TSCH and 6TiSCH for Contiki: Challenges, Design and Evaluation

Simon Duquennoy, Atis Elsts, Beshr Al Nahas, George Oikonomou

Research output: Chapter in Book/Report/Conference proceedingConference Contribution (Conference Proceeding)

83 Citations (Scopus)
659 Downloads (Pure)


Synchronized communication has recently emerged as a prime option for low-power critical applications. Solutions such as Glossy or Time Slotted Channel Hopping (TSCH) have demonstrated end-to-end reliability upwards of 99.99%. In this context, the IETF Working Group 6TiSCH is currently standardizing the mechanisms to use TSCH in low-power IPv6 scenarios. This paper identifies a number of challenges when it comes to implementing the 6TiSCH stack. It shows how these challenges can be addressed with practical solutions for locking, queuing, scheduling and other aspects. With this implementation as an enabler, we present an experimental validation and comparison with state-of-the-art MAC protocols. We conduct fine-grained energy profiling, showing the impact of link-layer security on packet transmission. We evaluate distributed time synchronization in a 340-node testbed, and demonstrate that tight synchronization (hundreds of microseconds) can be achieved at very low cost (0.3% duty cycle, 0.008% channel utilization). We finally compare TSCH against traditional MAC layers: low-power listening (LPL) and CSMA, in terms of reliability, latency and energy. We show that with proper scheduling, TSCH achieves by far the highest reliability, and outperforms LPL in both energy and latency.
Original languageEnglish
Title of host publication2017 13th International Conference on Distributed Computing in Sensor Systems (DCOSS 2017)
Subtitle of host publicationProceedings of a meeting held 5-7 June 2017, Ottawa, Ontario, Canada
PublisherInstitute of Electrical and Electronics Engineers (IEEE)
Number of pages8
ISBN (Electronic)9781538639917
ISBN (Print)9781538639924
Publication statusPublished - Apr 2018
Event13th International Conference on Distributed Computing in Sensor Systems - Ottawa, Canada
Duration: 6 May 2017 → …

Publication series

ISSN (Print)2325-2944


Conference13th International Conference on Distributed Computing in Sensor Systems
Abbreviated titleDCOSS 17
Period6/05/17 → …

Structured keywords

  • Digital Health


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