Service-aware Adaptive Transport Overlays (SATO)

This area focuses on enhancing the transport layer with the concept of Service-aware Adaptive Transport Overlays (SATO). For this purpose, the concept of the Service Specific Overlay Networks (SSONs ) has been developed as a means to allow customisation for media services. The main challenge with SATO within this project is to generalise the overlay capabilities to fit any data type – not just multimedia – and related network resources. Innovative concepts of SATO are:

  • Providing flexible and customisable transport services to the application layer by using an overlay network on top of basic AN connectivity.

  • Dynamic inclusion of network elements – the so-called overlay nodes – in the end-to-end transport path. Overlay nodes can provide value added functions such as media adaptation, routing, caching, rate adaptation, synchronization, filtering, metering, congestion control, etc.

  • An Ambient Service Interface (ASI) that on the one hand hides underlying transport complexity from applications/services, but on the other hand allows applications/services to intelligently customise the transport services to their particular needs.

  • Adaptability of the overlay networks; overlay networks and overlay nodes are dynamically reconfigured to adapt to changing conditions like, network context, Quality of Service (QoS), mobility, and network composition.

  • Automatic management; self-configuration, self-healing, self-protection, self-securing, self-optimisation, self activation of overlay networks.

  • Reliability and resilience; fault-tolerant protocols, algorithms and state stores that survive failures/removal of overlay nodes and overlay control nodes without loosing the control and state of configured overlays.

  • Optimised cross layer performance between the transports overlay layer and the underlying network connectivity layer.

  • Charging and metering: capabilities for metering in overlay nodes and charging of transport services.

  • Secure overlays: secure overlay networks can be used to protect from e.g. DoS attacks

Since ASI has an important role throughout this project, several studies will be done and in order to specify ASI there will be interactions with future “users” of the ASI, like the MobiLife and SPICE projects within WWI, to investigate upper layer requirements on an ASI.

This area will also actively contribute its outcome (i.e., requirements, architectures, interfaces) to relevant standardisation bodies such as 3GPP, OMA, ETSI and IETF. As for now, OMA has been identified as a suitable candidate for conveying Ambient Network's vision of the Ambient Service Interface (ASI). Furthermore, SATO seems to perfectly complement 3GPP’s IP Multimedia Subsystem (IMS). Additionally, the basic concepts of network-side media processing and the overlay approach to cope with the heterogeneity of underlying technologies and dynamic network environments are compatible with current developments on the topic of “All-IP Networks” in 3GPP Standardisation.

In addition to standardization, the success of the SATO concept will also rely on a commercially viable migration strategy that focuses on the costs of introducing new equipment as well as the inter-working with legacy systems will also be addressed.

Further Readings: "Media Aware Overlay Routing in Ambient Networks"


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Technical Objectives

  Potential Impact
  Business Models
  Mobility Management
  Context, Policy & Network Management
  Conectivity & Dynamic Internetworking
  Service-Aware Adaptive Transport Overlays
  Composition, Compensation & Charging Support
  Integration & Verification
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