Design and Implementation of Open Source Secure Communications to and from an Agricultural Robot - AgRobot

State: completed by Davide Busolin

Agricultural robotics is a growing niche market [1, 2] that has the potential to change agricultural food production processes [3]. Despite the growing number of available (prototypical) robots, they do not allow yet to unveil this potential due to limited capacity and capability of corresponding manufacturers. Therefore, a growing number of universities, individuals, and companies are working on an open-source solution for field automation named Open Field Automation (OFA) [4]. An important part of this development is the communication from and to robots in the field. Communication typically includes:

Being connected vehicles, robots are susceptible to cyber security attacks that try tocause damage to hardware, software, or even living beings. Generally, individual solutions are not sufficient when they are part of complex hybrid systems, since there no single global solution proposal exists[5].

Therefore, the focus of this thesis or project is to (a) evaluate standards of related industry with respect to security and traffic capabilities, (b) develop an architecture for the robot’s communication system (all layers), and (c) demonstrate this approach with a prototypical implementation.


[1] Emergen Research, 03 05 2022. [Online]. Available: https://www.prnewswire.com/news-releases/agricultural-robots-market-size-to-reach-usd-99-30-billion-in-2030--increasing-population-along-with-rising-global-demand-for-food-are-key-factors-driving-industry-demand-says-emergen-research-301538022.html.

[2] Markets and Markets, [Online]. Available: https://www.marketsandmarkets.com/Market-Reports/agricultural-robot-market-173601759.html?gclid=EAIaIQobChMIubTbxYfD-AIVSLTVCh0VsQbAEAAYASAAEgLhR_D_BwE. [Accessed 23 06 2022].

[3] L. Ditzler and C. Driessen, "C. Automating Agroecology: How to Design a Farming Robot Without a Monocultural Mindset?," Journal of Agricultural and Environmental Ethics, vol. 35, no. 2, 22 01 2022. 

[4] BFH-HAFL, "Open Field Automation (OFA)," [Online]. Available: https://www.bfh.ch/ofa. [Accessed 23 06 2022].

[5] B. a. B. S. a. J.-H. F. Martínez-Rodríguez, "Autonomous Vehicles in Smart Farming," Applied Sciences, vol. 11, p. 4341, 2021. 


Supervisors: Martin Bauer, Berner Fachhochschule, Burkhard Stiller, CSG@IfI

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