Architectures and Strategies for Efficient Communication in Wireless Sensor Networks Using Unmanned Aerial Vehicles

Imad Hussein Jawhar, Nader Mohamed, Zouheir Trabelsi, Jameela Al-Jaroodi

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

8 Citations (Scopus)


In recent years, the technology of wireless sensor networks (WSNs) have evolved quickly leading to sensors with increased memory, storage, processing, and communication capabilities. WSNs have many applications in the commercial, environmental, and military fields. In addition, the technology of unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) has gone through revolutionary improvements, which have led to highly advanced UAVs that come in numerous sizes, capabilities, and functions. In order to significantly reduce the energy consumption used in data transmission, reduce radio frequency interference that can be caused with the hidden terminal and collision problems that are present in the multihop data routing approach, and extend the network lifetime, this paper presents different models and strategies for using UAVs for data collection in WSNs. Even though, some of the models can be used for real-time data traffic communication in emergency situations, most of the proposed models are useful for data traffic that is delay tolerant. We define the different types of nodes and devices that are used, and present different UAV-based data collection frameworks including store-and-forward, and real-time data transfer models. The paper also provides several UAV routing algorithms, which use round-robin and demand-driven strategies.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)289-305
Number of pages17
JournalUnmanned Systems
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 1 2016


  • Wireless sensor networks (WSNs)
  • delay-tolerant networks (DTNs)
  • ferry
  • mobile ad hoc networks (MANETs)
  • monitoring
  • routing, unmanned aerial vehicle (UAV)

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Control and Systems Engineering
  • Automotive Engineering
  • Aerospace Engineering
  • Control and Optimization


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