Mobile robots in wireless sensor networks: A survey on tasks

Hailong Huang, Andrey V. Savkin, Ming Ding, Chao Huang

Research output: Journal article publicationJournal articleAcademic researchpeer-review


Wireless sensor networks (WSNs) provide a virtual layer where the information about the physical world can be accessed by computational systems. Mobile robots have long been playing a vital role in WSNs and tremendous research efforts have been devoted to how to make use of mobile robots to enhance system performance during the last decades. This paper reviews a range of techniques related to mobile robots in WSNs. We have divided the literature into three categories according to the tasks that are executed by mobile robots: 1) Collection, where mobile robots collect information from sensor nodes; 2) Delivery, where mobile robots give things such as energy to sensor nodes; 3) Combination, where mobile robots simultaneously collect and deliver. The existing solutions are described following the proposed taxonomy. To help readers comprehend the flow within each category, the relationship among different solutions is outlined, with detailed descriptions as well as in-depth analysis. More importantly, we compare the differences and similarities between the available approaches across various categories in terms of mathematical formulation, application, etc. Finally, we are able to identify several open issues that receive little attention up to now or remain unexplored yet.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)1-19
JournalComputer Networks
Publication statusPublished - 15 Jan 2019
Externally publishedYes


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