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The energy-efficiency usage is relative to each layer of wireless sensor networks. In order to improve the ZigBee mesh routing protocol for energy-efficiency usage, we propose a routing algorithm combining AODVjr with the node residual energy. To reduce the energy consumption of bottleneck nodes and extend network lifetime, the improved routing algorithm aims to build a new balancing method between the energy-aware routing metric and the shortest path. Based on the energy model of CC2430 RF transceiver, the implemented routing protocol is simulated using NS2 (Network Simulator version 2). Simulation result shows that this improved protocol can extend the network lifetime very efficiently.