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Physical layer security in power line communication networks: an emerging scenario, other than wireless

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2 Author(s)
Pittolo, A. ; Dept. of Electr., Mech. & Manage. Eng. (DIEGM), Univ. of Udine, Udine, Italy ; Tonello, A.M.

The authors consider the secure transmission of information over power line communication (PLC) networks. The focus is on the secrecy guaranteed at the physical layer, named physical layer security (PLS). Although PLS has been deeply investigated for the wireless case, it is not the same for the PLC environment. Thus, starting from the knowledge in the wireless context, the authors extend the results to typical PLC scenarios. In particular, the PLC channel statistics is evaluated and a performance comparison among PLC and wireless channels is performed, in terms of secrecy rate distribution. For the PLC case, the secrecy rate distribution, under a total power constraint, is evaluated for both optimal and uniform power distributions in broadband channels. To provide experimental evidence, the authors consider channel measures obtained in an in-home measurement campaign. The underlying network presents a tree topology, which introduces frequency and spatial correlation among channels, and suffers from the keyhole effect, generated by branches that depart from the same node. As shown by the numerical results, these effects can reduce the secrecy rate. Finally, the authors evaluate the secrecy rate region for the multi-user broadcast channel considering both simulated channel realisations and experimental channel measures.

Published in:

Communications, IET  (Volume:8 ,  Issue: 8 )