Reliable Broadcasting in ZigBee Networks

Due to scarce resources, such as transmission power, storage space and communication bandwidth, current broadcast approaches for general ad hoc networks can not be applied to IEEE 802.15.4 based ad hoc networks (e.g., ZigBee networks). This paper proposes a forward node selection algorithm that significantly reduces broadcast redundancy. The algorithm exploits the hierarchical address space in ZigBee networks. Only one-hop neighbor information is needed: a partial list of two-hop neighbors is derived at a node without exchanging messages between neighboring nodes. The complexity of the proposed algorithm is polynomial in terms of both computation time and memory space. The localized algorithm provides an optimal and feasible solution of selecting the minimum number of rebroadcast nodes in ZigBee networks, which is an NP-hard problem for general ad hoc networks. The proposed algorithm is extended to deal with packet loss during data transmission. A ZigBee rebroadcast algorithm is also proposed to further reduce the number of rebroadcast nodes and cover the whole network faster by assigning a non-random rebroadcast timer determined by the number of neighbors to be covered, distance and link quality. Simulations are conducted to evaluate the broadcast redundancy, coverage time, and coverage ratio.