Simulation and analysis of critical network infrastructures in cities

Project Description

Simulation and analysis of critical network infrastructures in cities

Cities and their agglomerations are home to a large number of critical infrastructures (CI) that provide essential services in a geographically narrow space and are thus physically and logically dependent on one another. This results in a sensitive network of organizations and connections in which incidents within an infrastructure can have an impact on the entire system. In particular, critical infrastructures in the context of utilities (electricity, gas, water, etc.), communication (ICT), distribution (food, fuel, etc.) and transport (road, rail, etc.) operate extensive networks which have special requirements with regard to security measures. Thus, a detailed risk analysis with a strong focus on the interaction of these networks and on potential cascading effects for the population represents a central aspect for the protection of these critical supply infrastructures, especially when considering the Network and Information Security (NIS) Law. Further, also the so-called "soft targets", i.e. attractive targets in public spaces for terrorist attacks, would have an impact on the above mentioned networks in case of an attack. The goal of the ODYSSEUS project is to create a simulation-based, cross-domain risk model, based on the example of the City of Vienna, which describes the networks of the central supply infrastructures (electricity, gas, water, food and telecommunications, including ICT) as well as the transport networks (road and rail) up to a certain level of abstraction. This level should be kept as low as possible in order to achieve as real a representation as possible (depending on the quantity and quality of data available). Based on this model, potential threats (both natural disasters and man-made incidents) are simulated. In contrast to existing solutions from literature and practice, ODYSSEUS focuses on the dynamic relationships between networks and develops mathematical models from stochastics (e.g. Markov chains, probabilistic automata) for a realistic representation. The central output of ODYSSEUS is a framework that enables a detailed assessment of the effects of threats both on individual critical infrastructures and on possible cascading effects within the entire network of critical supply infrastructures, taking into account the urban population. The simulations describe which potential compensation and displacement mechanisms can be expected within the multi-layered network of supply infrastructures or on public spaces in the event of an incident (intentional, technical or natural hazard). From this knowledge, targeted preventive safety measures can be derived, presented and evaluated in order to minimize the effects in the event of an incident when implemented.



ODYSSEUS is funded by the FFG/KIRAS (873539)


01.10.2019 - 30.09.2021


Simulation, Analysis, critical network infrastructures


AIT Austrian Institute of Technology GmbH
Contact: Dr. DI Stefan Schauer