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Edited by Javier Silvestre-Blanes, ISBN 978-953-307-024-7, 602 pages, Publisher: InTech, Chapters published March 01, 2010 under CC BY-NC-SA 3.0 license
Factory automation has evolved significantly in the last few decades, and is today a complex, interdisciplinary, scientific area. In this book a selection of papers on topics related to factory automation is presented, covering a broad spectrum, so that the reader may become familiar with the various fields, and also study them in more depth where required. Within various chapters in this book, special attention is given to distributed applications and their use of networks, since it is one of the most relevant subjects in the evolution of factory automation. Different Medium Access Control and networks are analyzed, while Ethernet and Wireless networks are looked at in more detail, since they are among the hottest topics in recent research. Another important subject is everything concerning the increase in the complexity of factory automation, and the need for flexibility and interoperability. Finally the use of multi-agent systems, advanced control, formal methods, or the application in this field of RFID, are additional examples of the ideas and disciplines that experts around the world have analyzed in their work.