Sensors2015, 15(5), 9741-9755; doi:10.3390/s150509741 - published 24 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: A number of research works has studied packet scheduling policies in energy scavenging wireless sensor networks, based on the predicted amount of harvested energy. Most of them aim to achieve energy neutrality, which means that an embedded system can operate perpetually while meeting application requirements. Unlike other renewable energy sources, solar energy has the feature of distinct periodicity in the amount of harvested energy over a day. Using this feature, this paper proposes a packet transmission control policy that can enhance the network performance while keeping sensor nodes alive. Furthermore, this paper suggests a novel solar energy prediction method that exploits the relation between cloudiness and solar radiation. The experimental results and analyses show that the proposed packet transmission policy outperforms others in terms of the deadline miss rate and data throughput. Furthermore, the proposed solar energy prediction method can predict more accurately than others by 6.92%.
Sensors2015, 15(5), 9703-9740; doi:10.3390/s150509703 - published 24 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Wireless communication is a trend nowadays for the industrial environment. A number of different technologies have emerged as solutions satisfying strict industrial requirements (e.g., WirelessHART, ISA100.11a, WIA-PA). As the industrial environment presents a vast range of applications, adopting an adequate solution for each case is vital to obtain good performance of the system. In this context, the routing and scheduling schemes associated with these technologies have a direct impact on important features, like latency and energy consumption. This situation has led to the development of a vast number of routing and scheduling schemes. In the present paper, we focus on the WirelessHART technology, emphasizing its most important routing and scheduling aspects in order to guide both end users and the developers of new algorithms. Furthermore, we provide a detailed literature review of the newest routing and scheduling techniques forWirelessHART, discussing each of their features. These routing algorithms have been evaluated in terms of their objectives, metrics, the usage of theWirelessHART structures and validation method. In addition, the scheduling algorithms were also evaluated by metrics, validation, objectives and, in addition, by multiple superframe support, as well as by the redundancy method used. Moreover, this paper briefly presents some insights into the main WirelessHART simulation modules available, in order to provide viable test platforms for the routing and scheduling algorithms. Finally, some open issues in WirelessHART routing and scheduling algorithms are discussed.
Sensors2015, 15(5), 9681-9702; doi:10.3390/s150509681 - published 24 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Skid-steering mobile robots are widely used because of their simple mechanism and robustness. However, due to the complex wheel-ground interactions and the kinematic constraints, it is a challenge to understand the kinematics and dynamics of such a robotic platform. In this paper, we develop an analysis and experimental kinematic scheme for a skid-steering wheeled vehicle based-on a laser scanner sensor. The kinematics model is established based on the boundedness of the instantaneous centers of rotation (ICR) of treads on the 2D motion plane. The kinematic parameters (the ICR coefficient , the path curvature variable and robot speed ), including the effect of vehicle dynamics, are introduced to describe the kinematics model. Then, an exact but costly dynamic model is used and the simulation of this model’s stationary response for the vehicle shows a qualitative relationship for the specified parameters and . Moreover, the parameters of the kinematic model are determined based-on a laser scanner localization experimental analysis method with a skid-steering robotic platform, Pioneer P3-AT. The relationship between the ICR coefficient and two physical factors is studied, i.e., the radius of the path curvature and the robot speed . An empirical function-based relationship between the ICR coefficient of the robot and the path parameters is derived. To validate the obtained results, it is empirically demonstrated that the proposed kinematics model significantly improves the dead-reckoning performance of this skid–steering robot.
Sensors2015, 15(5), 9666-9680; doi:10.3390/s150509666 - published 24 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Optical fiber sensors, thanks to their compactness, fast response and real-time measurements, have a large impact in the fields of life science research, drug discovery and medical diagnostics. In recent years, advances in nanotechnology have resulted in the development of nanotools, capable of entering the single cell, resulting in new nanobiosensors useful for the detection of biomolecules inside living cells. In this paper, we provide an application of a nanotip coupled with molecular beacons (MBs) for the detection of DNA. The MBs were characterized by hybridization studies with a complementary target to prove their functionality both free in solution and immobilized onto a solid support. The solid support chosen as substrate for the immobilization of the MBs was a 30 nm tapered tip of an optical fiber, fabricated by chemical etching. With this set-up promising results were obtained and a limit of detection (LOD) of 0.57 nM was reached, opening up the possibility of using the proposed nanotip to detect mRNAs inside the cytoplasm of living cells.
Sensors2015, 15(5), 9651-9665; doi:10.3390/s150509651 - published 24 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: Accessing a plant’s 3D geometry has become of significant importance for phenotyping during the last few years. Close-up laser scanning is an established method to acquire 3D plant shapes in real time with high detail, but it is stationary and has high investment costs. 3D reconstruction from images using structure from motion (SfM) and multi-view stereo (MVS) is a flexible cost-effective method, but requires post-processing procedures. The aim of this study is to evaluate the potential measuring accuracy of an SfM- and MVS-based photogrammetric method for the task of organ-level plant phenotyping. For this, reference data are provided by a high-accuracy close-up laser scanner. Using both methods, point clouds of several tomato plants were reconstructed at six following days. The parameters leaf area, main stem height and convex hull of the complete plant were extracted from the 3D point clouds and compared to the reference data regarding accuracy and correlation. These parameters were chosen regarding the demands of current phenotyping scenarios. The study shows that the photogrammetric approach is highly suitable for the presented monitoring scenario, yielding high correlations to the reference measurements. This cost-effective 3D reconstruction method depicts an alternative to an expensive laser scanner in the studied scenarios with potential for automated procedures.
Sensors2015, 15(5), 9628-9650; doi:10.3390/s150509628 - published 23 April 2015 Show/Hide Abstract
Abstract: In this paper, angular displacement and angular velocity sensors based on coplanar waveguide (CPW) transmission lines and S-shaped split ring resonators (S-SRRs) are presented. The sensor consists of two parts, namely a CPW and an S-SRR, both lying on parallel planes. By this means, line-to-resonator magnetic coupling arises, the coupling level being dependent on the line-to-resonator relative angular orientation. The line-to-resonator coupling level is the key parameter responsible for modulating the amplitude of the frequency response seen between the CPW ports in the vicinity of the S-SRR fundamental resonance frequency. Specifically, an amplitude notch that can be visualized in the transmission coefficient is changed by the coupling strength, and it is characterized as the sensing variable. Thus, the relative angular orientation between the two parts is measured, when the S-SRR is attached to a rotating object. It follows that the rotation angle and speed can be inferred either by measuring the frequency response of the S-SRR-loaded line, or the response amplitude at a fixed frequency in the vicinity of resonance. It is in addition shown that the angular velocity can be accurately determined from the time-domain response of a carrier time-harmonic signal tuned at the S-SRR resonance frequency. The main advantage of the proposed device is its small size directly related to the small electrical size of the S-SRR, which allows for the design of compact angular displacement and velocity sensors at low frequencies. Despite the small size of the fabricated proof-of-concept prototype (electrically small structures do not usually reject signals efficiently), it exhibits good linearity (on a logarithmic scale), sensitivity and dynamic range.