Coverage breach problems in bandwidth-constrained sensor networks

Maggie X. Cheng, Lu Ruan, Weili Wu

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

28 Scopus citations


Recent research in sensor networks highlights the low-power mode operation of sensor networks. In wireless sensor networks, network lifetime can be extended by organizing sensors into mutually exclusive subsets and alternatively activating each subset. Coverage breach occurs when a subset fails to cover all the targets. In bandwidth-constrained sensor networks, coverage breach is more likely to happen because when active sensors periodically send data to the base station, contention for channel access must be considered. Channel bandwidth imposes a limit on the cardinality of each subset. To make efficient use of both energy and bandwidth with minimum coverage breach requires optimal arrangement of sensor nodes. This article addresses three coverage breach problems related to the low-power operation of wireless sensor networks where channel bandwidth is limited. The three coverage breach problems are formulated using integer linear programming models. A greedy approximation algorithm and a heuristic based on the LP-relaxation method are proposed. Effects of changing different network resources on sensor network coverage are studied through simulations. One consistent result is that when the number of sensors increases, network lifetime can be improved without loss of network coverage only if there is no bandwidth constraint; with bandwidth constraints, network lifetime may be improved further at the cost of coverage breach.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number1240232
JournalACM Transactions on Sensor Networks
Issue number2
StatePublished - Jun 1 2007
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Computer Networks and Communications


  • Coverage
  • Coverage breach
  • Energy efficiency
  • Network lifetime
  • Scheduling
  • Sensor networks


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