Timebeat - PTP+Squared Overlay Network
Synchronisation Grid

PTP+Squared

Through auto discovery and configuration the Squared overlay network is a seamless addition to your standard PTP environment creating nanosecond sync and lossless distribution.

Zero-touch provisioning. Resilient. Self-healing. Automated optimisation.

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Many-to-Many Synchronisation

PTP+Squared is simply a combination of classic PTP unicast sessions between hosts setup automatically by a peer-to-peer network. The overlay peer-to-peer network uses a Distributed Hash Table and PubSub to perform common mesh / grid tasks:

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    PTP source capacity announcement: Using efficient "PubSub" message routing
    (real-time unicast sessions available for PTP distribution).

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    PTP unicast setup, maintenance and teardown
    (fully automated timing grid creation and shutdown).

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    Time error dissemination upstream and downstream
    (total time error disseminated through the network for a true device to source offset).

PTP+Squared Grafana Panel
PTP+Squared uses cumulative error to determine best path

Intelligent Automated Mesh Creation

If every node can automatically set itself up to receive time from the best sources available and distribute time to other sources with zero intervention and the transmission is nearly lossless, then there are some cool things that follow as a result

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    As time is propagated from node to node the root distance is increased for every hop

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    The cumulative error of the source is used to determine the hop cost

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    Additionally static hop costs can be added

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    This approach ensures that we form a directed acyclic graph #LoopFree

Fully Traceable Time!

Single path is single-point-of-failure

Classic PTP: Only Single source

A key challenge with the boundary clock based distribution model is that time is not delivered from a central point that can be monitored easily. Instead each and every boundary clock becomes a potential source of error.

Each point introduces the chance of error, each cable between these points introduces the possibility of error.

So long as the time feed from every boundary clock is not monitored by comparing it to several independent sources it leaves open the possibility that error in the system goes unnoticed.

PTP+Squared: Multiple independent sources

Timebeat takes a much more robust approach by allowing individual nodes in the network to compare time received from the

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    existing boundary clock distribution network

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    from an independent source of time

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    and from other nodes in the network.

Multiple path topology is high resillient

Green is good... Red is bad... :-)

Timekeeping-in-a-nutshell

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    With only a single source of time you cannot determine if it is correct.

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    With two sources of time, then it is safe to assume that if they agree with each other then they are both correct, but if they do not, then it is impossible to determine which one is right and which one is wrong. (for MiFID2/Finra regulation purposes this is a dangerous situation to be in).

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    With three sources of time, where one does not agree with the other two, then you will always be able to tell which source is divergent.