Conference Paper

Wireless mesh access point routing for efficient communication in underground mine

Lab. de Recherche en Commun. Souterraines, Que.
DOI: 10.1109/APS.2006.1710589 Conference: Antennas and Propagation Society International Symposium 2006, IEEE
Source: IEEE Xplore

ABSTRACT The reliability and survivability of conventional communications systems in harsh mining environments has always been a problem. The extreme conditions such as falling rock, collapsing tunnels, fires, explosions and flooding, during which communications are needed most, can also render them inoperable. An emergency underground communication system needs to be very robust with respect to these and other potential hazards. This paper deals with wireless backbone positioning for mesh wireless local area (WLAN) network. The routing problem is simulated to define the best position to place the wireless access point in mine galleries. The optimization strategy applied to the network design problem is the genetic algorithm. From various criteria such as the power profile through the mining gallery and the average SNIR level, the genetic algorithm treats all the possible positions and determines the optimal one for an effective communication. Optimization results considering density effect and other parameters such as the range, the hop number, the received power variation, the connection quality between access points are present

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    ABSTRACT: The underground communication in tunnels and mines is very challenging due to the hostile nature of the environments and to the propagation issues that electromagnetic waves suffer there. Communication is often unidirectional (e.g. in mines) or very costly (e.g. leaky feeder in road tunnels) and hard to install and maintain. This work proposes the use of multi-hop ad-hoc networks to provide multimedia communication between mobile nodes in such a hostile environments, relying on a complete hardware/software, cheap and easy-to-setup platform that can be used both as temporary or fixed infrastructure or as communication backbone in emergency scenarios like mine accidents or a tunnel collapse. The communication is based on the Real-Time Multi-hop Protocol (RT-WMP) and its QoS extension executed over several nodes equipped with specific hardware. This protocol manages delay sensitive messages and the node mobility across the network while the QoS extension is responsible for allowing the end-to-end voice communication. The specific topology and situation have driven to a specialization of RT-WMP to better perform in this type of environments, taking advantage of the a priori (partial) knowledge about the topology. This proposal was tested in a real application in the Somport tunnel, the about 8 km-long railroad linking Canfranc, Spain with Pau, France.
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