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Traffic-Aware Dynamic Routing to Alleviate Congestion in Wireless Sensor Networks

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4 Author(s)
Fengyuan Ren ; Tsinghua University, Beijing ; Tao He ; Sajal K. Das ; Chuang Lin

The congestion problem in Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) is quite different from that in traditional networks. Most current congestion control algorithms try to alleviate the congestion by reducing the rate at which the source nodes inject packets into the network. However, this traffic control scheme always decreases the throughput so as to violate fidelity level required by the applications. In this paper, we present a solution that sufficiently exerts the idle or underloaded nodes to alleviate congestion and improve the overall throughput in WSNs. To achieve this goal, a traffic-aware dynamic routing (TADR) algorithm is proposed to route packets around the congestion areas and scatter the excessive packets along multiple paths consisting of idle and underloaded nodes. Utilizing the concept of potential in classical physics, our TADR algorithm is designed through constructing a hybrid virtual potential field using depth and normalized queue length to force the packets to steer clear of obstacles created by congestion and eventually move toward the sink. The simulation results show that the proposed solution improves the overall throughput by around 370 percent as compared to MintRoute, which is one of benchmark routing protocols. Furthermore, TADR scheme has low overhead suitable for large-scale, dense sensor networks.

Published in:

IEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems  (Volume:22 ,  Issue: 9 )