Improving the gateway placement algorithm in long range wide area network (LoRaWAN)

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Internet of Things (IoT) is expected to grow exponentially such that the number of devices connected to the internet will be up to 125 billion by the year 2030. IoT end node devices rely on Gateways for data transmission to the internet and to ensure coverage for IoT devices, Gateways need to be optimally placed. However, physical infrastructure and topography as features of the target area are essential for IoT Gateways optimal placement. Recently, Wireless Mesh Networks (WMN) has gained an important role in current communication technologies. It has been used in several applications such as surveillance and rescue systems. Furthermore, the network congestion can be minimised and throughput can be improved by placing many Gateways in the network but on the other hand, deployment cost and interference will increase. Therefore, this work focuses on the Gateway placement algorithms on the newly developed wireless technology called Long Range Wide Area Networks (LoRaWAN) protocol and its performance. A review of existing Gateway Placement Algorithms has been conducted to bring together the state-of-the-art WMN, Mobile Ad hoc Networks (MANETs)-Satellite, Backbone Wireless Mesh Network (BWMN), Vehicular Ad hoc Network (VANET), 5G cellular network, and Low Power Wide Area Network (LPWAN).These Algorithms were studied in different networks to distinguish each of their strengths and weaknesses that require improvements. Literature provided insight into the performance of the existing Gateway placement algorithms in both short-range and long-range transmission. However, it is still not clear how the algorithms perform in a network that supports long-range transmission technologies such as LPWAN. Arising from the foregoing is the need to evaluate the performance of short-range algorithms in LPWAN environment; to improve the algorithms for a long-range technology such as LoRa; assuming that they showed the prospect of overcoming the drawbacks mentioned in the literature review. This study has improved existing Gateway placement algorithm by firstly evaluating the existing algorithms that were implemented in a different environment i.e., short-range transmission, and determining the strength and drawback of those algorithms. Secondly, after the identification of an algorithm with some promising features that can be integrated into a long-range transmission, it is then improved for Gateway placement in LoRa technology. The algorithm implemented previously was for a different purpose and was implemented in a different network. However, due to its capability in the previous environment which can be beneficiary in a newly developed LoRa technology, the algorithm was improved and implemented in LPWAN environment to improve iv Gateway placement. The simulation results showed that the improved algorithm outperformed the existing algorithms. Some of the outstanding observation with the improved algorithm the SF7 accommodated an average of 25% for LoRa nodes created in both network scenarios where other algorithms could accommodate only 20% of the network average. The increase of Gateways in the network can help to reduce the energy consumption by LoRa nodes even though it can be expensive.
A dissertation submitted in fulfilment of the academic requirements for the degree of Master of Science in the Department of Computer Science in the Faculty of Science, Agriculture and Engineering, University of Zululand, 2022.