Wireless sensor networks are the driving force behind many popular and interdisciplinary research areas, such as environmental monitoring, building automation, healthcare and assisted living applications. Requirements like compactness, high integration of sensors, flexibility, and power efficiency are often very different and cannot be fulfilled by state-of-the-art node platforms at once. In this paper, we present and analyze AmICA: a flexible, compact, easy-to-program, and low-power node platform. Developed from scratch and including a node, a basic communication protocol, and a debugging toolkit, it assists in an user-friendly rapid application development. The general purpose nature of AmICA was evaluated in two practical applications with diametric requirements. Our analysis shows that AmICA nodes are 67% smaller than BTnodes, have five times more sensors than Mica2Dot and consume 72% less energy than the state-of-the-art TelosB mote in sleep mode.
Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN) are dynamically-arranged networks typically composed of a large number of arbitrarily-distributed sensor nodes with computing capabilities contributing to –at least– one common application. The main characteristic of these networks is that of being functionally constrained due to a scarce availability of resources and strong dependence on uncontrollable environmental factors. These conditions introduce severe restrictions on the applicability of classic real-time methods aiming at guaranteeing time-bounded communications. Existing real-time solutions tend to apply concepts that were originally not conceived for sensor networks, idealizing realistic application scenarios and overlooking at important design limitations. This results in a number of misleading practices contributing to approaches of restricted validity in real-world scenarios. Amending the confrontation between WSNs and real-time objectives starts with a review of the basic fundamentals of existing approaches. In doing so, this thesis presents an alternative approach based on a generalized timeliness notion suitable to the particularities of WSNs. The new conceptual notion allows the definition of feasible real-time objectives opening a new scope of possibilities not constrained to idealized systems. The core of this thesis is based on the definition and application of Quality of Service (QoS) trade-offs between timeliness and other significant QoS metrics. The analysis of local and global trade-offs provides a step-by-step methodology identifying the correlations between these quality metrics. This association enables the definition of alternative trade-off configurations (set points) influencing the quality performance of the network at selected instants of time. With the basic grounds established, the above concepts are embedded in a simple routing protocol constituting a proof of concept for the validity of the presented analysis. Extensive evaluations under realistic scenarios are driven on simulation environments as well as real testbeds, validating the consistency of this approach.
The work presented in this thesis discusses the model-based fault diagnosis and fault-tolerant control with application to a nonlinear electro-hydraulic system. High performance control with guaranteed safety and reliability for electro-hydraulic systems is a challenging task due to the high nonlinearity and system uncertainties. This thesis developed a diagnosis integrated fault-tolerant control (FTC) strategy for the electro-hydraulic system. In fault free case the nominal controller is in operation for achieving the best performance. If the fault occurs, the controller will be automatically reconfigured based on the fault information provided by the diagnosis system. Fault diagnosis and reconfigurable controller are the key parts for the proposed methodology. The system and sensor faults both are studied in the thesis. Fault diagnosis consists of fault detection and isolation (FDI). A model-base residual generating is realized by calculating the redundant information from the system model and available signal. In this thesis differential-geometric approach is employed, which gives a general formulation of FDI problem and is more compact and transparent among various model-based approaches. The principle of residual construction with differential-geometric method is to find an unobservable distribution. It indicates the existence of a system transformation, with which the unknown system disturbance can be decoupled. With the observability codistribution algorithm the local weak observability of transformed system is ensured. A Fault detection observer for the transformed system can be constructed to generate the residual. This method cannot isolated sensor faults. In the thesis the special decision making logic (DML) is designed based on the individual signal analysis of the residuals to isolate the fault. The reconfigurable controller is designed with the backstepping technique. Backstepping method is a recursive Lyapunov-based approach and can deal with nonlinear systems. Some system variables are considered as ``virtual controls'' during the design procedure. Then the feedback control laws and the associate Lyapunov function can be constructed by following step-by-step routine. For the electro-hydraulic system adaptive backstepping controller is employed for compensate the impact of the unknown external load in the fault free case. As soon as the fault is identified, the controller can be reconfigured according to the new modeling of faulty system. The system fault is modeled as the uncertainty of system and can be tolerated by parameter adaption. The senor fault acts to the system via controller. It can be modeled as parameter uncertainty of controller. All parameters coupled with the faulty measurement are replaced by its approximation. After the reconfiguration the pre-specified control performance can be recovered. FDI integrated FTC based on backstepping technique is implemented successfully on the electro-hydraulic testbed. The on-line robust FDI and controller reconfiguration can be achieved. The tracking performance of the controlled system is guaranteed and the considered faults can be tolerated. But the problem of theoretical robustness analysis for the time delay caused by the fault diagnosis is still open.