Bilkent University
Department of Computer Engineering


A framework for use of wireless sensor networks in forest fire detection and monitoring


Yunus Emre Aslan
MSc. Student
Computer Engineering Department
Bilkent University

Wireless sensor networks have a broad range of applications in the category of environmental monitoring. In this thesis, we consider the problem of forest fire detection and monitoring as a possible application area of wireless sensor networks. Forest fires are one of the main causes of environmental degradation nowadays. The current surveillance systems for forest fires lack in supporting real-time monitoring of every point of the region at all time and early detection of the fire threats. Solutions using wireless sensor networks, on the other hand, can gather temperature and humidity values from all points of field constinously, day and night, and, provide fresh and accurate data to the fire fighter center quickly. However, sensor networks and nodes face serious obstacles like limited energy resources and high vulnerability to harsh environmental conditions, that have to be considered carefully. In our study, we propose a comprehensive framework for the use of wireless sensor networks for forest fire detection and monitoring. Our framework includes proposals for the WSN architecture, clustering and communication propotocols, and environment/season-aware activity-rate selection schemes to detect the fire threat as early as possible and yet consider the energy consumption of the sensor nodes and the physical conditions that may hinder the activity of the network. We also implemented a simulator to validate and evaluate our proposed framework, which is using an external fire simulator library. We did extensive simulation experiments and observed that our framework can provide fast reaction to forest fires while also consuming energy efficiently.


DATE: 31 August, 2010, Tuesday @ 14:40