mobicom99 - Next Century Challenges: Mobile Networking for...

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Next Century Challenges: Mobile Networking for “Smart Dust” J. M. Kahn, R. H. Katz (ACM Fellow), K. S. J. Pister Department of Electrical Engineering and Computer Sciences, University of California, Berkeley {jmk, randy, pister} Abstract Large-scale networks of wireless sensors are becoming an active topic of research. Advances in hardware technology and engineering design have led to dramatic reductions in size, power consumption and cost for digital circuitry, wire- less communications and Micro ElectroMechanical Systems (MEMS). This has enabled very compact, autonomous and mobile nodes, each containing one or more sensors, compu- tation and communication capabilities, and a power supply. The missing ingredient is the networking and applications layers needed to harness this revolutionary capability into a complete system. We review the key elements of the emer- gent technology of “Smart Dust” and outline the research challenges they present to the mobile networking and sys- tems community, which must provide coherent connectivity to large numbers of mobile network nodes co-located within a small volume. 1I n t r o d u c t i o n As the research community searches for the processing plat- form beyond the personal computer, networks of wireless sensors have become quite interesting as a new environment in which to seek research challenges. These have been enabled by the rapid convergence of three key technologies: digital circuitry, wireless communications, and Micro Elec- troMechanical Systems (MEMS). In each area, advances in hardware technology and engineering design have led to reductions in size, power consumption, and cost. This has enabled remarkably compact, autonomous nodes, each con- taining one or more sensors, computation and communica- tion capabilities, and a power supply. Berkeley’s Smart Dust project, led by Professors Pister and Kahn, explores the limits on size and power consumption in autonomous sensor nodes. Size reduction is paramount, to make the nodes as inexpensive and easy-to-deploy as possi- ble. The research team is confident that they can incorporate the requisite sensing, communication, and computing hard- ware, along with a power supply, in a volume no more than a few cubic millimeters, while still achieving impressive performance in terms of sensor functionality and communi- cations capability. These millimeter-scale nodes are called “Smart Dust.” It is certainly within the realm of possibility that future prototypes of Smart Dust could be small enough to remain suspended in air, buoyed by air currents, sensing and communicating for hours or days on end. At least one popular science fiction book has articulated just such a vision [12]. In this paper, we are concerned with the networking and applications challenges presented by this radical new tech- nology. These kinds of networking nodes must consume extremely low power, communicate at bit rates measured in kilobits per second, and potentially need to operate in high volumetric densities. These requirements dictate the need
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This note was uploaded on 12/08/2011 for the course CS 525 taught by Professor Gupta during the Spring '08 term at University of Illinois, Urbana Champaign.

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mobicom99 - Next Century Challenges: Mobile Networking for...

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