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Sensors 2017, 17(7), 1660; https://doi.org/10.3390/s17071660

A Q-Learning-Based Delay-Aware Routing Algorithm to Extend the Lifetime of Underwater Sensor Networks

1
School of Electrical and Information Engineering, Tianjin University, Tianjin 300072, China
2
School of Marine Science and Technology, Tianjin University, Tianjin 300072, China
*
Authors to whom correspondence should be addressed.
Received: 7 June 2017 / Revised: 12 July 2017 / Accepted: 14 July 2017 / Published: 19 July 2017
(This article belongs to the Section Sensor Networks)
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Abstract

Underwater sensor networks (UWSNs) have become a hot research topic because of their various aquatic applications. As the underwater sensor nodes are powered by built-in batteries which are difficult to replace, extending the network lifetime is a most urgent need. Due to the low and variable transmission speed of sound, the design of reliable routing algorithms for UWSNs is challenging. In this paper, we propose a Q-learning based delay-aware routing (QDAR) algorithm to extend the lifetime of underwater sensor networks. In QDAR, a data collection phase is designed to adapt to the dynamic environment. With the application of the Q-learning technique, QDAR can determine a global optimal next hop rather than a greedy one. We define an action-utility function in which residual energy and propagation delay are both considered for adequate routing decisions. Thus, the QDAR algorithm can extend the network lifetime by uniformly distributing the residual energy and provide lower end-to-end delay. The simulation results show that our protocol can yield nearly the same network lifetime, and can reduce the end-to-end delay by 20–25% compared with a classic lifetime-extended routing protocol (QELAR). View Full-Text
Keywords: underwater sensor networks; routing protocol; lifetime-extended; delay-aware; Q-learning technique underwater sensor networks; routing protocol; lifetime-extended; delay-aware; Q-learning technique
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Jin, Z.; Ma, Y.; Su, Y.; Li, S.; Fu, X. A Q-Learning-Based Delay-Aware Routing Algorithm to Extend the Lifetime of Underwater Sensor Networks. Sensors 2017, 17, 1660.

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