Daniel Karzel, Hannelore Marginean, Tuan-Si Tran: A Reference Architecture for the Internet of Things

This is the first article of a two article series in which we try to work from the abstract level of IoT reference architectures towards the concrete architecture and implementation for selected use cases. This first article will cover the definition of a more concrete and comprehensible architecture whereas the second part will then apply this architecture to actual use cases.

We are at the edge of a new interconnected world. Under the name “Internet of Things” (IoT) or “Industry 4.0” companies are developing a new network of intercommunicating objects of our everyday life. The IoT interconnects the Things in order to exchange information to fulfill tasks for the users. Ideas of fridges communicating not only with your smart-phone, but with the producer's server farm or an energy power plant will soon become reality. …

In order to achieve standardization it is necessary to create high level reference architectures like the one defined by IoT-A. However, high-level reference architectures are difficult to understand because they are very abstract. If you are in a consulting job you will see that it is impossible to show such high-level reference architectures to actual customers in the industry.

We would like to go a step further and provide guidelines on how to substantiate a more concrete architecture from the IoT-A reference architecture.