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Wireless sensor networks (WSNs) have been applied to many applications since emerging. Among them, one of the most important applications is Sensor Data Collections, where sensed data are collected at all or some of the sensor nodes and forwarded to a central base station for further processing. In this paper, we present a survey on recent advances in this research area. We first highlight the special features of sensor data collection in WSNs, by comparing with both wired sensor data collection network and other WSN applications. With these features in mind, we then discuss the issues and prior solutions on the utilizations of WSNs for sensor data collection. Based on different focuses of previous research works, we describe the basic taxonomy and propose to break down the networked wireless sensor data collection into three major stages, namely, the deployment stage, the control message dissemination stage and the data delivery stage. In each stage, we then discuss the issues and challenges, followed by a review and comparison of the previously proposed approaches and solutions, striving to identify the research and development trend behind them. In addition, we further discuss the correlations among the three stages and outline possible directions for the future research of the networked wireless sensor data collection.
Date of Publication: Fourth Quarter 2011