Secure and Reliable Wireless Communication for Control Systems

Award Information
Agency: Department of Homeland Security
Branch: N/A
Contract: NBCHC080060
Agency Tracking Number: 721033
Amount: $100,000.00
Phase: Phase I
Program: SBIR
Awards Year: 2007
Solicitation Year: N/A
Solicitation Topic Code: N/A
Solicitation Number: N/A
Small Business Information
Toyon Research Corporation
6800 Cortona Drive, Goleta, CA, 93117
HUBZone Owned: N
Woman Owned: N
Socially and Economically Disadvantaged: N
Principal Investigator
 Richard Cagley
 Senior Analyst
 (805) 968-6787
Business Contact
 Marcella Lindbery
Title: Director of Finance
Phone: (805) 968-6787
Research Institution
Just as WiFi has become the de facto standard for wireless home networking, IEEE 802.15.4 is quickly becoming the standard of choice for machinery control, building monitoring, and a host of other industrial, commercial, and government control system functions. However, along with increasing popularity of this standard comes new risks in terms of cyber security. Indeed, as the wireless physical and medium access control (MAC) layers are now standard for many control systems, it is becoming easier to eavesdrop and spoof these networks. As these wireless control systems begin to be used for high-value applications, such as commuter transportation, plant automation, and traffic control, there is increasing risk of tampering. In this effort, Toyon proposes to develop a wireless control system that augments existing wireless technology in order to provide both the ease of plug-and-play sensor installation and operation as well as a high level of security. This will be provided through the use of the IEEE 802.15.4 standard operating in the 915 MHz ISM band as well as cognitive radio capability at the network layer for increasing link and overall network reliability. Both AES data encryption and two-way authentication will be used to provide data protection as well as connection verification.

* information listed above is at the time of submission.

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