Possible Thesis Topics

Below are listed a few possible thesis topics. Interested students will be co-supervised by Dr. Farooq, an adjunct faculty member in the department and Prof. Kunz. If you are interested in any of these topics, please contact Prof. Kunz at tkunz@sce.carleton.ca.

The topics all center around LoRa, a popular low-power wide area networking technology, and LoRaWAN is the corresponding MAC layer protocol. The description of the topics is somewhat high-level, to give you an idea as to what we are proposing. More detailed discussions will follow once you indicated interest in one of the topics. Dr. Farooq recently published a few papers listed below, which you can also take a look at to get a feel for the sort of research in thiis field.

(i)                  Evaluation of Multi-Gateway LoRaWAN with Different Data Traffic Models

(ii)                A Search into a Suitable Channel Access Control Protocol for LoRa-Based Networks

(iii)               Analyzing LoRa: a Use Case Perspective

(iv)              Poster: Extended LoRaSim to Simulate Multiple IoT Applications in a LoRaWAN


         LoRa supports different PHY layer parameter settings that impacts reliability, coverage, and data rate. One particular topic would be to study the impact of LoRa PHY parameters on different IoT use cases considering single hop and multi-hop networks. The question that needs to be answered is that, considering different use cases, what settings can be used to achieve desired performance level.

         LoRaWAN is the MAC layer for LoRa, and it uses Aloha as the MAC protocol. Investigating other MAC layer protocols for LoRa technology is another research avenue that can be explored. One of the papers above is directly related to this topic, published in IEEE LCN.

         Protocols above Layer 2 are not available in LoRa. One recent research paper uses RPL on a networking layer protocol for LoRa-based networks. A possible research area is to explore further options that can reduce the control overhead and suits the limitations imposed by LoRa.

         Similarly, a research project would devise appropriate transport layer and application layer protocols for LoRa. For example, this would involve investigating whether using CoAP for different LoRa IoT use cases works well and suits the limitation imposed by LoRa. Alternatively, one needs to devise new protocol(s).

         If layer 3 and above are using different protocols rather than protocols available in TCP/IP protocol stack, devise an interoperability framework so that LoRa nodes can communicate with TCP/IP-based nodes.