Wireless Sensor Networks Applications: if they work in Africa, they will work anywhere

TrackTrack 2 (Auditorium 2)
DescriptionA Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) is a self-configuring network of small sensor nodes communicating among themselves using radio signals, and deployed in quantity to sense the physical world. Sensor nodes are essentially small computers with extremely basic functionality. They consist of a processing unit with limited computational power and a limited memory, one or more sensors, a radio communication device and a power sour
Wireless sensor networks in Developing Countries have a great role to play not only to expedite novel solutions that help mitigate development problems, but also to facilitate research activities in crucial scientific areas such as environmental monitoring and energy management. The solutions found when designing sensor networks for Developing Countries can be used in Nordic countries, where the climate is harsh.
Some of the issues addressed include:
? Power consumption is an important issue for the network to be self-sustainable.
Minimizing the cost of deployment is of paramount importance. Since WSN is a nascent technology, many of the existing general purposes solutions in the market are expensive and/or they are not well tailored for use in the developing world.
To be usable in large numbers in developing countries, where climates are extreme and spare parts are rare, sensor nodes must also be rugged and reliable. Enclosures are needed to protect nodes from moisture and heat, but still expose sensors to the outdoor conditions that they are monitoring. As such, the environmental conditions must be taken into account when designing the system.
We will describe some WSN applications we have been involved in, highlighting how the solutions developed can be used in other harsh environments as well. The applications have to do with Solar Energy Monitoring, Irrigation and Air Quality.
During the presentation, we will demo some of the solutions we developed.

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