivery, surveillance, etc. However, the proliferation of UAS also brings challenges considering the safe integration of them into the current Air Traffic Management (ATM) systems. Especially when the current Automatic Dependent Surveillance Broadcasting (ADS-B) systems do not have message authentication mechanisms, it can not distinguish whether an authorized UAS is using the corresponding airspace. In this paper, we aim to address these practical challenges in two folds. We first use blockchain to provide a secure authentication platform for flight plan approval and sharing between the existing ATM facilities. We then use the fountain code to encode the authentication payloads and adapt them into the de facto communication protocol of ATM. This maintains backward compatibility and ensures the verification success rate under the noisy broadcasting channel. We simulate the realistic wireless communication scenarios and theoretically prove that our proposed authentication framework is with low latency and highly compatible with existing ATM communication protocols.

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One of the most challenging services fifth-generation (5G) mobile network is designed to support, is the critical services in-need of very low latency, and/or high reliability. It is now clear that such critical services will also be at the core of beyond 5G (B5G) networks. While 5G radio design accommodates such supports by introducing more flexibility in timing, how efficiently those services could be scheduled over a shared network with other broadband services remains as a challenge. In this paper, we use network slicing as an enabler for network sharing and propose an optimization framework to schedule resources to critical services via puncturing technique with minimal impact on the regular broadband services. We then thoroughly examine the performance of the framework in terms of throughput and reliability through simulation.

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Blockchain applications may offer better fault-tolerance, integrity, traceability and transparency compared to centralized solutions. Despite these benefits, few businesses switch to blockchain-based applications. Industries worry that the current blockchain implementations do not meet their requirements, e.g., when it comes to scalability, throughput or latency. Hyperledger Fabric (HLF) is a permissioned blockchain infrastructure that aims to meet enterprise needs and provides a highly modular and well-conceived architecture. In this paper, we survey and analyse requirements of blockchain applications in respect to their underlying infrastructure by focusing mainly on performance and resilience characteristics. Subsequently, we discuss to what extent Fabric's current design allows it to meet these requirements. We further evaluate the performance of Hyperledger Fabric 2.2 simulating different use case scenarios by comparing single with multi ordering service performance and conducting an evaluation with mixed workloads.

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The continually growing demands for traffic as a result of advanced technologies in 5G and 6G systems offering services with intensive demands such as IoT and virtual reality applications has resulted in significant performance expectations of data center networks (DCNs). More specifically, DCNs are expected to meet high bandwidth connectivity, high throughput, low latency, and high scalability requirements. However, the current wired DCN architectures introduce large cabling requirements and limit the ability to reconfigure data centres as they expand. To that end, wireless technologies such as Optical Wireless Communication (OWC) have been proposed as a viable and cost-effective solution to meet the aforementioned requirements. This paper proposes the use of Infrared (IR) OWC systems that employ Wavelength Division Multiplexing (WDM) to enhance the DCN communication in the downlink direction; i.e. from Access Points (APs) in the ceiling, connected to spine switches, to receivers attached to the top of the racks representing leaf switches. The proposed systems utilize Angle Diversity Transmitters (ADTs) mounted on the room ceiling to facilitate inter-rack communication. Two different optical receiver types are considered, namely Angle Diversity Receivers (ADRs) and Wide Field-of-View Receivers (WFOVR). The simulation (i.e. channel modeling) results show that our proposed data center links achieve good data rates in the data centre up to 15 Gbps.

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This paper describes the design and control of a support and recovery system for use with planar legged robots. The system operates in three modes. First, it can be operated in a fully transparent mode where no forces are applied to the robot. In this mode, the system follows the robot closely to be able to quickly catch the robot if needed. Second, it can provide a vertical supportive force to assist a robot during operation. Third, it can catch the robot and pull it away from the ground after a failure to avoid falls and the associated damages. In this mode, the system automatically resets the robot after a trial allowing for multiple consecutive trials to be run without manual intervention. The supportive forces are applied to the robot through an actuated cable and pulley system that uses series elastic actuation with a unidirectional spring to enable truly transparent operation. The nonlinear nature of this system necessitates careful design of controllers to ensure predictable, safe behaviors. In this paper we introduce the mechatronic design of the recovery system, develop suitable controllers, and evaluate the system's performance on the bipedal robot RAMone.

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Next-generation wireless systems are rapidly evolving from communication-only systems to multi-modal systems with integrated sensing and communications. In this paper a novel joint sensing and communication framework is proposed for enabling wireless extended reality (XR) at terahertz (THz) bands. To gather rich sensing information and a higher line-of-sight (LoS) availability, THz-operated reconfigurable intelligent surfaces (RISs) acting as base stations are deployed. The sensing parameters are extracted by leveraging THz's quasi-opticality and opportunistically utilizing uplink communication waveforms. This enables the use of the same waveform, spectrum, and hardware for both sensing and communication purposes. The environmental sensing parameters are then derived by exploiting the sparsity of THz channels via tensor decomposition. Hence, a high-resolution indoor mapping is derived so as to characterize the spatial availability of communications and the mobility of users. Simulation results show that in the proposed framework, the resolution and data rate of the overall system are positively correlated, thus allowing a joint optimization between these metrics with no tradeoffs. Results also show that the proposed framework improves the system reliability in static and mobile systems. In particular, the highest reliability gains of 10% in reliability are achieved in a walking speed mobile environment compared to communication only systems with beam tracking.

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Supply chain finance(SCF) is committed to providing credit for small and medium-sized enterprises(SMEs) with low credit lines and small financing scales. The resulting financial credit data and related business transaction data are highly confidential and private. However, traditional SCF management schemes mostly use third-party platforms and centralized designs, which cannot achieve highly reliable secure storage and fine-grained access control. To fill this gap, this paper designs and implements Fabric-SCF, a secure storage and access control system based on blockchain and attribute-based access control (\textbf{ABAC}) model. This scheme uses distributed consensus to realize data security, traceability, and immutability. We also use smart contracts to define system processes and access policies to ensure the efficient operation of the system. To verify the performance of Fabric-SCF, we designed two sets of simulation experiments. The results show that Fabric-SCF achieves dynamic and fine-grained access control while maintaining high throughput in a simulated real-world operating scenario.

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In this paper, we consider a smart factory scenario where a set of actuators receive critical control signals from an access point (AP) with reliability and low latency requirements. We investigate jointly active beamforming at the AP and passive phase shifting at the reconfigurable intelligent surface (RIS) for successfully delivering the control signals from the AP to the actuators within a required time duration. The transmission follows a two-stage design. In the first stage, each actuator can both receive the direct signal from AP and the reflected signal from the RIS. In the second stage, the actuators with successful reception in the first stage, relay the message through the D2D network to the actuators with failed receptions. We formulate a non-convex optimization problem where we first obtain an equivalent but more tractable form by addressing the problem with discrete indicator functions. Then, Frobenius inner product based equality is applied for decoupling the optimization variables. Further, we adopt a penalty-based approach to resolve the rank-one constraints. Finally, we deal with the $\ell_0$-norm by $\ell_1$-norm approximation and add an extra term $\ell_1-\ell_2$ for sparsity. Numerical results reveal that the proposed two-stage RIS-aided D2D communication protocol is effective for enabling reliable communication with latency requirements.

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This paper discusses cellular network security for unmanned aircraft systems (UASs) and provides insights into the ongoing Third Generation Partnership Project (3GPP) standardization efforts with respect to authentication and authorization, location information privacy, and command and control signaling. We introduce the 3GPP reference architecture for network connected UAS and the new network functions as part of the 5G core network, discuss introduce the three security contexts, potential threats, and the 3GPP procedures. The paper identifies research opportunities for UAS communications security and recommends critical security features and processes to be considered for standardization.

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Blockchain has been widely deployed in various sectors, such as finance, education, and public services. Since blockchain runs as an immutable distributed ledger, it has decentralized mechanisms with persistency, anonymity, and auditability, where transactions are jointly performed through cryptocurrency-based consensus algorithms by worldwide distributed nodes. There have been many survey papers reviewing the blockchain technologies from different perspectives, e.g., digital currencies, consensus algorithms, and smart contracts. However, none of them have focused on the blockchain data management systems. To fill in this gap, we have conducted a comprehensive survey on the data management systems, based on three typical types of blockchain, i.e., standard blockchain, hybrid blockchain, and DAG (Directed Acyclic Graph)-based blockchain. We categorize their data management mechanisms into three layers: blockchain architecture, blockchain data structure, and blockchain storage engine, where block architecture indicates how to record transactions on a distributed ledger, blockchain data structure refers to the internal structure of each block, and blockchain storage engine specifies the storage form of data on the blockchain system. For each layer, the works advancing the state-of-the-art are discussed together with technical challenges. Furthermore, we lay out the future research directions for the blockchain data management systems.

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Driven by the visions of Internet of Things and 5G communications, the edge computing systems integrate computing, storage and network resources at the edge of the network to provide computing infrastructure, enabling developers to quickly develop and deploy edge applications. Nowadays the edge computing systems have received widespread attention in both industry and academia. To explore new research opportunities and assist users in selecting suitable edge computing systems for specific applications, this survey paper provides a comprehensive overview of the existing edge computing systems and introduces representative projects. A comparison of open source tools is presented according to their applicability. Finally, we highlight energy efficiency and deep learning optimization of edge computing systems. Open issues for analyzing and designing an edge computing system are also studied in this survey.

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