Modeling and analysing an industry 4.0 communication protocol

Benjamin Aziz

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The increasing complexity and criticality of industrial automation systems, embodied by the concept of Industry 4.0, which brings together concepts like Cyber-physical systems, the Internet-of-Things, Big Data and Artificial Intelligence, calls for more formality in specifying the technology standards underlying these systems. We define in this paper a formal model of an Industry 4.0 machine-2-machine communication protocol, Hermes, used in specifying electronic board transfers in an assembly line. Our analysis of the formal specification reveals that, despite the robustness of the protocol, many testing scenarios have been ignored in the protocol standard and in particular, scenarios that include simultaneous machine errors. Therefore, our work paves the way for a better informed testing strategy in Industry 4.0 systems that implement the protocol.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)10120-10127
Number of pages8
JournalIEEE Internet of Things Journal
Issue number10
Early online date1 Jun 2020
Publication statusPublished - 11 Oct 2020


  • communication protocols
  • cyber-physical systems
  • formal analysis
  • Industry 4.0
  • Internet of Things (IoT)


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