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Wireless sensor networks consist of small battery powered devices with limited energy resources. Once deployed, the small sensor nodes are usually inaccessible to the user, and thus replacement of the energy source is not feasible. Hence, energy efficiency is a key design issue that needs to be enhanced in order to improve the life span of the network. Several network layer protocols have been proposed to improve the effective lifetime of a network with a limited energy supply. In this article we propose a centralized routing protocol called base-station controlled dynamic clustering protocol (BCDCP), which distributes the energy dissipation evenly among all sensor nodes to improve network lifetime and average energy savings. The performance of BCDCP is then compared to clustering-based schemes such as low-energy adaptive clustering hierarchy (LEACH), LEACH-centralized (LEACH-C), and power-efficient gathering in sensor information systems (PEGASIS). Simulation results show that BCDCP reduces overall energy consumption and improves network lifetime over its comparatives.