Paxos Made Wireless: Consensus in the Air
Paper in proceedings, 2019
Many applications in low-power wireless networks require complex coordination between their members. Swarms of robots or sensors and actuators in industrial closed-loop control need to coordinate within short periods of time to execute tasks. Failing to agree on a common decision can cause substantial consequences, like system failures and threats to human life. Such applications require consensus algorithms to enable coordination. While consensus has been studied for wired networks decades ago, with, for example, Paxos and Raft, it remains an open problem in multi-hop low-power wireless networks due to the limited resources available and the high cost of established solutions.
This paper presents Wireless Paxos, a fault-tolerant, network-wide consensus primitive for low-power wireless networks. It is a new flavor of Paxos, the most-used consensus protocol today, and is specifically designed to tackle the challenges of low-power wireless networks. By building on top of concurrent transmissions, it provides low-latency, high reliability, and guarantees on the consensus. Our results show that Wireless Paxos requires only 289 ms to complete a consensus between 188 nodes in testbed experiments. Furthermore, we show that Wireless Paxos stays consistent even when injecting controlled failures.
Internet of Things
Wireless Sensor Networks