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This paper considers a heterogeneous wireless sensor network consisting of a large number of energy constrained wireless sensor nodes and a connected subnetwork of resource-rich supernodes used for relaying sensor data to the user. We address the range assignment problem in this heterogeneous sensor network - selecting the transmission range for each sensor node such that a multihop communication path exists between each sensor node and a supernode. In order to balance power usage in the sensor network, the objective of this range assignment problem is to minimize the maximum transmission power consumed at each sensor nodes. We propose several solutions: an Integer Programming approach, a distributed greedy protocol, and a minimum spanning tree protocol based on clustering. We validate and evaluate the proposed solutions with simulations.
Date of Conference: 29-31 July 2006