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IoT (Internet of Things) networks connect user devices with everyday household and professional devices, but the challenge is reaching a balance between functionality and energy efficiency. To solve this problem, researchers from RUDN University proposed using a new type of network architecture that uses flying drones that process data instead of cloud data centers, speeding up the network. It is called “fog computing”.

Ph.D. Ammar Muthanna, Director of the Scientific Center for Modeling Wireless 5G Networks at RUDN University said: “IoT devices are often resource-limited, especially in terms of power. Therefore, the balance between functionality and energy efficiency must be a delicate compromise. Especially for battery-powered devices or those installed in hard-to-reach places.”

According to Techxplore, the researchers have proposed using “flying fog computing” – something in between cloud computing when all the main work is done at a remote center, and conventional computing on end devices. Data storage and processing in fog architectures occurs at an additional layer between the cloud data center and other network elements.

Another element in fog computing implements drones that move to where the data needs to be processed, thus reducing network latency and improving network reliability and speed.

When comparing fog computing with a conventional IoT network, the average latency in both cases depended on the number of network nodes but was always lower in the drone network.

Muthanna concluded by stating: “Flying fog computing is a promising solution. We have shown their advantages compared to traditional schemes. The new data exchange model takes full advantage of the potential of such a network; it has surpassed traditional static edge computing—it reduces the average latency.”