Improved coverage through area-based localization in wireless sensor networks

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Ensuring area coverage is one of the key requirements of wireless sensor networks (WSNs). When nodes are randomly placed in the area of interest, redundancy is often provisioned in order to lower the probability of having voids, where part of the area is not within the detection range of any sensor. To extend the lifetime of the network, a duty cycle mechanism is often applied in which only a subset of the nodes are activated at a certain time while the other nodes switch to low-power mode. The set of active nodes are changed over time in order to balance the load on the individual sensors. The selection of active nodes is subject to meeting the coverage requirement. Assessing the coverage of a sensor is based on knowing its position. However, localization schemes usually yield a margin of errors which diminishes the coverage fidelity. Conservative approaches for mitigating the position inaccuracy assume the worst-case error across the network and end up activating excessive number of nodes and reduces the network lifetime. In this paper, we present an approach for estimating a bound on the maximum error for the position of each sensor and propose a distributed algorithm for achieving high fidelity coverage while engaging only a subset of the sensors. The simulation results confirm the performance advantages of our approach.
Distributed algorithms, Probability, Telecommunication network reliability, Wireless sensor networks