Radio frequency identification (RFID) is a technology for automated identification of objects and people. RFID technology is expected to find extensive use in applications related to the Internet of Things, and in particular applications of Internet of Battlefield Things. Of particular interest are passive RFID tags due to a number of their salient advantages. Such tags, lacking energy sources of their own, use backscattering of the power of an RF source (a reader) to communicate. Recently, passive RFID tag-to-tag (T2T) communication has been demonstrated, via which tags can directly communicate with each other and share information. This opens the possibility of building a Network of Tags (NeTa), in which the passive tags communicate among themselves to perform data processing functions. Among possible applications of NeTa are monitoring services in hard-to-reach locations. As an essential step toward implementation of NeTa, we consider a novel multi-hop network architecture; in particular, with the proposed novel turbo backscattering operation, inter-tag distances can be significantly increased. Due to the interference among tags’ transmissions, one of the main technical challenges of implementing such the NeTa architecture is the routing protocol design. In this paper, we introduce a design of a routing protocol, which is based onmore »
Backscatter Communications with Passive Receivers: From Fundamentals to Applications
The principle of backscattering has the potential to enable a full realization of the Internet of Things. This paradigm subsumes massively deployed things that have the capability to communicate directly with each other. Based on the types of excitation and receivers, we discriminate four types of backscattering systems: (i) Dedicated Exciter Active Receiver systems, (ii) Ambient Exciter Active Receiver systems, (iii) Dedicated Exciter Passive Receiver systems, and (iv) Ambient Exciter Passive Receiver systems. In this paper, we present an overview of bacskscattering systems with passive receivers which form the foundation for Backscattering Tag-to-Tag Networks (BTTNs). This is a technology that allows tiny batteryless RF tags attached to various objects to communicate directly with each other and to perform RF-based sensing of the communication link. We present an overview of recent innovations in hardware architectures for backscatter modulation, passive demodulation, and energy harvesting that overcome design challenges for passive tag-to-tag communication. We further describe the challenges in scaling up the architecture from a single link to a distributed network. We provide some examples of application scenarios enabled by BTTNs involving object-to-object communication and inter-object or human-object dynamic interactions. Finally, we discuss key challenges in present-day BTTN technology and future research directions.
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