Energy-Efficient Wireless Networking for Embedded

March 28, 2005
12:00 pm - 1:30 pm
Halligan 108
Speaker: Curt Schurgers, UCSD
Host: Carla Brodley


Embedded systems have gradually overtaken general-purpose computing in both economic impact and research activity. Moreover, instead of being about standalone devices, they are being equipped with wireless communication capabilities and are networked together. We have come to know these systems as sensor networks, local and personal area networks, ubiquitous computing or ambient intelligence. In these systems, a key challenge is managing the energy consumption, which is often dominated by the wireless communication and networking. As we desire ubiquitous availability of these wireless embedded networks, they should always remain reachable. However, the only way to achieve substantial improvements in energy efficiency is to turn the radio off completely, as often as possible. In this talk, these conflicting requirements are investigated, focusing on device wakeup strategies and adaptive link/MAC layer issues. It can be shown that latency can be traded off with energy consumption, and that it is also possible to compensate for elevated energy consumption in topology-critical nodes. When information does need to be communicated, this has to be done efficiently as well. By analyzing the circuit design of the radio, different link adaptation strategies are proposed. In addition, application level techniques can be employed, one of which is studied for the case of sensor networks. In this talk, the focus is on generic wireless networks of embedded systems, with specific applications to sensor networks.

Bio: Curt Schurgers is an assistant professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department at UCSD. He received his MSEE summa cum laude from the Katholieke Universiteit Leuven (Belgium) in 1997, and his Ph.D. degree from UCLA in 2002, focusing on wireless embedded networked systems. Prior to starting at UCSD, he was a postdoctoral researcher at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. From 1997 to 1999, he worked at IMEC (Leuven, Belgium) on turbo coding. His current research interests are wireless networks, sensor networks, low power embedded systems, and the interplay between networking protocols and wireless communications.