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Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction

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1. Introduction

. Wireless Underground Communication Networks (WUCNs) constitute one of the promising application areas of the recently developed wireless networking techniques. The WUCNs consist of wireless devices that operate below the ground surface. These devices are either (i) buried completely under dense soil or (ii) placed within a bounded open underground space such as underground mines and road/subway tunnels. In the former case, networks of wireless nodes are buried underground and communicate through soil. Underground wireless communication enables a wide variety of novel applications, including soil condition monitoring, earthquake and landslide prediction, underground infrastructure monitoring, sports-field turf management, landscape management,

border patrol and security, etc. However, underground is a challenging environment for wireless communication. The propagation medium is no longer air but soil, rock and water where the well-established terrestrial wireless communication do not work well Using of electromagnetic waves in underground has several disadvantages. Magnetic induction(MI) seems a better choice. A detailed analysis on the path loss and bandwidth of the MI communication channel in underground environments was analysed. Then based on the analysis, we develop the MI waveguide technique for WUSNs, which can significantly reduce the path loss, enlarge the transmission range and achieve practical bandwidth for MI communication in underground environments. Here some small coils are deployed between the transmitter and the receiver as relay points, which form a discontinuous waveguide that transmit the MI waves.

Govt. Engineering College, Thrissur

Second.2 Magnetic Induction Magnetic induction (MI) is a promising alternative physical layer technique for underground wireless networks in deep burial depth. silt. Third. soil makeup (sand. Thrissur . Consequently. Engineering College. As the transmission distance r increases. It can address the problems on the dynamic channel condition and the large antenna size of the EM waves techniques.1 Electro Magnetic waves Traditional wireless communication techniques using electromagnetic (EM) waves encounter three major problems in underground environments: the high path loss. 2. the path loss is highly dependent on numerous soil properties such as water content. magnetic field strength falls off much faster(1/r3)than the EM waves (1/r2) in terrestrial environment. or clay) and density. large size antenna is necessary for the efficient propagation of EM waves. EM waves experience high levels of attenuation due to absorption by soil. The problems faced by electro-magnetic waves lead to using of Magnetic induction as a means of communication underground. The total path loss of the MI system is lower than the EM wave. 2. and can change dramatically with time and space. Path loss can be reduced if lower operating frequencies are used. More over transmission and reception are accomplished using small coil of wire. and water in the underground. Govt. The MI channel conditions remain constant. CHALLENGES FACED As said earlier underground unlike terrestrial network is a challenging environment for communication. rock. However. MI is generally unfavourable for terrestrial wireless communication. the dynamic channel condition and the large antenna size.Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 2 2. the bit error rate (BER) of the communication system also varies dramatically in different times or positions. First.

Govt. which can significantly reduce the path loss. Unlike the simple transmitter receiver model of MI communication. Engineering College.3 MI Waveguide Taking into account all the limitations mentioned above.Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 3 2. in MI waveguide several coils are placed between transmitter and receiver which forms a continuous waveguide. Thrissur . enlarge the transmission range and achieve practical bandwidth for MI communication in underground environments. MI waveguide technique is developed for WUSNs.

respectively and r is the distance between the transmitter and receiver.1 MI Channel model In MI communications. the transmission and reception are accomplished with the use of a coil of wire. as shown in first row of Fig. 1:MI Communication channel model Govt. the transmission and reception are accomplished with the use of a coil of wire. 1 2. Thrissur .Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 4 3.CHANNEL MODELING In MI communications. 1. where at and ar are the radii of the transmission coil and receiving coil. \ Fig. Engineering College. as shown in first row of Fig.

and fis the system operating frequency.where is the angle frequency of thetransmitting signal. as shown in Fig.1. R0is the resistance of a unit length of the loop.Ntand Nr are the number of turns of the transmitter coil and receiving coil. the load impedance is designed to be equal to the complex conjugate of the output impedance of the secondary loop i. The interaction between the two coupled coils is represented by the mutual induction.e. Thrissur ..i. 1 2. Govt. Substitute (1) into (2)and then the ratio of the receiving power to the transmitting power is : . .Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 5 2..(2)  The resistance is determined by the material.Therefore. Engineering College.2Calculation of received power In the equivalent circuit.e. respectively. The receiving power is equal to the power consumed in the load impedance ZL .1.respectively.This current can induce another sinusoidal current in thereceiver then accomplish the communication. «(1) To maximize the circuit efficiency. the size and the number of turns of the coil: «(3) Where. . the MI transmitter and receiver can be modeledas the primary coil and the secondary coil of a transformer.. the transmitting power is equal to the power consumed in the primary loop.1Equivalent circuit Suppose the signal in the transmitter coil is a sinusoidal current.

high signal frequency and large number of turns are employed. Govt. Thus we can see that the MI technique has constant channel condition while the EM wave technique provides lower attenuation rate.(5) into (2) and if a low-resistance .(4). The receiving power of MI communication attenuates much faster than the EM wave case (1/r 6vs 1/r2). The Friis transmission equation for the EM wave communication is given by  It shows that the higher operating frequency induces higher path loss in the EM wave case but achieves lower attenuation rate in the MI case. Engineering College. equation is further simplified:    «(4) Thus we see that the received power loss is a 6th ±order function of the transmission range r. •‹ The self-inductance can be derived as «(5) By substituting (3). Thrissur .Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 6 Since the coil is modeled as a magnetic dipole. using Stokes¶ theorm the mutual inductance can be calculated as.

dis the distance between the transmitter and the receiverand .A typical MI waveguide structure is shown in Fig. is the radius of the coils.1. Different from the relay points using the EM wave technique. 2. Engineering College. Each relay coil(including the transmitter coil and the receiver coil) is loadedwith a capacitor. 2 . 2.Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 7 2.r is the distance between the neighbour coils. the MI relay point is just a simple coil without any energy source or processing device.2 MI Waveguide model In MI waveguide model the transmission range is increased by employing some relay points between the receiver and transmitter. where only adjacent coils are coupled as in Fig. 2: MI Waveguide model Govt.1Equivalent circuit The MI waveguide is modeled as a multi-stage transformer. Fig. hence the totalnumber of coils isn . wheren-2 relay coils equally spaced along oneaxis between the transmitter and the receiver. Thrissur .

Thrissur . Engineering College. the MI waveguide path loss can be greatly reduced.  Under condition of high frequency and large number of turns employed equation becomes.  Then the MI waveguide path loss becomes. In equation (9) if the last term with exponent 2n converges to unity. Govt. Thus we get. So a capacitor is introduced in each coil with.   Designing operating frequency and no of turns to reduce path loss. the ratio of the receiving power to the transmitting power can be derived as follows.2.2Calculation of received power By utilizing the equivalent circuit of the transformer.Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 8 2.

Engineering College.1 m. lower the path loss. Thrissur . Longer the r .Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 9 Thus we see that the path loss is a function of the number of relay points n. Larger the value of n. Then the relay interval would be 1 m. N and . higher the path loss. n is determined by transmission distance d and relay distance r. The capacitor value C is determined by a. We assume that the operating frequency is several hundred MHz and the coil radius is 0. Govt.

Path loss with different wire resistance and relay distance Govt. 3.1 Path loss The transmission medium has significant influence in the path loss of EM waves.Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 10 3. Figure shown below depicts the path loss vs distance graph for EM. Three important observations are given below. but it has no effect on MI path loss since we assume that the permeability of the medium is a constant. In addition.MI and MI waveguide communications. Thrissur . It proves that MI waveguide technique is far better than the other two methods known. Fig. certain observations can be made using known parameters for various communication methods feasible in underground communication. the path loss can be further reduced by reducing the relay distance and the wire resistance. Engineering College. COMPARATIVE STUDY Based on the channel modeling and analysis done until now.

MI technique has smaller path loss than EM wave technique. the transmission range of the waveguide system is above 250 m even in the high noise scenario. However as the transmission distance increases. It can be seen that for d<1 m . an increment by 25 times. Keeping the VWC constant and on increasing the frequency to 900 MHz we can see that the path loss of MI system decreases but that of EM wave increases. (a).3 Operating frequency First. the bit error rate characteristics of MI waveguide is investigated. Fig : 300 MHz signal with 5% VWC Govt.. Engineering College. 3. i.Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 11 3. The path loss of MI waveguide system remains the lowest when high operating frequency is used. MI waveguide technique greatly reduces the signal path loss compared to other techniques. Comparing with the small transmission range of other two techniques(less than 10 m). the MI signal attenuates much faster than EM wave.1 Bit Error Rate In Fig.e. in Fig. Thrissur . the path loss of the three techniques using 300 MHz sigal in soil with 5% VWC is shown versus the transmission distance d.

: 300 MHz signal in soil with 25% VWC Fig.Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 12 Fig. . Thrissur . 900 MHz signal in soil with 5% VWC Govt. Engineering College.

MI waveguide technique can greatly reduce the path loss and increase the transmission range. Engineering College. This is made possible by using relay coils which do not consume energy and the system hence costs less. Govt.Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 13 5. Conclusion The limitations while using EM waves can be overcome using MI waveguide technique. Advancements have been made in this field to practically implement this technique. In future underground communications for long distances can be made possible. Thrissur .

´ RF Design vol. Engineering College. ´Magnetic induction: a low-power wireless alternative. C. Apirl 2004. I. 669-686. P. ´Near-field magnetic communication. 4. title.Varun. no. 7. publication (journal. 58. conference etc) 3. 24. July 2010.Zhi Sun and Mehmet C. July 2006. pp. Akyildiz. vol. 78-80. November 2001. ³Magnetic Induction Communications for Wireless underground sensor Networks´.´ Ad Hoc Networks Journal (Elsevier).´ IEEE Antennas and Propagation Magazine. 11. R.´Signal Propagation techniques for wireless underground communication networks´ Ad Hoc Networks Journal (Elsevier)Author. Thrissur . 4. Zhi Sun. Akyildiz. ³Wireless underground sensor networks: Research challenges. pp. no. F. Stuntebeck. Bansal.Underground Wireless Communication using Magnetic Induction 14 Bibliography 1. 2. IEEE transactions on antennas and propagation. 5. Govt. F. Bunszel. I. Akyildiz and E. vol. Ian F.

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