On the Energy Efficiency of Cooperative Communications in Wireless Sensor Networks

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Executive Summary

Cooperative communications represent a potential candidate to combat the effects of channel fading and to increase the transmit energy efficiency in wireless sensor networks with the downside being the increased complexity. In sensor networks the power consumed in the receiving and processing circuitry can constitute a significant portion of the total consumed power. By taking into consideration such overhead, an analytical framework for studying the energy efficiency trade-off of cooperation in sensor networks is presented. This trade-off is shown to depend on several parameters such as the receive and processing power, the required quality-of-service, the power amplifier loss, and several other factors.

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