Inverting systems of embedded sensors for position verification in location-aware applications

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

2 Scopus citations


Wireless sensor networks are typically deployed to monitor phenomena that vary over the spatial region the sensor network covers. The sensor readings may also be dual-used for additional purposes. In this paper, we propose to use the inherent spatial variability in physical phenomena, such as temperature or ambient acoustic energy, to support localization and position verification. We first present the problem of localization using general spatial information fields, and then, propose a theory for exploiting this spatial variability for localization. Our Spatial Correlation Weighting Mechanism (SCWM) uses spatial correlation across different phenomena to isolate an appropriate subset of environmental parameters for better location accuracy. We then develop an array of algorithms employing environmental parameters using a two-level approach: first, we develop the strategies on how the subset of parameters should be chosen, and second, we derive mapping functions for position estimation. Our algorithms support our theoretical model for performing localization utilizing environmental properties. Finally, we provide an experimental evaluation of our approach by using a collection of physical phenomena measured across 100 locations inside a building. Our results provide strong evidence of the viability of using general sensor readings for location-aware applications.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Article number5159345
Pages (from-to)722-736
Number of pages15
JournalIEEE Transactions on Parallel and Distributed Systems
Issue number5
StatePublished - 2010
Externally publishedYes

All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes

  • Signal Processing
  • Hardware and Architecture
  • Computational Theory and Mathematics


  • Localization
  • Sensor networks
  • Wireless networks


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