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TreeMAC: Localized TDMA MAC protocol for real-time high-data-rate sensor networks

January 1, 2009

Earlier sensor network MAC protocols focus on energy conservation in low-duty cycle applications, while some recent applications involve real-time high-data-rate signals. This motivates us to design an innovative localized TDMA MAC protocol to achieve high throughput and low congestion in data collection sensor networks, besides energy conservation. TreeMAC divides a time cycle into frames and each frame into slots. A parent node determines the children's frame assignment based on their relative bandwidth demand, and each node calculates its own slot assignment based on its hop-count to the sink. This innovative 2-dimensional frame-slot assignment algorithm has the following nice theory properties. First, given any node, at any time slot, there is at most one active sender in its neighborhood (including itself). Second, the packet scheduling with TreeMAC is bufferless, which therefore minimizes the probability of network congestion. Third, the data throughput to the gateway is at least 1/3 of the optimum assuming reliable links. Our experiments on a 24-node testbed show that TreeMAC protocol significantly improves network throughput, fairness, and energy efficiency compared to TinyOS's default CSMA MAC protocol and a recent TDMA MAC protocol Funneling-MAC. Partial results of this paper were published in Song, Huang, Shirazi and Lahusen [W.-Z. Song, R. Huang, B. Shirazi, and R. Lahusen, TreeMAC: Localized TDMA MAC protocol for high-throughput and fairness in sensor networks, in: The 7th Annual IEEE International Conference on Pervasive Computing and Communications, PerCom, March 2009]. Our new contributions include analyses of the performance of TreeMAC from various aspects. We also present more implementation detail and evaluate TreeMAC from other aspects. ?? 2009 Elsevier B.V.