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IPv6 over the TSCH mode of IEEE 802.15.4e (6TiSCH)

The 6TiSCH group is using bitbucket to store drafts, agendas, minutes and meeting materials:

About 6TiSCH

Low-power and Lossy Networks (LLNs) interconnect a possibly large number of resource-constrained nodes to form a wireless mesh network. The 6LoWPAN, ROLL and CoRE IETF Working Groups have defined protocols at various layers of the protocol stack, including an IPv6 adaptation layer, a routing protocol and a web transfer protocol. This protocol stack has been used with IEEE802.15.4 low-power radios.

The IEEE802.15.4e Timeslotted Channel Hopping (TSCH) is a recent amendment to the Medium Access Control (MAC) portion of the IEEE802.15.4 standard to address Time-Sensitive Networking (TSN). TSCH is the emerging standard for industrial automation and process control LLNs, with a direct inheritance from WirelessHART and ISA100.11a that are the incumbent standards for industrial Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN).

The nodes in a IEEE802.15.4e TSCH network communicate by following a Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) schedule. A timeslot in this schedule provides a unit of bandwidth that is allocated for communication between neighbor nodes. The allocation can be programmed such that the predictable transmission pattern matches the traffic. This avoids idle listening, and extends battery lifetime for constrained nodes. Channel-hopping improves reliability in the presence of narrow-band interference and multi-path fading. It results that with TSCH, packets that are delivered are delivered within a deterministic schedule, and that the loss ratio is kept low (arguably five 9's) in controlled environments.

6TiSCH defines IPv6 over TSCH; 6TiSCH mostly aims at industrial applications and will provide end-to-end IPv6 connectivity with open standards stack between a 'carpeted floor' running virtualized industrial devices and a 'factory floor' where wireless sensors and actuators are deployed. 6TiSCH is thus a key to enable the further adoption of IPv6 in industrial standards and the convergence of Operational Technology (OT) with Information Technology (IT).

To reach that goal, 6TiSCH is not only looking at a new Logical Link control and specific management formats, but also considering a bundled architecture that can be adopted by external SDOs for their next generation, with the stretched possibility to converge both wirelessHART and ISA100.11a onto IPv6. At the same time, 6TiSCH will stay away as much as possible from anything that is 802.15.4 specific, in order to be maximally reusable in other contexts where TSCH can be applied.