Research Article Open Access

Operating System Support for Wireless Sensor Networks

Ant A. Fröhlich and Lucas F. Wanner


In a wireless sensor network, several sensor nodes obtain local data and communicate among themselves in order to create a global vision of an object of study. The idea of a self-managed network of low-power, autonomous devices, that collects data from an environment and propagates information through a wireless link brought about several new challenges and requirements in application run-time support. Several research projects have aimed at solving the problem of system support for sensor networks. However, most of them have failed in dealing with two requirements: transparent configuration of the data communication channel and efficient and unified sensor hardware abstraction. In this work we designed and implemented a run-time support environment for wireless sensor network applications based on the EPOS operating system. Through this environment, applications were allowed to configure the communication channel according to their needs and to acquire sensor data through a family-based, uniform, sensor data acquisition API. Our tests showed that the introduction this environment did not incur in excessive overhead and presented significant advantages in relation to the solutions found in other operating systems for sensor networks.

Journal of Computer Science
Volume 4 No. 4, 2008, 272-281


Submitted On: 27 February 2008 Published On: 30 April 2008

How to Cite: Fröhlich, A. A. & Wanner, L. F. (2008). Operating System Support for Wireless Sensor Networks. Journal of Computer Science, 4(4), 272-281.

  • 13 Citations



  • Embedded operating systems
  • sensor abstraction
  • configurable communication systems