West Virginia University’s Mohammad Fanaei, a doctoral candidate in electrical engineering, earned a National Science Foundation fellowship to conduct research this summer in Australia.

Fanaei will be working in the Center of Excellence in Telecommunications at the University of Sydney, in June and August. He will be under the supervision of Abbas Jamalipour, leader of the Wireless Networking Group.

Fanaei’s research is focused on wireless communication systems, which have applications including border protection, smart homes and remote habitat monitoring.

“My main research interest is in the field of distributed detection and estimation in wireless sensor networks,” Fanaei said. “Suppose you want to automatically detect and locate any car that passes the border without proper inspection. You can have a network of randomly distributed magnetometers as your sensors that detect the existence and estimate the location of any metallic object in their surroundings. The sensors process their observations locally and send the processed data to a central entity for further processing.

“The questions that I’m working on include determining the best local processing scheme for sensors and the best way for the central entity to combine all local data in order to create more reliable location estimation.”

Fanaei’s research will consider factors such as noise in the sensor observations, the total energy consumed by the sensors during communication and the total traffic in the channel.

Fanaei is also currently involved in another NSF-funded project that aims to provide the communications research community with a web-based distributed processing framework.

“Most simulations in the field of communications theory are very computationally intensive,” explained Fanaei. “These types of simulations could take weeks to be completed on a stand-alone desktop computer.”

Under the direction of Matthew C. Valenti, WVU professor of computer science and electrical engineering, Fanaei and other members of the Wireless Communications Research Laboratory have developed a web-based framework that allows researchers to describe the simulations they want to run.

“We developed a scheduler that will automatically divide the simulations into smaller pieces and run them on our computer,” Fanaei said. “This will allow the researchers to receive their results in a matter of hours, instead of weeks.”
Fanaei hopes to eventually teach and conduct research in higher education where he can apply his knowledge to inspire a passion for communication systems in his students.



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CONTACT: Mary C. Dillon
304-293-4086; mary.dillon@mail.wvu.edu