Wednesday, September 15, 2010

How to Monitor a house

(Work in Progress)
In building sensor networks there are  2 main design patterns using either wired or wireless networks

Central System

Sensors connect to a central computer that handles all of the information.

  • Only one computer to program
  • Data is gathered all in one place 
  • Wireless: devices can sleep to save power when between gathering samples.
  • Wireless: cheaper transmitters.
  • If the computer crashes, no data can be gathered. 
  • Wired: lots of wires, and the signal gets degraded the longer the cable is.
  • Wireless: All the sensors have to be in range of the base station

  • Each sensors has it's own microcomputer that logs the data 
  • Data can be stored until it can be shared
  • Less wires
  • Network can withstand multiple device failures
  • Complex
  • Harder to program
  • More hardware, More expensive 
  • Wireless: modules can't sleep because they have to relay the messages of others.
My Plan

I plan on building a network that combines the strengths of both systems. Sensors in a house are often clustered together.  I plan on building a set of sensor hubs that are placed through out the house and are interconnected building a mesh network. Each hub can read multiple sensors and relay this data to it's neighbors. passing along messages until it reaches an output point.

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