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RT-Link: A Time-Synchronized Link Protocol for Energy Constrained Multi-hop Wireless Networks



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RT Link A Time Synchronized Link Protocol for Energy Constrained Multi hop Wireless Networks Anthony Rowe Rahul Mangharam Raj Rajkumar Electrical and Computer Engineering Department Carnegie Mellon University Pittsburgh Technical Report CMU ECE TR05 08 Abstract Multi hop wireless networks of embedded nodes facilitate applications in industrial control surveillance and inventory tracking Our focus is on low cost large scale deployments where nodes need to be battery powered with predictable network lifetimes and applications require bounded end toend delay An effective approach to such energy constrained networks is to operate at low duty cycles and maximize the shutdown interval between packet exchanges The primary challenge is in coordinating transmissions so they are collision free while minimizing the duration the nodes are active RT Link is a time synchronized link protocol for fixed and mobile embedded radios We identify three key observations in the design and deployment of RT Link a RT Link offers predictable network lifetime with bounded end to end delay b Achieving global time synchronization is both economical and convenient for indoor and outdoor deployments c Due to interference between nodes our experiments confirm that nodes with the same schedule must be spaced by a minimum of 3 hops Furthermore to minimize end to end delay it is more important to order time slots than to minimize the number of time slots RT Link has been deployed on networks with more than 30 custom embedded nodes and uses the IEEE 802 14 5 physical layer It outperforms energyefficient protocols such as B MAC and S MAC in throughput energy consumption and end to end delay 1 Introduction Networks of embedded wireless nodes provide a versatile platform for applications in industrial control surveillance and inventory tracking The purpose of such networks is to gather data and deliver it across one or more hops to at least one gateway The principal requirements are low cost battery



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