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Analysis of TDMA scheduling by means of Egyptian Fractions for real-time WSNs

Author(s): Torfs Wim | Blondia Chris

Journal: EURASIP Journal on Wireless Communications and Networking
ISSN 1687-1472

Volume: 2011;
Issue: 1;
Start page: 37;
Date: 2011;
Original page

Abstract In Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs), Time Division Multiple Access (TDMA) is a well-studied subject. TDMA has, however, the reputation of being a rigid access method and many TDMA protocols have issues regarding the entering or leaving of sensors or have a predetermined upper limit on the number of nodes in the network. In this article, we present a flexible TDMA access method for passive sensors, that is, sensors that are constant bitrate sources. The presented protocol poses no bounds on the number of nodes, yet provides a stable framing that ensures proper operation, while it fosters that every sensor gets its data on time at the sink and this in a fair fashion. Even more, the latency of the transmission is deterministic and thereby enabling real-time communication. The protocol is developed, keeping in mind the practical limitations of actual hardware, limiting the memory usage and the communication overhead. The schedule that determines when a sensor can send can be encoded in a very small footprint and needs to be sent only once. As soon as the sensor has received its schedule, it can calculate for the rest of its lifetime when it is allowed to send.
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