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Real-time cross-layer routing protocol for ad hoc wireless sensor networks

Daabaj, K. and Ahmeda, S. (2011) Real-time cross-layer routing protocol for ad hoc wireless sensor networks. In: Schmidt, M., (ed.) Advances in Computer Science and Engineering. InTech open, pp. 71-94.

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Reliable and energy efficient routing is a critical issue in Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) deployments. Many approaches have been proposed for WSN routing, but sensor field implementations, compared to computer simulations and fully-controlled testbeds, tend to be lacking in the literature and not fully documented. Typically, WSNs provide the ability to gather information cheaply, accurately and reliably over both small and vast physical regions. Unlike other large data network forms, where the ultimate input/output interface is a human being, WSNs are about collecting data from unattended physical environments. Although WSNs are being studied on a global scale, the major current research is still focusing on simulations experiments. In particular for sensor networks, which have to deal with very stringent resource limitations and that are exposed to severe physical conditions, real experiments with real applications are essential. In addition, the effectiveness of simulation studies is severely limited in terms of the difficulty in modeling the complexities of the radio environment, power consumption on sensor devices, and the interactions between the physical, network and application layers. The routing problem in ad hoc WSNs is nontrivial issue because of sensor node failures due to restricted recourses. Thus, the routing protocols of WSNs encounter two conflicting issue: on the one hand, in order to optimise routes, frequent topology updates are required, while on the other hand, frequent topology updates result in imbalanced energy dissipation and higher message overhead.

In the literature, such as in (Rahul et al., 2002), (Woo et al., 2003), (TinyOS, 2004), (Gnawali et al., 2009) and (Burri et al., 2007) several authors have presented routing algorithms for WSNs that consider purely one or two metrics at most in attempting to optimise routes while attempting to keep small message overhead and balanced energy dissipation. Recent studies on energy efficient routing in multihop WSNs have shown a great reliance on radio link quality in the path selection process. If sensor nodes along the routing path and closer to the base station advertise a high quality link to forwarding upstream packets, these sensor nodes will experience a faster depletion rate in their residual energy. This results in a topological routing hole or network partitioning as stated and resolved in and (Daabaj 2010). This chapter presents an empirical study on how to improve energy efficiency for reliable multihop communication by developing a real-time cross-layer lifetime-oriented routing protocol and integrating useful routing information from different layers to examine their joint benefit on the lifetime of individual sensor nodes and the entire sensor network. The proposed approach aims to balance the workload and energy usage among relay nodes to achieve balanced energy dissipation, thereby maximizing the functional network lifetime. The obtained experimental results are presented from prototype real-network experiments based on Crossbow’s sensor motes (Crossbow, 2010), i.e., Mica2 low-power wireless sensor platforms (Crossbow, 2010). The distributed real-time routing protocol which is proposed In this chapter aims to face the dynamics of the real world sensor networks and also to discover multiple paths between the base station and source sensor nodes. The proposed routing protocol is compared experimentally with a reliability-oriented collection-tree protocol, i.e., the TinyOS MintRoute protocol (Woo et al., 2003). The experimental results show that our proposed protocol has a higher node energy efficiency, lower control overhead, and fair average delay.

Publication Type: Book Chapter
Murdoch Affiliation: School of Information Technology
Publisher: InTech open
Copyright: Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 3.0
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