Mutka, Xi and Xiao receive NSF Award

Matt Mutka, Professor of Computer Science and Engineering, Ning Xi, Professor of Electrical and Computer Engineering and Li Xiao, Associate Professor of Computer Science, have received a 3-year NSF grant for a project entitled "Networked Robotic Gerridae for Sensing and Communications in Aquatic Environments." This project proposes to develop new robotic sensors and networking technology to enable inexpensive and rapid deployment of systems that can configure themselves to monitor water conditions, efficiently collect data, process the data, and make predictions and recommendations for rapid response and issue appropriate warnings to residents along the waterways.

There are a number of research issues to explore to develop such a rapidly deployable inexpensive robotic sensor networking system. First, the sensors need to be able to be placed in the water in order to collect samples of chemical or bacterial conditions. Samples also need to be collected at varied heights above water to determine the rate that chemical vapors dissipate. Once samples are collected, the readings need to be communicated to a cyber infrastructure that uses the data from the sensors, models the conditions of the water, and recommends actions to be followed. We propose to develop a small, inexpensive sensor that floats upon the water as it collects samples of chemical or bacterial readings. The sensor can jump, which enables readings above the water at various heights and enables improved communication and localization capabilities. The sensors will be small and easy to place in the water, simply by tossing them into the water from the shore or from a boat. Once the sensors are placed in the water, they communicate with each other to form a multihop sensor network, through which the data samples are efficiently routed to the cyber infrastructure.

(Date Posted: 2013-09-12)