Ad-Hoc Wireless Sensor Networks For Exploration Of Solar-System Bodies
In this work, we evaluate the exploration of the Solar system by ad-hoc wireless sensor networks (WSN), i.e. networks where all nodes (either moving or stationary) can both provide and relay data. The two aspects of self-organization and localization are the major challenges to achieve a reliable network for a variety of missions. We point out the diversity of environmental and operational constrains that WSN used for space exploration would face. We evaluate two groups of scenarios consisting in static or moving sensing nodes that can be either located on the ground or in the atmosphere of a Solar system object. These scenarios enable collecting data simultaneously over a large surface or volume. We consider physical and chemical sensing of the atmosphere, surface and soil using such networks. Emerging technologies such as nodes localization techniques are reviewed. Finally, we compare the specific requirements of WSN for space exploration with those of WSN designed for terrestrial applications.