On the Impact of Energy Harvesting on Wireless Sensor Network Security

Alessio Di Mauro

Research output: Book/ReportPh.D. thesisResearch

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Given the continuous advancements in the technology of energy harvesting over the last few years, we are now starting to see wireless sensor networks (WSNs) powered by scavenged energy. This change in paradigm has major repercussions not only on the hardware engineering aspects, but also on the software side. The first protocols specifically designed to take advantage of the energy harvesting capabilities of a network have just recently appeared. At the same time, security remains one of the central points of WSNs development, because of their intrinsically
unreliable nature that combines a readily accessible communication infrastructure such as wireless data exchange, to an often likewise readily accessible physical deployment. This dissertation provides a comprehensive look at how security can be improved by what energy harvesting has to offer. The main question asked is whether or not it is possible to provide better security in a WSN, by being aware of the fact that the amount of available energy is not going to monotonically decrease over time. The work covers different aspects and components of a WSN and focuses on what is arguably one the most important ones, medium access control (MAC) protocols. An energy-harvesting specific MAC protocol is introduced together with a related security suite. A new attack relevant to a whole class of MAC protocols is also introduced, along with a scheme that defeats it. A security approach for MAC protocols is discussed to provide an energy-aware solution. In order to address security bootstrapping, a new energy-adaptive key reinforcement scheme is presented. Finally an implementation and some experimental results are provided.
Original languageEnglish
Place of PublicationKgs. Lyngby
PublisherTechnical University of Denmark
Number of pages144
Publication statusPublished - 2015
SeriesDTU Compute PHD-2014


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