AbstractsComputer Science

Wake-up radio systems : design, development, performance evaluation and comparison to conventional medium access control protocols for wireless sensor networks

by Joaquim Oller i Bosch

Institution: Universitat Politècnica de Catalunya
Year: 2015
Record ID: 1126860
Full text PDF: http://hdl.handle.net/10803/288305


During the recent years, the research related to Wake-up Radio (WuR) systems has gained noticeable interest. In WuR systems, a node initiating a communication first sends a Wake-up Call (WuC) by means of its Wake-up Transmitter (WuTx), to the Wake-up Receiver (WuRx) of a remote node to activate it in an on-demand manner. Until the reception of the WuC, the node's MCU and main data transceiver are in sleep mode. Hence, WuR drastically reduce the power required by wireless nodes. This thesis provides a complete analysis of several WuR designs vs. conventional MAC protocols for Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN). The research is performed in an incremental fashion and includes hardware, softwar and simulation topics. WuR systems enable energy savings in plenty of different applications, e.g., retrieving information from environmental pollution sensors placed in a city by a mobile collector node, or activating a sleeping wireless AP. They are easy to program in and provide implicit synchronization. However, achieving a good WuRx design may become a challenge because power amplifiers cannot be used for the sake of energy. The system proposed in chapter 2 is a successful WuR system prototype. The so-called SµA-WuRx is less complex than commercial WuR systems, it is cheaper from the monetary point of view, requires several times less energy and allows for up to 15 meters of communication, an adequate value for WuR systems. However, the system can be improved by including several desirable features, such as longer operational ranges and/or addressing mechanisms. The so-called Time-Knocking (TicK) addressing strategy, analyzed in chapter 3, enables energy efficient node addressing by varying the time between WuCs received by a MCU. TicK allows for variable length addresses and multicast. A WuR system may not fit any possible application. Thus, while the SµA-WuRx and TicK efficiently solved many of the requirements of single-hop and data-collector applications, they lack of flexibility. Instead, SCM-WuR systems in chapter 4 feature an outstanding trade-off between hardware complexity, current consumption and operational range, and even enable multi-hop wake-up for long remote sensor measure collection. To contextualize the WuR systems developed, chapter 5 provides an overview of the most important WuR systems as of 2014. Developing a MAC protocol which performs acceptably in a wide range of diverse applications is a very difficult task. Comparatively, SCM-WuR systems perform properly in all the use cases (single and multi-hop) presented in chapter 6. Bluetooth Low Energy, or BLE, appears as a duty-cycled MAC protocol mainly targeting single-hop applications. Because of its clearly defined use cases and its integration with its upper application layers, BLE appears as an extremely energy-efficient protocol that cannot be easily replaced by WuR. Because of all these aspects, the performance of BLE is analyzed in chapter 7. Finally, chapter 8 tries to solve one of the issues affecting WuR systems, that is, the need for extra…