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Sensors 2016, 16(3), 385; doi:10.3390/s16030385

An Energy-Efficient MAC Protocol for Medical Emergency Monitoring Body Sensor Networks

College of Information Science and Engineering, Shandong University of Science and Technology, Qingdao 266590, China
Shandong Provincial Key Laboratory of Computer Networks, Shandong Computer Science Center (National Supercomputer Center in Jinan), Jinan 250101, China
Author to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Academic Editor: Athanasios V. Vasilakos
Received: 28 December 2015 / Revised: 21 February 2016 / Accepted: 10 March 2016 / Published: 17 March 2016
(This article belongs to the Section Sensor Networks)
View Full-Text   |   Download PDF [810 KB, uploaded 17 March 2016]   |  


Medical emergency monitoring body sensor networks (BSNs) monitor the occurrence of medical emergencies and are helpful for the daily care of the elderly and chronically ill people. Such BSNs are characterized by rare traffic when there is no emergency occurring, high real-time and reliable requirements of emergency data and demand for a fast wake-up mechanism for waking up all nodes when an emergency happens. A beacon-enabled MAC protocol is specially designed to meet the demands of medical emergency monitoring BSNs. The rarity of traffic is exploited to improve energy efficiency. By adopting a long superframe structure to avoid unnecessary beacons and allocating most of the superframe to be inactive periods, the duty cycle is reduced to an extremely low level to save energy. Short active time slots are interposed into the superframe and shared by all of the nodes to deliver the emergency data in a low-delay and reliable way to meet the real-time and reliable requirements. The interposition slots can also be used by the coordinator to broadcast network demands to wake-up all nodes in a low-delay and energy-efficient way. Experiments display that the proposed MAC protocol works well in BSNs with low emergency data traffic. View Full-Text
Keywords: body sensor networks (BSNs); energy efficient; medical emergency monitoring; MAC protocol body sensor networks (BSNs); energy efficient; medical emergency monitoring; MAC protocol

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This is an open access article distributed under the Creative Commons Attribution License which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited. (CC BY 4.0).

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Zhang, C.; Wang, Y.; Liang, Y.; Shu, M.; Chen, C. An Energy-Efficient MAC Protocol for Medical Emergency Monitoring Body Sensor Networks. Sensors 2016, 16, 385.

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