An Optimal Task Scheduling Algorithm in Wireless Sensor Networks

  • Liang Dai State Key Laboratory of Integrated Service Networks Xidian University Xi’an 710071, China
  • Yilin Chang State Key Laboratory of Integrated Service Networks Xidian University Xi’an 710071, China
  • Zhong Shen State Key Laboratory of Integrated Service Networks Xidian University Xi’an 710071, China


Sensing tasks should be allocated and processed among sensor nodes in minimum times so that users can draw useful conclusions through analyzing sensed data. Furthermore, finishing sensing task faster will benefit energy saving, which is critical in system design of wireless sensor networks. To minimize the execution time (makespan) of a given task, an optimal task scheduling algorithm (OTSA-WSN) in a clustered wireless sensor network is proposed based on divisible load theory. The algorithm consists of two phases: intra-cluster task scheduling and inter-cluster task scheduling. Intra-cluster task scheduling deals with allocating different fractions of sensing tasks among sensor nodes in each cluster; inter-cluster task scheduling involves the assignment of sensing tasks among all clusters in multiple rounds to improve overlap of communication with computation. OTSA-WSN builds from eliminating transmission collisions and idle gaps between two successive data transmissions. By removing performance degradation caused by communication interference and idle, the reduced finish time and improved network resource utilization can be achieved. With the proposed algorithm, the optimal number of rounds and the most reasonable load allocation ratio on each node could be derived. Finally, simulation results are presented to demonstrate the impacts of different network parameters such as the number of clusters, computation/communication latency, and measurement/communication speed, on the number of rounds, makespan and energy consumption.


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How to Cite
DAI, Liang; CHANG, Yilin; SHEN, Zhong. An Optimal Task Scheduling Algorithm in Wireless Sensor Networks. INTERNATIONAL JOURNAL OF COMPUTERS COMMUNICATIONS & CONTROL, [S.l.], v. 6, n. 1, p. 101-112, mar. 2011. ISSN 1841-9844. Available at: <>. Date accessed: 01 oct. 2020. doi:


wireless sensor networks; divisible load theory; multi-round task scheduling