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Feng Chen, Xiaoyu Tong, Edith Ngai and Falko Dressler, "Mode Switch - Adaptive Use of Delay-Sensitive Or Energy-Aware Communication in IEEE 802.15.4-Based Networks," Proceedings of 7th IEEE International Conference on Mobile Ad-hoc and Sensor Systems (MASS 2010), San Francisco, CA, November 2010, pp. 302–311.


We propose 'mode switch', an adaptive load-sensitive solution that supports both an energy-efficient operation mode for transmitting normal sensor data and an QoS-aware low-latency mode for high priority emergency messages. Typically, sensor networks are considered to operate efficiently w.r.t. energy consumption. A good example is the IEEE 802.15.4 protocol, which has mainly been designed for this purpose. The standard IEEE 802.15.4 beacon-enabled cluster-tree topology supports energy-efficient operation for low-rate data transmissions. However, in the case of detected alarms, high-priority emergency messages need to be transmitted with low-latency and guaranteed delivery. In this case, the cluster-tree topology appears to be inefficient and cannot provide the needed support. In this paper, we show how energy-efficiency and delay-sensitivity can be combined by developing an adaptive solution that completely switches between the fundamentally different operation modes beacon-enabled cluster-tree mode and non-beacon-enabled mesh mode. The key challenge is to provide a fast mode switch that also keeps track of necessary topology information. We present a protocol for this mode switch and demonstrate, based on extensive simulations, that the performance demands can be fulfilled with only reasonable overhead even for mid-size networks. Our simulation results clearly indicate that the system achieves the objected QoS and energy-efficiency with 'mode switch' in real-time.

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Feng Chen
Xiaoyu Tong
Edith Ngai
Falko Dressler

BibTeX reference

    author = {Chen, Feng and Tong, Xiaoyu and Ngai, Edith and Dressler, Falko},
    doi = {10.1109/MASS.2010.5664013},
    title = {{Mode Switch - Adaptive Use of Delay-Sensitive Or Energy-Aware Communication in IEEE 802.15.4-Based Networks}},
    pages = {302--311},
    publisher = {IEEE},
    address = {San Francisco, CA},
    booktitle = {7th IEEE International Conference on Mobile Ad-hoc and Sensor Systems (MASS 2010)},
    month = {11},
    year = {2010},

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