Packet switching technology in pipeline networks

Short description

Modern data networks are difficult to imagine without the use of packet switching technology. Each packet contains the recipient address in the header and network infrastructure presented by switches and routers will deliver it exactly to the right destination.

We think it is high time for packet switching technology to be used in pipeline systems transporting oil, water and other products. Then the "body" of the packet is a portion of the transported product (substance), and the "header" of the packet is formed by a specific set of Micro RFID tags, which mark (by mixing or injection) a small portion of the transported material. These packets are transmitted through the pipeline network consisting of senders and recipients (hosts), pipes (links), pumps (repeaters) and Pipeline routers.

Pipeline routers have scanners for RFID tags. All incoming packets are scanned, the recipient address is determined, and in accordance with the routing table, packet is forwarded to one or another pipeline for further transportation to the recipient.

Consider applying this idea as an example for the public utilities networks:

In the traditional design 5 pipelines from service distributor to houses are installed, which provide heating, hot water, cold water. The new design will require only 2 pipelines (forward and reverse).
Packet switching technology in pipeline networks
Packet switching technology in pipeline networks

Pipeline Router A receives the service flows from the Distributor, segments them into packets, marks each packet (push tags) and consistently forwards them to the router B. Pipeline router B removes the tag from the received packet (pop tags) and in accordance with the routing table, sends them into a certain pipe.

This technology will significantly reduce the number of pipelines in all industries (especially oil extraction and processing industry) and will allow using existing pipelines more efficiently.

The technology has its limitations (and they should be taken into account) associated with the mutual influence of adjacent packets on each other. The problems are the longitudinal mixing and heat exchange between packets with different temperatures (hot water, cold water). "Cold" packets will be heated, and hot will get cold.

It is possible to handle these restrictions and reduce their impact to acceptable levels by the following measures:

  1. Ensuring that throughout the pipeline the flow inside it remains laminar. This will reduce the longitudinal mixing.
  2. Flow rate increase will reduce the contact time of packets with each other. And as a consequence mutual influence will be reduced.
  3. The packets' MTU can be maximally increased. One "long" packet is better than two "short" ones because one packet has just 2 contact points with adjacent packets.
  4. Another option is to insert a "separating" packet between the packets which can be of chemically inert substance with low thermal conductivity.
We think this trend is very promising. It can cover not only transportation but also the distribution (of oil, gasoline, water, and other products). Cisco would be able to use all the experience of processing and transmission of information in the implementation of this idea.

OSI model is not complete with the 7 layers; there is one more – the 8-th layer – the material one .

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The part that gets me is that pealcs like McDonald's actually benefit from a weak economy So, if there's any time for condiments to be free, it should be now. They're not suffering. They're just being greedy.
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