Worst Case Age of Information in Wireless Sensor Networks

Freshness of status update packets is essential for enabling a wide range of applications in wireless sensor networks (WSNs). Accordingly, we consider a WSN where sensors communicate status updates to a destination by contending for the channel access based on a carrier sense multiple access (CSMA) method. We analyze the worst case average age of information (AoI) and average peak AoI from the view of one sensor in a system where all the other sensors have a saturated queue. Numerical results illustrate the importance of optimizing the contention window size and the packet arrival rate to maximize the information freshness.