Scaling beyond Bandwidth Limitations: Wireless Control with Stability Guarantees under Overload

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An important class of cyber-physical systems relies on multiple agents that jointly perform a task by coordinating their actions over a wireless network. Examples include self-driving cars in intelligent transportation and production robots in smart manufacturing. However, the scalability of existing control-over-wireless solutions is limited as they cannot resolve overload situations in which the communication demand exceeds the available bandwidth. This article presents a novel co-design of distributed control and wireless communication that overcomes this limitation by dynamically allocating the available bandwidth to agents with the greatest need to communicate. Experiments on a real cyber-physical testbed with 20 agents, each consisting of a low-power wireless embedded device and a cart-pole system, demonstrate that our solution achieves significantly better control performance under overload than the state of the art. We further prove that our co-design guarantees closed-loop stability for physical systems with stochastic linear time-invariant dynamics.


Original languageEnglish
Article number20
Number of pages30
JournalACM Transactions on Cyber-Physical Systems
Issue number3
Publication statusPublished - 1 Sept 2022

External IDs

dblp journals/tcps/MagerBHTZ22
Mendeley 33e6fc94-67f0-34f5-8ee1-bc8fb19d1b5c
Scopus 85141056252



  • Wireless control, cyber-physical systems, multi-hop networks, multi-agent systems, closed-loop stability, network overload