sTube+: An IoT communication sharing architecture for smart after-sales maintenance in buildings

Chuang Hu, Wei Bao, Dan Wang, Yi Qian, Muqiao Zheng, Shi Wang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review

5 Citations (Scopus)


Nowadays, manufacturers want to send the data of their products to the cloud so that they can conduct analysis and improve their operation, maintenance, and services. Manufacturers are looking for a self-contained solution. This is because their products are deployed in a large number of different buildings, and it is neither feasible for a vendor to negotiate with each building to use the building's network (e.g., WiFi) nor practical to establish its own network infrastructure. The vendor can rent a dedicated channel from an ISP to act as a thing-to-cloud communication (TCC) link for each of its IoT devices. The readily available choices, e.g., 3G, is over costly for most IoT devices. ISPs are developing cheaper choices for TCC links, yet we expect that the number of choices for TCC links will be small as compared to hundreds or thousands of requirements on different costs and data rates from IoT applications. We address this issue by proposing a communication sharing architecture sTube+, sharing tube. The objective of sTube+ is to organize a greater number of IoT devices, with heterogeneous data communication and cost requirements, to efficiently share fewer choices of TCC links and transmit their data to the cloud. We take a design of centralized price optimization and distributed network control. More specifically, we architect a layered architecture for data delivery, develop algorithms to optimize the overall monetary cost, and prototype a fully functioning system of sTube+. We evaluate sTube+ by both experiments and simulations. In addition, we develop a case study on smart maintenance of chillers and pumps, using sTube+ as the underlying network architecture.

Original languageEnglish
Article numbera29
Pages (from-to)1-29
Number of pages29
JournalACM Transactions on Sensor Networks
Issue number3-4
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2018


  • Communication architecture
  • IoT
  • Smart building
  • Thing-to-cloud

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications


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