Energy-efficient surveillance system using wireless sensor networks Conference Paper uri icon


  • The focus of surveillance missions is to acquire and verify information about enemy capabilities and positions of hostile targets. Such missions often involve a high element of risk for human personnel and require a high degree of stealthiness. Hence, the ability to deploy unmanned surveillance missions, by using wireless sensor networks, is of great practical importance for the military. Because of the energy constraints of sensor devices, such systems necessitate an energy-aware design to ensure the longevity of surveillance missions. Solutions proposed recently for this type of system show promising results through simulations. However, the simplified assumptions they make about the system in the simulator often do not hold well in practice and energy consumption is narrowly accounted for within a single protocol. In this paper, we describe the design and implementation of a running system for energy-efficient surveillance. The system allows a group of cooperating sensor devices to detect and track the positions of moving vehicles in an energy-efficient and stealthy manner. We can trade off energy-awareness and surveillance performance by adaptively adjusting the sensitivity of the system. We evaluate the performance on a network of 70 MICA2 motes equipped with dual-axis magnetometers. Our results show that our surveillance strategy is adaptable and achieves a significant extension of network lifetime. Finally, we share lessons learned in building such a complete running system.

name of conference

  • Proceedings of the 2nd international conference on Mobile systems, applications, and services

published proceedings

  • Proceedings of the 2nd international conference on Mobile systems, applications, and services

author list (cited authors)

  • He, T., Krishnamurthy, S., Stankovic, J. A., Abdelzaher, T., Luo, L., Stoleru, R., ... Krogh, B.

citation count

  • 502

complete list of authors

  • He, Tian||Krishnamurthy, Sudha||Stankovic, John A||Abdelzaher, Tarek||Luo, Liqian||Stoleru, Radu||Yan, Ting||Gu, Lin||Hui, Jonathan||Krogh, Bruce

editor list (cited editors)

  • Banavar, G. S., Zwaenepoel, W., Terry, D., & Want, R.

publication date

  • January 2004