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Proceedings Paper

Free space optical sensor network for fixed infrastructure sensing
Author(s): Navik Agrawal; Stuart D. Milner; Christopher C. Davis
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Paper Abstract

Free space optical (FSO) links for indoor sensor networks can provide data rates that can range from bits/s to hundreds of Mb/s. In addition, they offer physical security, and in contrast with omnidirectional RF networks, they avoid interference with other electronic systems. These features are advantageous for communication over short distances in fixed infrastructure sensor networks. In this paper the system architecture for a fixed infrastructure FSO sensor network is presented. The system includes a network of small, low power (mW), sensor systems, or "motes," that transmit data optically to a central "cluster head," which controls the network traffic of all the motes and can aggregate the sensor information. The cluster head is designed with multiple vertical cavity surface emitting lasers oriented in different directions and controlled to diverge at 12º in order to provide signal coverage over a wide field of view. Both the cluster head and motes form a local area network. Our system design focuses on low-power wireless motes that can maintain successful communication over distances up to a few meters without having to use stringent optical alignment techniques, and our network design focuses on controlling mote sleep cycles for energy efficiency. This paper presents the design as well as the experimental link and optical communications performance of a prototype FSO-based sensor network.

Paper Details

Date Published: 21 August 2009
PDF: 11 pages
Proc. SPIE 7464, Free-Space Laser Communications IX, 74640F (21 August 2009); doi: 10.1117/12.828124
Show Author Affiliations
Navik Agrawal, Univ. of Maryland, College Park (United States)
Stuart D. Milner, Univ. of Maryland, College Park (United States)
Christopher C. Davis, Univ. of Maryland, College Park (United States)


Published in SPIE Proceedings Vol. 7464:
Free-Space Laser Communications IX
Arun K. Majumdar; Christopher C. Davis, Editor(s)

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