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The authors consider the problem of optimizing the area coverage of a wireless sensor network under energy consumption constraints. Following existing approaches, they use a mixed integer linear program formulation. They then show how to use partitioning techniques, developed in the context of VLSI place and route, to decompose the problem into separate sub-problems, overcoming the exponential complexity typical of integer linear programming, while minimizing the loss in optimality. In addition, they are able to evaluate the achieved degree of optimality by computing relatively tight bounds with respect to the optimal solution.
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