Wireless Sensor Networks
“Sensor networks are the key to gathering the information needed by smart environments, whether in buildings, utilities, industrial, home, shipboard, transportation systems automation, or elsewhere. Recent terrorist and guerrilla warfare countermeasures require distributed networks of sensors that can be deployed using, e.g. aircraft, and have self-organizing capabilities. In such applications, running wires or cabling is usually impractical. A sensor network is required that is fast and easy to install and maintain.” (Lewis, 2004)
Wireless sensor network commonly known as WSN, as the name states it is a wireless network which consists of self-sufficient devices that are widely distributed. These devices use sensors to monitor physical and environmental conditions for example sound, temperature, impact or vibrations. The recorded data is passed through a gateway that is provided by the WSN to the main location “wired world”.
(National Instruments, n.d.)
A wireless sensor network device commonly consists of several technical components such as, Radio, Battery, Microcontroller, Analog circuit and sensor interface. A wireless sensor network device is normally required to have a battery life of around 3 years, to enable this most of the WSN systems are based on ZigBee. ZigBee provides efficient wireless connectivity between small packet devices. The reason for this choice is that ZigBee devices can sustain themselves on a small battery for many months or years. A common choice of battery for a WSN device is carbon zinc or alkaline batteries as they are widely available and come at a low cost. To extend the battery life a WSN device is programmed at certain intervals to wake up and transmit data, this is done by powering on the radio and off again to save on battery usage and conserve energy. To ensure that this process is efficient and data is...
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