Tsinghua Science and Technology


Channel State Information (CSI), sensorless sensing, WiFi, indoor localization, device-free human detection, activity recognition, wireless networks, ubiquitous computing


Can WiFi signals be used for sensing purpose? The growing PHY layer capabilities of WiFi has made it possible to reuse WiFi signals for both communication and sensing. Sensing via WiFi would enable remote sensing without wearable sensors, simultaneous perception and data transmission without extra communication infrastructure, and contactless sensing in privacy-preserving mode. Due to the popularity of WiFi devices and the ubiquitous deployment of WiFi networks, WiFi-based sensing networks, if fully connected, would potentially rank as one of the world's largest wireless sensor networks. Yet the concept of wireless and sensorless sensing is not the simple combination of WiFi and radar. It seeks breakthroughs from dedicated radar systems, and aims to balance between low cost and high accuracy, to meet the rising demand for pervasive environment perception in everyday life. Despite increasing research interest, wireless sensing is still in its infancy. Through introductions on basic principles and working prototypes, we review the feasibilities and limitations of wireless, sensorless, and contactless sensing via WiFi. We envision this article as a brief primer on wireless sensing for interested readers to explore this open and largely unexplored field and create next-generation wireless and mobile computing applications.


Tsinghua University Press