Research projects using RTI DDS

At the University of Vigo's telecommunications engineering school, students learn the mathematical and physical principles that are necessary to understand telecommunication systems. We also teach them different programming languages, design tools, or in general, how to use computer based and electronic tools to build these communication systems.

In the final year of undergraduate studies, in the subject "Embedded Systems Design", we ask students to design and build a small autonomous vehicle (a quadcopter or a robocar). To do this, they must first create an "autopilot" to manage the information from the sensors, distribute it to the various information processing and decision making systems and finally apply the control commands.

The students build a distributed system in which they use RTI Connext DDS to exchange information between the different blocks of software.


Vetronics Research Centre logo

Research studies focussing on the integration of COTS sensing technologies with UK MoD standards compliant vehiclular architectures and data management processes for crew workload control. Providing interoperability between complex situational awareness systems of systems for future crew station development, utilising RTI DDS coupled with Interoperable Open Architectures (IOA) approaches.

Systems of Systems Research

NtoM logoICARUS UPC logo

NtoM is a concept of operations which pursues the feasibility, from a human factors perspective, of having a single pilot/aircrew controlling several remotely piloted aircraft systems (RPAS) at once in non-segregated airspace. To meet such feasibility, this multitasking must be safe and not interfere with the job of the air traffic controllers due to delays or errors associated with parallel piloting. To that end, a set of measures at several levels are suggested.

A prototype of the system orchestrating the enviroment described by the ConOps was implemented to illustrate the potential of the concept. The connectivity between the clients for pilots and controllers and the server was done using RTI Connext DDS, which is particularly interesting in the case of the RPAS to simulate different scenarios of Quality of Service of the link.

 DDS schema of the NtoM connectivity

The Health Aggregator Manager (HAM) project, developed by the Center for Strategic Health Technologies (NUTES), from Paraiba State University (UEPB), Campina Grande, Brazil, in partnership with Signove Technology S/A and LIFEMED Medical Devices, aims to create a high-level system that serves as a managing interface of medical measurements, taken by devices that comply with the ISO/IEEE 11073 standard, using the Antidote, which is a set of free libraries that implement the standard. The contribution is to present a reference architecture and implementation for an open cyber-physical system, with sound documentation and practices. The HAM was developed using agile practices and a requirements-based engineering approach. This mixed approach satisfy safety requirements defined by this type of health/medical system and enables the demonstration of compliance with main software standards.

The middleware between tools for Electronic Health Records (REIS) and Health Aggregator Managers (HAM)



DRONEXT logoUC3M logo

The DRONEXT project addresses the design of a multi-service communication framework for the protection, safety and defense applications of the secure societies of the future. Our solution uses an infrastructure of Micro Air Vehicles (MAV) to provide communications and service coverage in delimited geographical areas, in which there is no appropriate communications for the applications to be deployed (non-existent or unavailable due to a natural disaster for instance). Additionally, the framework under development uses larger tactical Remotely Piloted Aircraft Systems (RPAS) to communicate distant geographical areas, where MAVs coverage is supported, with a Ground Control Station (GCS), which provides connectivity towards control centers responsible for coordinating the execution of the operations that required the network deployment. 


Figure 1: overview of the framework design and use cases

Our framework makes use of virtualization techniques, to support the fast and adaptable deployment and upgrade of any functions and services over the MAV infrastructure (e.g. VoIP services, routing, positioning algorithms, video recording and transmission, etc.). The use of virtualization, and the coordination of MAVs and larger tactical RPAS, provides the flexibility to address a wide variety of use cases related to protection, security and defense. An overview of the framework design, along with a subset of its use cases, is presented in Figure 1.


As connected autonomous vehicles are becoming a reality, it becomes paramount to introduce the fundamentals and the design concepts of such systems into engineering curriculum. From a different perspective such systems offer an exciting platform for enhancing student motivation and sense of mastery. During the spring semester of 2015, the intelligent automation systems graduate course at the department of Industrial Engineering and Management, Ben-Gurion University focused on autonomous mobile robot systems, with a specific emphasis on IOT connected autonomous vehicles. To facilitate student understanding of the theoretical and practical foundations along with the complexities of such systems the curriculum was designed around a collective bottom up construction of an autonomous driving system based on a team of EV3 Lego robots and a 3m squared road map (Fig 1). The course was divided into two sections: autonomous mobile robots and connected autonomous vehicles. As part of the course requirements, the students, divided into teams, constructed two mini projects implementing the theoretical concepts studied within each section. For the first project the teams were required to build a mobile robot capable of staying on the road and driving between junctions according to the shortest route (calculated offline). The robot was additionally required to stop before each junction and in case of identifying an obstacle (e.g., a car in front of the robot) not to get closer than a given distance from it.The theoretical concepts studied included robot design, path planning, and motion control (Fig. 2). For the second project the robot was additionally required to communicate with a central traffic control system before and during crossing of each junction. The theoretical concepts studied included team control, communication, and software design. RTI DDS was used for illustrating data-centered system design and programming and for communication quality-of-service design. One team additionally implemented an online visualization of traffic congestion using Excel DDS add-on. The ease of constructing applications using Lego EV3 and RTI Connext, along with adherence to a simplified environment (planar surface, right-angle turns, and color-based information) enabled hands-on appreciation of both low and high-level concepts including design, control, communication, and collaboration issues.  During the final exam the students successfully discussed system safety features and ethical considerations and designed a data centered implementation of an IOT application for connected vehicles, e.g., using the autonomous car as a delivery option for online purchased goods, or an online pizza purchase to-go App (Fig 3).

More details about the Integrated Manufacturing Lab in which the course took place can be found in:



 Figure 1: Three EV3 Lego robots on the road map



 Figure 2- A: Two students presenting their path planning algorithm. B:  A student closely monitoring his robot during project presentation


Suggested design

Figure 3: Suggested design for using the customer’s autonomous vehicle as a currier by the delivery company



This project explores various clinical scenarios on top of various middleware using a basic set of communication patterns.  This project is composed of the following components. 

  • Simple Communication Patterns abstract low-level details of communication between medical devices and applications.  All of the four patterns support properties to capture QoS requirements.  The supported properties enable modular reasoning (via local control) about devices and applications. A prototype Java implementation of the patterns is available on top of RTI Connext and Vert.x via a common API/SPI and general mechanism to notify clients about the violation of QoS requirements.
  • Clinical Scenarios demonstrate the use of both the native API of communication substrates (such as DDS) and simple communication patterns to realize various clinical scenarios involving communicating medical devices and applications. [Work in progress]

While the effort is being pursued in the space of communicating medical devices and applications, the patterns are applicable to other domains that involve heterogeneous communicating entities.   

This effort is being pursued in the context of Medical Device Coordination Framework (MDCF), a project exploring techniques to enable Medical Application Platforms (MAP).  MDCF provides a prototype implementation of Integrated Clinical Environment (ICE), an architecture to realize MAP.


In aircraft industry, after labour and fuel costs, maintenance costs are the third largest expense item for both regional and national carriers. By implementing IVHM technologies not only the maintenance costs can be reduced, also it can provide more specific scheduled maintenance, on-board diagnostics and prognostics services. Maintenance department can be notified about the fault in advance and can arrange for components while aircraft is in mid-air. IVHM technologies minimize the physical diagnostics costs and provide more realistic condition based maintenance (CBM). The aim of this project is to investigate, using simulation and optimization, how IVHM network architecture can be built and implemented in aircraft (or IVHM applications), to support interoperability between multiple vendors’ IVHM components and insertion of new IVHM capabilities. IVHM consists of subsystems, sensors, model based reasoning systems for subsystem and system level managers, diagnostic and prognostics software for subsystems. In IVHM systems, usually there is large amount of data (collected from sensors), which needs to be delivered to right places at the right time so communication paradigm is the first and very essential design consideration which impacts many key properties such as scalability, reliability, availability, timeliness and configuration of overall system. The OSA-CBM (Open System Architecture for Condition Based Maintenance) defines an open architecture for moving information in a condition-based maintenance system. Typically, companies developing condition-based maintenance systems must develop software and hardware components, in addition a framework for these components to integrate. OSA-CBM is a standard architecture and framework for implementing condition-based maintenance systems. It not only describes the six functional blocks of condition based maintenance systems but also the interfaces to establish communication.



The project focuses on acquisition, distribution, and storage of health and smart-home data. The university's Ambient Assisted Living lab is continuously running research and development projects that use RTI Connext. The projects are used in under graduate and graduate courses as well as research projects with focus on electronic patient records and distribution of health data.

The focus of the project is to model a wind farm and the data distributed therein. Siemens Wind Power in Denmark is loosely affiliated with the project. The project is used as basis for under graduate and graduate courses as well as research in distributed control systems, network communication, and optimization.