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UnderWater acoustic Sensor Networks (UWSN) is a relatively new research area, and remains quite challenging due to limited bandwidth, low data rate, severe multipath, and high variability in the channel conditions. These complicated and non-linear channel characteristics render incorrect most simplifying assumptions used in simulations. The authors believe that, while researchers have proposed several novel protocols, their use of models and simulations as the only form of validation and intra-protocol comparison remains removed from reality. They argue that research experimentation is hindered by two fundamental constraints: high cost of underwater networking experiments, and lack of a single, easily-replicable platform for evaluation.
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