High-Precision Low-Power Wireless Nodes' Synchronization via Decentralized Control
2016 (English)In: IEEE Transactions on Control Systems Technology, ISSN 1063-6536, E-ISSN 1558-0865, Vol. 24, no 4, 1279-1293 p.Article in journal (Refereed) Published
Abstract: Time synchronization is crucial for wireless sensor networks (WSNs), where operations often rely on time ordering of events. WSNs are deployed in different scenarios, and therefore their timing requirements are often related to the peculiar characteristics of the specific environment they have to act in. Synchronization is anyway always an issue: transactional applications need monotonicity of the nodes' clocks to avoid time reversal, ultralow power applications call for minimal overhead to allow for low-duty-cycle operation, applications facing extreme environments have to maintain the needed precision in the presence of unforeseen thermal drift, and so on. Specially, control applications on battery-powered devices, where timing is an issue and low-power operation is highly desired, benefit from synchronization. However, to date, the problem of synchronization has been differently faced depending on the application domain. This paper proposes a general solution to the problem of synchronization in WSNs, which seamlessly integrates with the radio stack. In addition, it guarantees monotonic and continuous node clocks with low overhead for the infrastructure. The solution is based on a decentralized control scheme that is stable and robust to thermal stress, without the need for temperature measurements. The control scheme is simulated and implemented on real WSN nodes. The efficiency of the scheme is evaluated with simulations and experiments, providing insights on the maximum synchronization error between nodes, on the communication overhead, and on the limited nodes' power consumption. The solution is also compared with state-of-the-art alternatives.
Place, publisher, year, edition, pages
United States: IEEE , 2016. Vol. 24, no 4, 1279-1293 p.
Synchronization, Wireless sensor networks, Clocks, Jitter, Crystals, Decentralized control
Engineering and Technology
IdentifiersURN: urn:nbn:se:mdh:diva-33789DOI: 10.1109/TCST.2015.2483559OAI: oai:DiVA.org:mdh-33789DiVA: diva2:1048550