[Resource Topic] 2019/1138: ChainSplitter: Towards Blockchain-based Industrial IoT Architecture for Supporting Hierarchical Storage

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ChainSplitter: Towards Blockchain-based Industrial IoT Architecture for Supporting Hierarchical Storage

Authors: Gang Wang, Zhijie Jerry Shi, Mark Nixon, Song Han


The fast developing Industrial Internet of Things (IIoT) technologies provide a promising opportunity to build large-scale systems to connect numerous heterogeneous devices into the Internet. Most existing IIoT infrastructures are based on a centralized architecture, which is easier for management but cannot effectively support immutable and verifiable services among multiple parties. Blockchain technology provides many desired features for large-scale IIoT infrastructures, such as decentralization, trustworthiness, trackability, and immutability. This paper presents a blockchain-based IIoT architecture to support immutable and verifiable services. However, when applying blockchain technology to the IIoT infrastructure, the required storage space posts a grant challenge to resource-constrained IIoT infrastructures. To address the storage issue, this paper proposes a hierarchical blockchain storage structure, \textit{ChainSplitter}. Specially, the proposed architecture features a hierarchical storage structure where the majority of the blockchain is stored in the clouds, while the most recent blocks are stored in the overlay network of the individual IIoT networks. The proposed architecture seamlessly binds local IIoT networks, the blockchain overlay network, and the cloud infrastructure together through two connectors, the \textit{blockchain connector} and the \textit{cloud connector}, to construct the hierarchical blockchain storage. The blockchain connector in the overlay network builds blocks in blockchain from data generated in IIoT networks, and the cloud connector resolves the blockchain synchronization issues between the overlay network and the clouds. We also provide a case study to show the efficiency of the proposed hierarchical blockchain storage in a practical Industrial IoT case.

ePrint: https://eprint.iacr.org/2019/1138

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