Improving the Efficiency of Wireless Sensor Networks using Fountain codes

Document Type : Research Paper


Faulty of Electrical and Robotic Engineering, Shahrood University of Technology, Shahrood, Iran


Fountain codes are erasure codes that are characterized by their rateless property and their global acknowledgment. The larger the network size, the more efficient the fountain codes are degraded because of multi-hops causing an overflow. The optimization of wireless communication is also a focus of study exciting and an important issue always to maximize performance, the lifetime of the sensor nodes, and to reduce the consumption of energy. Estimation becomes one of the attractive topics in wireless sensor networks nowadays. In this paper, I consider a distributed estimation scheme composing of a sensor member and a fusion center, which is the cluster head. To minimize the number of transmissions as well as the impact of overflow, I determine the optimal minimal number of encoded packets needed for successful decoding. Sensor observations are encoded using fountain codes, and then messages are collected at the cluster head where a final estimation is provided with a classification based on Bayes rule. The main goal of this paper is to estimate the total number of received packets using the Bayes rule so that it is possible to minimize the overflow and extend the network lifetime.