A Self-Configurable Grouping Method for Integrated Wi-SUN FAN and TSCH-based Networks

by   Xinyu Ni, et al.

Recent applications in large-scale wireless mesh networks (WSN), e.g., Advanced Metering Infrastructure (AMI) scenarios, expect to support an extended number of nodes with higher throughput, which cannot be sufficiently supported by the current WSN protocols. Two prior protocols, Wi-SUN Field Area Network (Wi-SUN FAN) and IETF 6TiSCH standards, are popularly used that are respectively based on asynchronous Carrier Sense Multiple Access / Collision Avoidance (CSMA/CA) and IEEE 802.15.4 Time Scheduled Channel Hopping (TSCH). However, the former one with CSMA/CA can be prone to the Hidden Node Problem (HNP) that leads to a degradation of reliability, while the latter one with TSCH avoids HNP by using synchronously scheduling but requires massive control signalling that degrades the upper-bound of throughput. Accordingly, this paper tackles the challenge of how to improve the upper-bound of throughput without loss of reliability. To do so, we first present an in-depth evaluation of reliability and throughput between the two existing standards via system-level simulation. We then propose a self-configurable grouping (SCG) method to cluster nodes without using location information of each node. This SCG method eliminates around 99% HNP in CSMA/CA, thus greatly improves its reliability with maintaining the relatively high upper-bound of throughput. Our results show that the SCG method almost doubles the network throughput compared with both 6TiSCH and Wi-SUN FAN in heavy traffic scenarios, while providing extremely high reliability of more than 99.999%.


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