Time Synchronization in Wireless Sensor Networks: A Survey

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Executive Summary

Time synchronization is a critical piece of infrastructure for any distributed system. Wireless sensor networks have emerged as an important and promising research area in the recent years. Time synchronization is important for many sensor network applications that require very precise mapping of gathered sensor data with the time of the events, for example, in tracking and vehicular surveillance. It also plays an important role in energy conservation in MAC layer protocols. The paper studies different existing methods, protocols, significant time parameters (clock drift, clock speed, synchronization errors, and topologies) to achieve accurate synchronization in a sensor network.

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