AirSync 5 Architecture


AirSync 5 is specifically designed to manage millions of resource constrained devices in the smart grid and can be extended to support management features to practically any other type of device – "The Manager" of the Internet of Things (IoT). AirSync V5 is a flexible and extensible system using a collection of Application Servers cooperating to provide a comprehensive management system for the Smart Grid network. AirSync V5 can manage many different types of devices ranging from highly constrained battery power devices such as gas and water meters, sensors and actuators, to high-end infrastructure networking gear such as LTE and WiMAX base station, field area routers, and wi-fi access points. AirSync 5 was designed as a management system for the Internet of Things (IOT), so it can manage devices which are not directly part of the smart grid network, but may be part of the utility's enterprise network

The AirSync 5 platform is management protocol agnostic and is able to manage devices using CoAP, SNMP, HTTP (REST), and Proximetry's own proprietary management protocol (AMP). The AirSync server architecture is modular allowing for easy extensions to support new protocols and new types of devices. AirSync 5 is also database technology agnostic and supports several database technologies.

The AirSync Server architecture is shown in the figure below.

The AirSync 5 system is partitioned into three main subsystems:

  • Protocol Gateways:
    • The protocol gateways are designed to perform all the real time tasks related to managing the devices or endpoints. The Protocol Gateways insulate the App Servers from the protocol specific behavior, thus allowing for new protocols to be added with minimal impact on the rest of the system.
    • Each Protocol Gateway is scaled independently from all other Protocol Gateways, and from the App Servers. The hardware resources allocated to each Protocol Gateway are dependent on the supported protocol, and the number and type of devices managed by the Protocol Gateway.
  • AirSync Application Servers:
    • AirSync App Servers provide a functional partitioning of the complete management application. The system is designed such that each application is self-contained with minimum overlap of functionality between App Servers. For example, several App Servers use topology information to optimize certain management operations (e.g. Firmware Upgrade Server (FUS) and Configuration Management (CM)). These servers retrieve the topology information from the Topology Server. The Topology Server is the only entity in the system with the knowledge on how to collect the topology information from the network(s).
  • Visualization Server
    • The Visualization Server is the user facing component of AirSync. This server provides:
      • Web-based GUI for the user to manage and provision devices
      • User management
      • User access rights
      • Support for multi-tenant deployments
      • Dashboard view of device status
      • An extensible NBI (North Bound Interface) for interaction with external systems