Distributed algorithms for barrier coverage using relocatable sensors
Paper i proceeding, 2013

We study the barrier coverage problem using relocatable sensor nodes. We assume each sensor can sense an intruder or event inside its sensing range. Sensors are initially located at arbitrary positions on the barrier and can move along the barrier. The goal is to find final positions for sensors so that the entire barrier is covered. In recent years, the problem has been studied extensively in the centralized setting. In this paper, we study the problem in the distributed setting. We assume each sensor repeatedly executes a Look-Compute-Move cycle: based on what it sees in its vicinity, it makes a decision on where to move, and moves to its next position. We make two strong but realistic restrictions on the capabilities of sensors: they have a constant visibility rang e and can move only a constant distance in every cycle. In this model, we give the first two distributed algorithms that achieve barrier coverage for a line segment barrier when there are enough nodes in the network to cover the entire barrier. Our algorithms are synchronous, and local in the sense that sensors make their decisions independently based only on what they see within their constant visibility range. One of our algorithms is oblivious whereas the other uses two bits of memory at each sensor to store the type of move made in the previous step. We show that our oblivious algorithm terminates within θ(n2) steps with the barrier fully covered, while the constant-memory algorithm is shown to take θ(n) steps to terminate in the worst case. Since any algorithm that can only move a constant distance in one step requires ω(n) steps on some inputs, our second algorithm is asymptotically optimal. Finally, both our algorithms are self-stabilizing, and can be easily extended to the case of non-homogeneous sensors, and for the case when the barrier is a circle. Copyright 2013 ACM.

Wireless mobile sensors

Barrier coverage

Autonomous mobile robots

Distributed algorithms

Optimal algorithms


Mohsen Eftekhari

Université Concordia

Evangelos Kranakis

Carleton University

Danny Kriz̧anc

Wesleyan University

Oscar Morales

Chalmers, Data- och informationsteknik, Nätverk och system

Lata Narayanan

Université Concordia

Jaroslav Opatrný

Université Concordia

Proceedings of the Annual ACM Symposium on Principles of Distributed Computing

9781450320658 (ISBN)


Data- och informationsvetenskap





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