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2016 International Conference on Global Trends in Signal Processing, Information Computing and Communication

A Military Surveillance System based on Wireless

Sensor Networks with Extended Coverage Life
Mr.Chaitanya Vijaykumar Mahamuni
P.G.Research Scholar (Fellow)
Department of Electronics & Telecommunication Engineering
Fr. Conceicao Rodrigues Institute of Technology, Vashi, Navi Mumbai, Maharashtra, India

Abstract— The military services and applications comprises a The pictorial representation of a military surveillance scenario
large acres of areas. It encompasses arms, ammunition weapons, is shown in Fig.1 [2].
tools and confidential data. A large number of soldiers are active
at the national borders and hostile regions to safeguard the
civilian people and enhance the security to them; though, in the
case of any emergency, some mechanism based on the modern
electronics and technology is essential to alert the military
officers active in surveillance areas so that they can make a
prompt arrangement to lock the security and tighten the forces.
Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) is one of the upcoming
technologies in the field of wireless communication which can
play an effective role in the monitoring of the remote areas for
applications like military surveillance, seismic activity
monitoring, earthquake detection and disaster relief operations
etc. The nodes are randomly deployed in the sensor field for such
applications because of which the density of nodes in some part of
the area to be monitored will be more and other areas might be
very less. Another problem is the physical access to sensor nodes Fig.1 Pictorial representation of military surveillance scenario [2]
in these areas is extremely challenging, so the human intervention
is not easy. Thus, the replacement of nodes or recharging their The areas where the surveillance has to be done by the military
batteries is practically impossible. The paper presents a forces include the borders of a nation through which enemies
prototype model of the surveillance system for the military can enter and an attack may be launched. It can be either a
application using wireless sensor networks and the work progress huge piece of land or an ocean. Hence, a thorough geographical
accomplished till now has been reported. The objective of the study of the surveillance area has to be carried out. The soldiers
work is to achieve an energy efficient performance of the system carrying a wireless phone (two-way radio) are the wireless
by optimizing the node schedule and to study the feasibility of its clients. There are armored and patrolling vehicles (terrestrial as
implementation in the context of the military application. well as aerial) enabled with RADAR present at the site. If the
national border is an ocean, then for the monitoring of the
Keywords — Wireless sensor networks, optimal backoff time, oceanic areas, ships, boats and water vehicles are needed,
sleep scheduling, military, surveillance system etc which are under the influence and the command of the naval
Introduction forces. Their communication with the local and central control
units is enabled by the advanced technologies like SATCOM
Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN) is defined as a collection Radio, Backhaul Radio, Wireless Access Point and UAV Link
of the specialized transducers enabled with a suitable Radio [3]. The various sensors like acoustic, vibration, seismic
communication infrastructure designed for the purpose of and motion sensors are used. The military surveillance systems
either monitoring or recording different designed conditions at should take care of battlefield surveillance and enemy tracking,
diverse locations. The commonly monitored parameters using a monitoring the borders, monitoring the friendly forces, the
sensor network include temperature, pressure, humidity, reconnaissance of opposing forces, equipment and ammunition,
direction and the wind’s speed, illumination, vibration, and the target tracking, the battle damage assessment, and the
sound intensities, power-line voltage, body functions and nuclear, biological and chemical attack detection [4]. In a
pollutant levels. The sensor network has one of the key military surveillance region, since the area to be covered is
advantages that they are capable of eliminating the gap huge, the manual deployment of nodes is not possible; the
between the physical and logical worlds as they gather the sensor nodes are released from UAV i.e. Unmanned Air
information from physical world and communicate it to the Vehicles (e.g. helicopter) in the field. The height from which
powerful logical devices that are able to effectively process it. nodes have to be dispersed and the probability of their falling
Thus, if we harness the ability of the technology, it can lead to are decided prior to their deployment. Though, there is a
a reduced need for the human intervention or the interference uniform distribution of probability for falling of nodes, it is
for the information gathering in the military and civilian practically not possible to have uniformly distributed nodes
applications [1]. This paper presents the prototype of a WSN everywhere in the field. The random deployment of sensor
based military surveillance system nodes through their aerial dispersion is shown in Fig.2 [5].

978-1-5090-0467-6/16/$31.00 ©2016 IEEE 375


The scarcest resource of a WSN node is energy, and it

determines the lifetime of it. The WSNs are meant to be
deployed in large numbers in the various environments,
including remote and hostile regions, with ad-hoc
communications as key. For this reason, the algorithms and
protocols of it need to address the following issues [6]:
1. Lifetime maximization
2. Robustness and fault tolerance
3. Self-configuration

Besides these, the security, the mobility i.e. when the sensor
nodes or base stations are moving and the middleware design
i.e. the design of the middle-level primitives between the
software and hardware are some of the hot topics on which the
Fig.2 Random deployment of nodes through aerial dispersion [5] research is going on.
As it is seen in Fig.2, due to the random deployment of nodes As discussed in Section I, the sensor nodes are randomly
from the air vehicle, the nodes gets scattered i.e. more nodes distributed over a huge area i.e. national borders, hostile
will fall in one area while fewer nodes in some other area. The regions etc for the military surveillance. It is practically not
density of nodes will not remain same throughout. Hence, possible that these nodes last in their field for a very long time.
100% coverage of the area of the field is not possible. But still The replacement of their batteries, recharging or removing
the energy efficient coverage of the maximum area of the them is not possible. Thus, it becomes necessary that the nodes
sensor field, possibly for a longer time is important. The deployed in a field should be utilized properly without wasting
requirements of the military surveillance system based on the power associated with them to achieve an energy efficient
WSN are as listed and explained below [1]. network performance. The problem with the multiple random
1. Long Life: The activities and almost everything related to the nodes covering an area is conveyed through Fig.3 [7].
military services are highly confidential; and also, the hostile
territories under surveillance are inaccessible due to which
there is a prime requirement of the energy-aware schemes that
can extend the network lifetime.
2. Controllable Sensitivity: In order to incorporate the different
types of environment and the requirements of security, there is
a need for the controllable sensitivity. If the mission is very
critical then only under the condition that the application is
highly sensitive, the essential targets will be captured even at
the expense of the false alarming. Another possibility is that
lower the likelihood of false alarming in order to avoid any
inappropriate action and the wasteful power consumption.
3. Sleathiness: There is a very less possibility of the detection Fig.3 Problem with multiple random nodes covering an area [7]
and interception in the military surveillance systems. The
reduction of the size of the sensing devices will make it From Fig.3, it is clear that there is wasteful power consumption
difficult to locate and find the targets in the field. During when all the randomly deployed nodes are active
surveillance, the detection of RF signals is feasible if the simultaneously. The nodes whose coverage circles are outlined
sensors undergo active communication. However, if no event is with black colour have an overlapping coverage with the nodes
detected then there should not be any communication exposure. whose coverage circles are outlined with red colour. Thus,
when the nodes with the red coverage circles can effectively
4. Effectiveness: The effectiveness of a surveillance system can cover the area, the other nodes within its coverage will remain
be evaluated on the basis of the following: active. This will result in the power inefficient utilization of the
1) Precision in finding the location of an event. nodes and ultimately, the poor network coverage as the
2) Delay in reporting an event. network formed by the nodes will not exist for a substantially
The accuracy and latency play a very important role in the long time. The optimization of the node schedule can prolong
evaluation of the system performance. However, the necessity the network’s life by the energy saving of the nodes.
of the two metrics can be less prioritized in the tracking The objective of the work which is presented in this paper is to
applications. For example, it may be accepted to get the practically observe and study the effect of the optimization of
estimation within a couple of feet & receive the object node schedule on the network performance in the WSN
detection within a few seconds. Thus, the other two metrics application of military surveillance by developing its prototype
need to be accorded more priority in the design of the system. model and the testing of it.

The rest of the paper is organized as follows: III discusses the IV. RELATED WORK
methodology and the flow of work, IV discusses the related
work, V discusses the optimization of the node schedule for a The work related to the tracking and detection in WSN’s is
better coverage in WSN’s, VI discusses the design and discussed in [8]. The detection and tracking of moving objects
implementation of the system, the progress of the work till date were found as the applications to which WSN technology suits
is discussed in VII. The conclusion and the future work are well and benefits it. A brief summary of it is given in Table. I.
given in VIII.
Table. I Summary of the related work [8]

The term research methodology is a systematic plan drafted to

conduct the research in a right direction and accomplish the
research objectives successfully. The flow of work was
outlined as per the methodology and it is explained below.

1. Theoretical study of military surveillance scenarios: A

complete theoretical study of the military surveillance
scenarios was carried out to understand how the modern
electronics and the technologies can be applied to serve the
military needs. The study showed that WSN’s can be
effectively used in the military borders to keep the track of any
movement across it. The different requirements of the military
surveillance system were studied. There are several papers in which the problem of the energy
consumption of nodes in the surveillance system is addressed
2. Study of major findings and limitations in the reported work: and an effort has been made to solve it. The common approach
An extensive literature survey of the work related to the is to consider a group of nodes, let them be active and put the
military surveillance in WSN’s was carried out. The major remaining nodes into the sleep state. In the paper [9], the
findings and the limitations in the work reported were studied authors have proposed an energy efficient surveillance system
to find if there is any further scope for the improvisation of the for the detection and to keep the track of the moving vehicles
system in terms of lifetime maximization. in the field. It becomes essential to cover every single point in
the field as the application is very crucial and highly sensitive.
3. Study of energy efficient network performance based on A layered architecture which is efficient in terms of power
optimized node scheduling in WSN’s: The optimization of the management for the collaborative detection and tracking of the
node schedule is one of the best techniques to prevent the events is used. In the paper [10], the idea of the surveillance of
wasteful power consumption of nodes to prolong the coverage by using the video sensors for critical purposes with a
network’s coverage life. The various algorithms for it were provision to model the behavior functions by using Bezier
studied and the use of optimal node scheduling based on the curves is proposed. The Bezier curves were used to adjust the
leftover battery of the active node and its probability failure frame capture rate depending on the redundancy level and how
was decided. critical the requirement of the application is. The outcome of it
is the energy conservation. The work reported in the papers [9-
4. Design and implementation of the system: The system to be 10] is mentioned in [11]. In the paper [11], the boundaries of
developed by us is a prototype model of military surveillance the area to be monitored were identified and all the nodes
system which is energy efficient in terms of network coverage. deployed over the boundary were made active. The remaining
The block diagram of the system was made and as per the nodes were alternatively made active or sleep to save their
block diagram, the components were selected by studying the power. The Greedy Perimeter Stateless Routing (GPSR)
technical specifications of them given in their datasheets. The protocol was used for routing the packets. The attempt to
selected components include PIR motion sensor, Arduino forward a high percentage of the alert messages generated by
MEGA 2560 and XBee Series1 module. The circuit was the sentry nodes to sink was made. In the paper [12], a new
designed accordingly. The testing of the raw components and idea has been proposed for the energy efficient target coverage
the processing of the sensor output using the microcontroller is in the field because of which the eligible sensor sets are
done. The remaining work is in progress. formed by checking the sensors within the threshold range
sense with a certain desired level of accuracy or not. The work
5. Performance evaluation of the system: The subjective as presented in this paper is targeted to maximize the network
well as the objective evaluation of the performance is essential lifetime by inducing a right amount of sleep to the nodes with
since a real-time problem is targeted by us. The working of the the intention of their power saving. The decision of the
system will be practically observed and its performance will be algorithm to be used to assign sleep schedule is made by taking
evaluated. The objective evaluation will be carried out by the into account numerous factors. The next section of the paper is
calculation of Coverage Lifetime (CL) and the subjective a brief survey of the work related to energy efficient network
evaluation will be carried out on the basis of real-time performance is WSNs and the factors to be considered by us
observation after which the final conclusion will be made. for the optimization of node schedule are stated


The energy efficient network performance in all the aspects i.e. The block diagram of the prototype model of the military
sensing phenomenon, generating equivalent electrical output, surveillance system to be developed by us is shown in Fig.5.
data aggregation, it’s routing, and network coverage is very
important. A literature survey of it is presented in [13]. A
relative study and the comparative analysis of various energy PIR MOTION ZIGBEE
efficiency schemes in WSNs are reported in [14]. A literature SENSOR MODULE
survey-based study of the coverage and connectivity in WSN’s
for the optimal performance is discussed in [15]. In [16], the
Random Backoff Sleep Protocol (RBSP) which randomizes the REGULATED
sleep schedule based on the residual battery percentage of POWER SUPPLY
active node is reported. The limitation of RBSP is that it
Fig.5. Block diagram of the system
doesn’t account the failure of active nodes. The Optimal
Backoff Sleep Time Algorithm reported in [17] calculates the
sleep time of a probing node using the multiple binning levels The components of the system (shown in Fig.5) and the
of the active node’s leftover battery percentage and the implementation of it are discussed below.
allowable latency in internode communication. The Optimal 1. Power supply: The power supply to be used is 6V, 1 Ah
Backoff Sleep Time Protocol reported in [18] suggests the Lead acid batteries which are compact, portable, easy to use
blacklisting of failure nodes based on RSS (Received Signal and rechargeable and hence, they can be repeatedly used. The
Strength) and RTT (Round Trip Time). The work reported in 9V, 1A adapter which is usually used to charge cell phones or
[19] incorporates the active node failure to decide the sleep DC regulated power supply can be used to recharge them.
time but difficult to implement for the runtime. The presence of 2. PIR motion sensor [22]: The Passive Infrared (PIR) motion
an active node within the coverage of its probing node and the sensor measures the IR radiating light from objects in the field
probability of its failure is taken into consideration to optimize of view. All the objects with a temperature above absolute zero
node schedule in [20-21] described by flowchart given in Fig.4. emit heat energy in the form of IR radiation. The maximum
sensitivity range is up to 20 feet (6 meters) and the range of
START detection is 110° x 70°. It consists of two slots made up of
special material which is sensitive to IR. The PIR lens (Fresnel
lens) is a small, thin and moldable made from a cheap plastic.
ACTIVE ALL NODES BY A RANDOMIZED TIMER AND PROBE The purpose of using it is that it condenses light, providing a
large range of IR but it may add some distortion. When any
NO warm bodies like a human being or an animal passes, it first
intercepts one half of the PIR sensor. This causes a positive
CHECK IF ANY ACTIVE differential change between two halves. When a warm body
leaves, a negative differential change is generated. The change
in these pulses is detected. This is shown in Fig.6 [22] below.





Fig.4 The flow chart of the operation of network when nodes are subjected to
sleep schedule mechanism [21] Fig.6 Working of PIR motion sensor [22]

For the prototype of the military surveillance system proposed Fig.6 shows working of the PIR sensor, when an object passes
in this paper, the optimal node scheduling algorithm based on through the detecting area, the positive and negative
the randomized sleep assignment and the active node failure differential pulses are generated. The output signal of PIR
probability to extend the coverage life is used. This algorithm sensor is also shown. Fig.7 shows the internal circuit diagram
extends the coverage lifetime by about 10.2% [21]. and it gives a clear idea of how exactly the PIR sensor works.

The XBee Series1 module has been selected for the wireless
transmission of data. It is the most popular XBee wireless
module; the Series1 uses 802.15.4 protocol. The important
advantages of XBee Series1 module are as follows: 1 mW
wire antenna, it can be employed for the applications
involving point-to-point, multipoint and convertible to a mesh
network point. It gives an improved performance in terms of
range i.e. approximately a double range due to the presence of
Fig.7 Internal Circuit diagram of PIR sensor [22] a wire antenna instead of the chip antenna.
The three units i.e. the PIR motion sensor, the ARDUINO
As it is seen in Fig.7, the IR energy is incident on the two slots board and the XBee module placed on the shield, and
connected in series with each other after passing through assembled together is shown in Fig. 9 [26].
Fresnel lens. If the active elements of the PIR sensor are
exposed to a change in the surrounding temperature field, the
electrical charges are separated from the sensor elements. The
voltage across the sensors controls a J-FET source follower
impedance converter and thus, modulates the output current of
the PIR detector.
3. ATmega 2560 [23]: The ATmega2560 AVR comes with an
entire set of program and the system development tools
including macro assemblers, C compilers, in-circuit emulators,
program debugger/simulators and evaluation kits. The
ATmega2560 has an excellent interfacing capability with XBee
modules. The steps for programming the microcontroller are
given in the flowchart in Fig.8 Fig.9 Assembly of all the units of the system [26]


NO The progress of the work till date is discussed in this section of

IS RECEIVE BUFFER the paper. The testing of PIR sensors used by us for the
EMPTY? purpose of the motion detection, the processing of the output of
it using the microcontroller and the configuration of the XBee
modules is done which is explained below.
READ OUTPUT OF PIR SENSOR AND DIGITIZE IT 1. Testing of PIR sensors: The testing of PIR sensors was done
by mounting them on the breadboard and the variable DC
power supply was connected. The LED accompanied with a
series current limiting resistor was used as the indicator for the
detection of motion. It is shown in Fig.10.




Fig.8 Steps for programming the microcontroller

4. XBee Series1 module (ZigBee Technology) [24-25]: The

main reason for the invention of ZigBee is that it supports the
battery powered applications where low data rate, low cost,
and longer battery life are required. The lower data-rate allows Fig.10 Testing of PIR sensors
better sensitivity but a lesser throughput will be obtained.
ZigBee is used to meet the requirements like low cost, easy to It was observed that when the hand was not placed in front of
install, very low power consumption, use of unlicensed radio the dome of the PIR sensor, the LED did not glow. However,
frequencies, flexibility, interoperability, and extendibility of when the hand was placed within the detection range of it and
networks. Thus, ZigBee forms an ideal choice for the wireless moved to and fro across the sensitivity range, the LED glowed
transmission of signals in wireless ad hoc sensor networks. and kept glowing unless the hand was removed.

The next step was to check how the output of PIR sensors VIII. CONCLUSION AND FUTURE WORK
could be processed by using the microcontroller.
2. Processing sensor output using microcontroller: The PIR The use of the optimal node scheduling based on the presence
sensor was connected to ARDUINO board which was of an active node within range of its probing node and the
interfaced with the PC terminal using ARDUINO cable shown likelihood of its failure for the energy efficient coverage of
in Fig.11. WSN’s for the military surveillance application is discussed in
the paper. The prototype model of an energy efficient
surveillance system is to be developed. The progress of the
work done till now has been reported in the paper. Further, we
are planning to use the video sensors or PIR sensor with
camera recorder. As soon as any motion is detected, a SMS
would be sent via XBee module through a GSM modem. The
camera will capture images. However, the images cannot be
sent by using ZigBee as the data rate of it is less. Though, the
captured images can be streamed via the internet, the power
supply and network connection requirement of it can constrain
the system to be developed as it is designed to be used in harsh
ad-hoc networking scenarios. All the factors to make this idea
practically feasible and implementable are being worked on. If
it works, then sentry nodes precisely covering the peripheral
areas can be accompanied with a camera whereas interior
nodes will work normally i.e. they will simply detect the
motion. Presently, we are working on this possibility, based on
Fig.11 PIR sensor-ARDUINO Interface-PC Terminal
the outcome of which the final development of the system will
be carried out.
The microcontroller can be programmed directly by writing the
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