, Volume 43, Issue 2, pp 193-228
Date: 16 Nov 2012

Characteristics and classification of outlier detection techniques for wireless sensor networks in harsh environments: a survey

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Wireless sensor networks (WSNs) have received considerable attention for multiple types of applications. In particular, outlier detection in WSNs has been an area of vast interest. Outlier detection becomes even more important for the applications involving harsh environments, however, it has not received extensive treatment in the literature. The identification of outliers in WSNs can be used for filtration of false data, find faulty nodes and discover events of interest. This paper presents a survey of the essential characteristics for the analysis of outlier detection techniques in harsh environments. These characteristics include, input data type, spatio-temporal and attribute correlations, user specified thresholds, outlier types(local and global), type of approach(distributed/centralized), outlier identification(event or error), outlier degree, outlier score, susceptibility to dynamic topology, non-stationarity and inhomogeneity. Moreover, the prioritization of various characteristics has been discussed for outlier detection techniques in harsh environments. The paper also gives a brief overview of the classification strategies for outlier detection techniques in WSNs and discusses the feasibility of various types of techniques for WSNs deployed in harsh environments.