Proc. SPIE. 5417, Unattended/Unmanned Ground, Ocean, and Air Sensor Technologies and Applications VI
KEYWORDS: Digital signal processing, Sensors, Interfaces, Telecommunications, Signal processing, Software development, Analog electronics, Global Positioning System, Unattended ground sensors, Software frameworks
A low-power hardware platform and a software framework to support distributed wireless sensing for unattended ground sensor (UGS) applications has been developed. This platform provides a comprehensive set of hardware capabilities needed to meet the sensing, processing, and communication requirements for UGS, including a 16-channel analog interface, a processor dedicated to managing real-time requirements, dual wireless interfaces, and a low-power system bus to enable system modularity. An open software framework based on the Linux kernel is hosted on the main system processor. This framework incorporates the tools for effectively utilizing the capabilities of the hardware platform and rapidly developing applications in a networked, embedded environment.
A system architecture, and a hardware implementation leveraging the architecture, has been developed for energy-aware, networked, embedded systems designed for use in tactical unattended ground sensor (UGS) applications. This modular system architecture is designed around a flexible bus design that meets the needs for low-power embedded systems, incorporating support for 32-bit inter-module data transfers, module synchronization, power control, and power distribution. A Linux-based software framework operating on the main system processor has been developed to provide application developers with the ability to easily leverage the hardware functionality of the system. The low-power design methods employed in the system design are discussed along with a system implementation using these methods.
In the development of distributed security sensor networks a large variety of prototype systems have been implemented and tested. However these systems tend to be developer specific and require substantial overhead in demonstrating more than one application. To bridge the gap between embedded, networked systems and desktop simulation environments, systems are necessary which are easily deployable and allow extended operation of distributed sensor networks, while allowing the flexibility to quickly test and evaluate a variety of operational algorithms. To enable fast optimization by leveraging the widest development community, open standards for such a portable development system are desired. An open development system allows individual developers and small groups to focus on and optimize specific aspects of a distributed sensor network within realistic deployment constraints, prior to complete integration and deployment of a system within a specific application. By providing an embedded sensor and processing platform with integrated wired and wireless networking, a modular software suite separating access and control of individual processes, and open APIs, algorithm development and software optimization can be greatly accelerated and more robustly tested. To meet the unique needs of distributed sensor network applications, additional separation must be provided between the access to various subsystems, for example real-time embedded control versus tasks with less stringent timing requirements. An open platform that separates these requirements allows developers to accelerate testing and development of applications by focusing on individual components of the distributed sensor system, such as target tracking or low power networking. The WINS NG 2.0 developer's platform, provided by Sensoria Corporation for the DARPA/ITO Sensor Information Technology (SensIT) program, provides one example of such a system. This systems bridge the gap between dedicated desktop development environments and embedded application-specif
Wireless Integrated Network Systems (WINS) provide distributed network and Internet access to sensors, controls, and processors that are deeply embedded in equipment, facilities, and the environment. The WINS network is a new monitoring and control capability for applications in transportation, manufacturing, health care, environmental monitoring, and safety and security. WINS combine microsensor technology, low power signal processing, low power computation, and low power, low cost wireless networking capability in a compact system. WINS networks will provide sensing, local control, and embedded intelligent systems in structures, materials, and environments. This paper describes the WINS architecture and WINS technology components including sensor interface and WINS event recognition systems.