A Simple Model of MTC Flows Applied to Smart Factories
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In this paper we develop a simple, yet accurate, performance model to understand if and how evolutions of standard cellular network protocols can be exploited to allow large numbers of machine type devices to access transmission resources with short latency, and we apply our model to the performance analysis of smart factory radio access networks. The model results shed light on the problems resulting from the application of evolved standard access procedures and help understand how many devices can be served per base station with specified latency targets. In addition, considering the simultaneous presence of different traffic classes, we investigate the effectiveness of prioritised access, exploiting access class barring techniques. Our model shows that, even with the sub-millisecond time slots foreseen in LTE Advanced Pro and 5G, a base station can accommodate at most few thousand devices to guarantee access latency below 100 ms with high transmission success probability. Lower access latency, of the order of 10 ms, can be achieved only with base stations serving an unrealistically small numbers of devices. This calls for a rethinking of wireless access strategies to avoid excessive latency in ultra-dense cell deployments within smart factory's infrastructures.