A simulation study on smart grid resilience under software-defined networking controller failures

Uttam Ghosh, Zbigniew Kalbarczyk, Xinshu Dong, David K.Y. Yau, Rui Tan, Ravishankar K. Iyer

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference contribution

Abstract

Riding on the success of SDN for enterprise and data center networks, recently researchers have shown much interest in applying SDN for critical infrastructures. A key concern, however, is the vulnerability of the SDN controller as a single point of failure. In this paper, we develop a cyber-physical simulation platform that interconnects Mininet (an SDN emulator), hardware SDN switches, and PowerWorld (a high-fidelity, industry-strength power grid simulator). We report initial experiments on how a number of representative controller faults may impact the delay of smart grid communications. We further evaluate how this delay may affect the performance of the underlying physical system, namely automatic gain control (AGC) as a fundamental closed-loop control that regulates the grid frequency to a critical nominal value. Our results show that when the fault-induced delay reaches seconds (e.g., more than four seconds in some of our experiments), degradation of the AGC becomes evident. Particularly, the AGC is most vulnerable when it is in a transient following say step changes in loading, because the significant state fluctuations will exacerbate the effects of using a stale system state in the control.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Title of host publicationCPSS 2016 - Proceedings of the 2nd ACM International Workshop on Cyber-Physical System Security, Co-located with Asia CCS 2016
PublisherAssociation for Computing Machinery
Pages52-58
Number of pages7
ISBN (Electronic)9781450342889
DOIs
StatePublished - May 30 2016
Externally publishedYes
Event2nd ACM International Workshop on Cyber-Physical System Security, CPSS 2016 - Xi'an, China
Duration: May 30 2016 → …

Publication series

NameCPSS 2016 - Proceedings of the 2nd ACM International Workshop on Cyber-Physical System Security, Co-located with Asia CCS 2016

Other

Other2nd ACM International Workshop on Cyber-Physical System Security, CPSS 2016
Country/TerritoryChina
CityXi'an
Period5/30/16 → …

Keywords

  • Attacks
  • Faults
  • Smart grid
  • Software-defined networking

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Computer Networks and Communications
  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Information Systems

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