Pardeep Kumar, Mesut Günes,
MAC Protocols for Low-latency and Energy-efficient WSN Applications,
Freie Universität Berlin, No. TR-B-08-18, December 2008.

Abstract: Most of medium access control (MAC) protocols proposed for wireless sensor networks (WSN) are targeted only for single main objective, the energy efficiency. Other critical parameters such as low-latency, adaptivity to traffic conditions, scalability, system fairness, and bandwidth utilization are mostly overleaped or dealt as secondary objectives. The demand to address those issues increases with the growing interest in cheap, low-power, low-distance, and embedded WSNs. In this report, along with other vital parameters, we discuss suitability and limitations of different WSN MAC protocols for time critical and energy-efficient applications. As an example, we discuss the working of IEEE 802.15.4 in detail, explore its limitations, and derive efficient application-specific network parameter settings for time, energy, and bandwidth critical applications. Eventually, a new WSN MAC protocol Asynchronous Real-time Energy-efficient and Adaptive MAC (AREA-MAC) is proposed, which is intended to deal efficiently with time critical applications, and at the same time, to provide a better trade-offbetween other vital parameters, such as energy-efficiency, system fairness, throughput, scalability, and adaptivity to traffic conditions. On the other hand, two different optimization problems have been formulated using application-based traffic generating scenario to minimize network latency and maximize its lifetime.


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