On the Performance of LoRa Empowered Communication for Wireless Body Area Networks

IEEE OPEN JOURNAL OF THE COMMUNICATIONS SOCIETY(2024)

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Abstract
To remotely monitor the physiological status of the human body, long range (LoRa) communication has been considered as an eminently suitable candidate for wireless body area networks (WBANs). Typically, a Rayleigh-lognormal fading channel is encountered by the LoRa links of the WBAN. In this context, we characterize the performance of the LoRa system in WBAN scenarios with an emphasis on the physical (PHY) layer and medium access control (MAC) layer in the face of Rayleigh-lognormal fading channels and the same spreading factor interference. Specifically, closed-form approximate bit error probability (BEP) expressions are derived for the LoRa system. The results show that increasing the spreading factor (SF) and reducing the interference efficiently mitigate the shadowing effects. Moreover, in the quest for the most suitable MAC protocol for LoRa based WBANs, three MAC protocols are critically appraised, namely the pure ALOHA, slotted ALOHA, and carrier-sense multiple access. The coverage probability, energy efficiency, throughput, and system delay of the three MAC protocols are analyzed in Rayleigh-lognormal fading channel. Furthermore, the performance of the equal-interval-based and equal-area-based schemes is analyzed to guide the choice of the SF. Our simulation results confirm the accuracy of the mathematical analysis, and provide some useful insights for the future design of LoRa based WBANs on how to achieve the desired performance requirements for different conditions (i.e., different network radii and average numbers of end-devices) by using different SF allocation schemes and MAC protocols.
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Key words
Wireless body area network,LoRa communication,performance analysis,Rayleigh-lognormal fading channel
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