Does Multi-hop Communication Enhance Localization Accuracy?

A new work, co-authored with Walid Ibrahim and Hosssam Hassanein, has been accepted in Globecom’13 taking place in Atlanta during December 9-13, 2013.

Abstract –  Estimating the location of sensor nodes in wireless sensor networks is a fundamental problem, as sensor node locations play a critical role in a variety of applications. In many cases the area covered is very large so that it is impossible to localize all sensor nodes using single-hop localization techniques. A solution to this problem is to use a multi-hop localization technique to estimate sensor node positions. Multi-hop localization techniques are classified into two categories: range-based and range-free. Despite the numerous existing localization techniques, the fundamental behavior of multi-hop localization is yet to be fully examined. The aim of this paper is to study the effect of errors in a multi-hop localization environment and how it impacts localization accuracy. There has been a general belief that a fewer number of hops results in higher accuracy. Through different experiments on two generic localization techniques representing both categories of localization schemes, we show that this belief is not true in all cases, as in dense environments using shorter hops gives better accuracy.