Wireless Networks

, Volume 11, Issue 3, pp 333-340

First online:

Improving Wireless Sensor Network Lifetime through Power Aware Organization

  • Mihaela CardeiAffiliated withDepartment of Computer Science and Engineering, Florida Atlantic University Email author 
  • , Ding-Zhu DuAffiliated withDepartment of Computer Science and Engineering, University of Minnesota

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A critical aspect of applications with wireless sensor networks is network lifetime. Battery-powered sensors are usable as long as they can communicate captured data to a processing node. Sensing and communications consume energy, therefore judicious power management and scheduling can effectively extend operational time. To monitor a set of targets with known locations when ground access in the monitored area is prohibited, one solution is to deploy the sensors remotely, from an aircraft. The loss of precise sensor placement would then be compensated by a large sensor population density in the drop zone, that would improve the probability of target coverage. The data collected from the sensors is sent to a central node for processing. In this paper we propose an efficient method to extend the sensor network operational time by organizing the sensors into a maximal number of disjoint set covers that are activated successively. Only the sensors from the current active set are responsible for monitoring all targets and for transmitting the collected data, while nodes from all other sets are in a low-energy sleep mode. In this paper we address the maximum disjoint set covers problem and we design a heuristic that computes the sets. Theoretical analysis and performance evaluation results are presented to verify our approach.


wireless sensor networks energy efficiency node organization disjoint set covers