In this paper, novel energy-aware and reliable routing protocols are proposed. The aim is to maximize the lifespan of wireless sensor networks (WSNs) subject to predefined reliability constraints by using multi-hop routing schemes, in which the source node forwards the packet to the base station (BS) via other nodes as relays. In the first proposed protocol, energy efficiency is achieved by maximizing the minimum residual energy of the path subject to fulfilling a predefined reliability constraints. The second protocol is an optimized version of the first one with respect to lifespan and complexity. The optimal path is the one in which the residual energy distribution of the nodes along the path is as close to uniform as possible and the packet arrives at the base station with a given success probability. To measure the uniformity of the residual energy distribution, we use an entropy like measure. The information about the current energy state of the network is maintained by using a look-up-table from which the optimal routes are computed on the BS. The BS broadcasts the updated optimal paths to each node after each round of packet transmission.
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