Wireless sensor and actor networks (WSANs) are the confluence point where the traditional fields of wireless sensor networks (WSNs), robot networks and control theory meet. In WSAN, nodes collaborate to accomplish distributed sensing and actuation tasks. Leveraged by the control and mobility of actors, the networking process and applications embrace a whole new set of possibilities. Actors may deploy, repair and relocate sensors to improve coverage, build routes and fix network partition to ensure data communication, change network topology to shape routing patterns and balance energy consumption, and respond to reported events in a timely and effective manner. The benefits are limited only by imagination. As an emerging field, WSANs are in need of new networking techniques, by which they can fully exploit their particularities and potentials. WiSARN aims to bring together state-of-the-art contributions on the design, specification and implementation of architectures, algorithms and protocols for current and future applications of WSAN.

The 8th International Workshop on Wireless Sensor, Actuator and Robot Networks (WiSARN 2014) will be held in conjunction with The 13th International Conference on Ad-Hoc Networks and Wireless that will take place at in Benidorm, Spain, from the 22nd to the 27th of June, 2014.

Extended versions of selected papers will be considered for publication in the
IEEE Transactions on Control of Network systems

(see http://sites.bu.edu/tcns/ for submission instructions)

Keynote Speaker

Dr. Luis Almeida
University of Porto – Faculty of Engineering, Portugal

Structuring Communication for Better Coordination in Mobile Cyber-Physical Systems

Mobile autonomous agents are becoming common in a wide range of applications ranging from search and rescue to demining, surveillance and many others. These are, in fact, a special case of Cyber-Physical Systems in which the intertwining between the cyber and physical worlds is flexible. These so-called mobile cyber-physical systems (M-CPS) allow relocating sensors and actuators dynamically to improve global performance, be it improved sensing, improved control or more efficient actuation or use of resources. However, achieving the necessary cooperation is not trivial given that agents are frequently heterogeneous, they set up and break links during their mission leading to a highly dynamic network topology and the communication channel is prone to interference from many sources.

In this talk we will address some of the main issues that need to be solved to build efficient M-CPS such as synchronization, information sharing, membership, location-awareness and consensus. We will illustrate these issues with a few case studies, including a robotic soccer team from RoboCup Middle-Size League, which also exhibits most of the typical requirements and constraints of M-CPS. The focus will be on the networking and middleware infrastructures and we will advocate the use of dynamically reconfigurable and adaptive techniques to cope efficiently with the uncertainties of the topology, membership and interference, reducing their negative impact on the coordination applications performance.


Dr. Almeida received the Licenciatura degree in electronics and telecommunications engineering and a PhD in electrical engineering from the University of Aveiro, Portugal, in 1988 and 1999, respectively. He is currently an associate professor in the Electrical and Computer Engineering Department of the University of Porto, Portugal, and a senior researcher at IT and IEETA Research Units. Formerly, he was a design engineer in a company producing digital telecommunications equipment. His research interests include real-time networks for distributed industrial/embedded systems and control architectures for mobile ro bots. He is a member of the IEEE Computer Society and the RoboCup Federation.