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Feasibility and Benefits of Passive RFID Wake-up Radios for Wireless Sensor Networks

By He Ba, Ilker Demirkol and Wendi Heinzelman


Abstract—Energy efficiency is one of the crucial design criteria for wireless sensor networks. Idle listening constitutes a major part of energy waste, and thus solutions such as duty cycling and the use of wake-up radios have been proposed to reduce idle listening and save energy. Compared to duty cycling, wake-up radios save more energy by reducing unnecessary wake-ups and collisions. In this paper, we investigate the feasibility and potential benefits of using passive RFID as a wake-up radio. We first introduce a physical implementation of sensor nodes with passive RFID wake-up radios and measure their energy cost and wake-up probability. Then, we compare the performance of our RFID wake-up sensor nodes with duty cycling in a Data MULE scenario through simulations with realistic application parameters. The results show that using a passive RFID wake-up radio offers significant energy efficiency benefits at the expense of delay and the additional low-cost RFID hardware, making RFID wake-up radios beneficial for many delaytolerant sensor network applications. Keywords-Wireless sensor networks; wake-up receivers; passive RFID wake-up; data MULE I

Year: 2011
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