Date of Completion


Embargo Period



John Chandy, Shengli Zhou

Field of Study



Master of Science

Open Access

Campus Access


Energy supply is a challenging issue for information and communications technology. With advances in energy harvesting technologies, it is now feasible to build sustain- able sensor and communications networks that have the potential to solve the problem. Unlike traditional battery-powered systems with stable energy supply, over-design at each level and energy efficient computing to ensure performance, the objective of sustainable is to effectively utilize continuous streams of renewable ambient energy and replace over-design with rightsizing coupled with smart control for minimizing environment impact of infrastructure over its entire life-cycle.

This thesis explored approaches for sustainable sensing and communications networks with Ultra-Wide Band (UWB) technology, which is a strong candidate for Wireless Body Area Networks (WBAN) and Wireless Sensor Networks (WSN) applications. The link and energy adaptive UWB based sensing system adjusts the pulse repetition frequency of the UWB radar with jointly exploiting of link information and the non-deterministic characteristics of renewable energy. With minor overhead from the power management unit to improve detection time and range coverage, as well as increase insensitivity to practical issues such as insufficient battery capacity or battery aging. The adaptive Pulse Amplitude Modulation for self-powered IR-UWB based communications networks dynamically adjusts the modulation level in addition to existing energy synchronizing technologies to further balance energy harvesting and consumption with jointly consideration of link condition and energy level. Simulation results demonstrate that the proposed technique achieves a much higher data rate and better time coverage and becomes insensitive to battery aging effects.

Major Advisor

Lei Wang