You are on page 1of 42

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks?

Loren Schwiebert Wayne State University Department of Computer Science
loren@wayne.edu http://www.cs.wayne.edu/~loren

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks?

2

Why Wireless Sensors Now?
 Moore’s Law is making sufficient CPU performance

available with low power requirements in a small size.  Research in Materials Science has resulted in novel sensing materials for many Chemical, Biological, and Physical sensing tasks.  Transceivers for wireless devices are becoming smaller, less expensive, and less power hungry.  Power source improvements in batteries, as well as passive power sources such as solar or vibration energy, are expanding application options.

Current State of the Art in Wireless Sensors

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks?

4

Typical Sensor Node Features
 A sensor node has: – Sensing Material
• Physical – Magnetic, Light, Sound • Chemical – CO, Chemical Weapons • Biological – Bacteria, Viruses, Proteins

– Integrated Circuitry (VLSI)
• A-to-D converter from sensor to circuitry

– Packaging for environmental safety – Power Supply
• Passive – Solar, Vibration • Active – Battery power, RF Inductance

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 5 Advances in Wireless Sensor Nodes Consider Multiple Generations of Berkeley Motes Model Date CPU Flash Memory RAM Radio Rene 1999 4 MHz 8 KB 512 B Mica 2002 4 MHz Mica-2 2003 4 MHz Mica-Z 2004 4 MHz 128 KB 4 KB 128 KB 128 KB 4 KB 4 KB 10 Kbps 40 Kbps 76 Kbps 250 Kbps .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 6 Historical Comparison Consider a 40 Year Old Computer Model Date CPU Flash Memory RAM Honeywell H-300 6/1964 2 MHz None 32 KB Mica 2 7/2003 4 MHz 128 KB 4 KB .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 7 A Rosy Future for Wireless Sensors?  Is the effort on wireless sensor protocols a waste of time??  Can we just wait 10-15 years until we have sensors that are very powerful??  NO!! Will still face: – Very limited storage – Modest power supplies .

Proposed Applications of Wireless Sensors .

 Better lighting and heating in office buildings.  The Pentagon building has used sensors extensively.What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 9 Smart Home / Smart Office  Sensors controlling appliances and electrical devices in the house. .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 10 Biomedical / Medical  Health Monitors – Glucose – Heart rate – Cancer detection  Chronic Diseases – Artificial retina – Cochlear implants  Hospital Sensors – Monitor vital signs – Record anomalies .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 11 Military Remote deployment of sensors for tactical monitoring of enemy troop movements. .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 12 Industrial & Commercial  Numerous industrial and commercial applications: – Agricultural Crop Conditions – Inventory Tracking – In-Process Parts Tracking – Automated Problem Reporting – RFID – Theft Deterrent and Customer Tracing – Plant Equipment Maintenance Monitoring .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 13 Traffic Management & Monitoring  Future cars could use wireless sensors to: – Handle Accidents – Handle Thefts Sensors embedded in the roads to: –Monitor traffic flows –Provide real-time route updates .

Driving Forces for Adopting New Technology .

– Wireless sensors will replace wired sensors • No wiring – lower costs • More flexible deployments – Wireless sensors will provide new services • Provide cost advantages or lower overhead • Improve product quality or product features .What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 15 Economic Factors  New technologies replace existing technologies or fill new niches when there are economic advantages.

Maybe wireless sensors for dating or meeting new people? Personal wireless sensors for fun – a temperature monitor you carry around? . Examples include: Java rings and internet watches.What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 16 Novelty Some early adopters use new technology simply for novelty or the fun of it.

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 17 Legal / Liability  New technologies are adopted because of government mandates: – Air bags in automobiles – Child safety seats  Companies employ new technologies to avoid being sued!! – Temperature sensors to detect coffee that is too hot?? .

– Games of tag using wireless sensors? – Interactive role-playing games with sensors? . – 3D visualization for … games. – Games on cellular phones. – Playing games is major use of home PCs. – So is Internet browsing.What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 18 Entertainment  New technology is adopted for entertainment.

 Unusual that there are no alternative technologies that can be used. – Lack of standardization. – Consumer preference – VHS vs. . – Weaker marketing or capitalization. – Limited applications. Betamax. – Delay in getting to market.What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 19 Not Technical Superiority  Useful technologies may not dominate the marketplace for several reasons.

Uses of New Technology .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 21 Unexpected Killer Applications  Useful applications often follow available technology. For example. – PCs were available and people looked for a killer app – Visicalc. – The Internet was not created with these current applications in mind: • World Wide Web • E-Commerce • Peer-to-Peer Digital Music Sharing .

creativity leads to new applications: – Sims Internet world – E-Bay auctions – Mirror for the Palm Pilot – Digital cameras with PC interface  What surprising applications for wireless sensor networks? – Depends on sensor technology/form factor .What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 22 Unanticipated Uses Arise  Once technology is available.

Some Technical Challenges .

Protocols need to recognize this. GPS Sensor Accurate within 2.What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 24 Noisy Sensors Sensor readings can be inaccurate.8 meters Relative Humidity Sensor Accuracy of ±5% ±8% at 90% Relative Humidity ±2% with calibration .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 25 Wireless Channel Conditions  Limitations of wireless channels – Noisy – Interference – Link Contention – Unidirectional Links  But inherently a broadcast medium .

hail.What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 26 Environmental Factors  Wireless sensors need to operate in conditions that are not encountered by typical computing devices: – Rain. snow. sleet. etc. – Wide temperature variations • May require separating sensor from electronics – High humidity – Saline or other corrosive substances – High wind speeds .

What will Wireless Sensor Networks Look Like in the Near Future? .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 28 Large-Scale Deployments  Sensor networks will grow in size because of: – Lower cost – Better protocols – Advantages of dense networks Sensing Zone with sensor-coordinator. sensing-collaborators. and backbone nod .

but not the future!! – Combining sensors with different functions – Hierarchy of sensors – a few expensive powerful sensors with more cheap sensors • Useful for special communication nodes – A few sensor nodes with expensive sensors.What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 29 Heterogeneous Sensors  Homogeneous network of sensors has been the typical assumption. such as GPS-equipped sensors .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 30 Mobile Sensors Sensors with Micromachines Low-Power Motors that Support Mobility .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 31 General Purpose Sensors  Single-purpose network is the typical assumption. but not the future!! – Sensors for evolving applications – Sensors that can adapt to changing objectives – More memory and CPU will allow more complex applications – Flexibility increases marketability .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 32 Overlapping Coverage Areas  Sensors will be deployed for specific applications. but – These deployments will overlap physically – Sensors will have different properties – Users will want to combine these different sensors for new applications: • Temperature sensors for HVAC control • Location tracking of employees • Combine these for fire rescue operations .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 33 Mixture of Wired and Wireless  Wireless sensors will become a seamless part of larger networks! – Combining wired sensors with wireless sensors • Wired sensors can have more power • Wired sensors can run TCP/IP – Accessing wireless sensors through the Internet • Need a gateway to translate requests • Uploading/downloading information remotely • Modifying wireless sensor tasks remotely – Increased direct user interaction .

Some Impediments to Creating Future Applications .

11 wireless devices  Need a service discovery protocol – Enables standard interface among sensors above the physical layer . SLP. for 802.What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 35 Need a Standardized Interface  Automated interaction between sensors implies some standard mechanism for communication! – Requires compatible wireless technology – Standardization a common theme • TCP/IP for the Internet • Java for Internet programming • Jini. etc.

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 36 Service Discovery Protocol Anyone need a printer? .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 37 Service Discovery Protocol (cont.)  For a wireless sensor network. service discovery provides: – Automated calibration of new devices – Highly dynamic system configurations – Cooperation among resource poor devices – Resource sharing device solutions • Storage and long-range networking services can be obtained from a nearby server – Less duplication of functionality  Supports novel interactions in the future .

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 38 Security Issues  Concerns about misuse and privacy – Privacy issues may slow consumer adoption of technology • User tracking – RFID concerns • Has not proved true on the Internet! – Authentication and privacy are not always complementary objectives – Do not want your medical sensor hacked!! – Data tampering and computer viruses could be a nightmare! .

but wireless sensors could also increase liability: – Use in critical applications could be limited • Imagine a medical sensor fails!! • Or an automotive theft deterrent system failure – Companies will be slow to adopt technology that increases their legal exposure • May delay adoption .What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 39 Liability and Safety Concerns  Companies may adopt wireless sensors to reduce liability.

. The request fails.What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 40 Software Engineering  Imagine a heterogeneous wireless sensor network with complex tasks and high levels of interaction… – End-user level products – easy to use – Software design?? – Debugging?? – Remote software updates??  Example: Send a request over the Internet to turn on lights when your car reaches home.

What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 41 Summary and Conclusions  Wireless sensor networks have a bright future – Many applications have been proposed – Potential to revolutionize human-computer interactions – Availability of sensors will lead to new and exciting applications  A lot of research remains to be done – Wireless sensors will not evolve into traditional computers – Many obstacles to overcome – Allow realism to guide research efforts .

Richard III – Manish Kochhal Technical Assistance: Joel Schwiebert .What does the Future hold for Wireless Sensor Networks? 42 Acknowledgments THANK YOU Research collaborators (and for slides): – Professor Gregory Auner – Professor Sandeep K. S. Gupta – Professor Golden G.