Chapter 2

Energy-Efficient Backbones and Broadcasting in Sensor and Actuator Networks

Hai Liu1, Amiya Nayak2, and Ivan Stojmenovic2

1Hong Kong Baptist University, Hong Kong, P.R. China

2School of Information Technology Engineering, University of Ottawa, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada K1N 6N5


This chapter first discusses backbones as subsets of sensors or actuators that suffice for performing basic data communication operations. They are applied in this chapter for energy-efficient broadcasting. In a broadcasting (also known as data dissemination) task, a message is to be sent from one node, which could be a sink or an actuator, to all the sensors or all the actuators in the network. The goal is to minimize the number of rebroadcasts while attempting to deliver messages to all sensors or actuators. Neighbor detection and route discovery algorithms that consider a realistic physical layer are described. An adaptive broadcasting protocol without parameters, suitable for delay tolerant-networks, is further discussed. We also survey existing solutions for minimal energy broadcasting problems, where nodes can adjust their transmission powers.

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