An effective transmission strategy plays a vital role in maximizing the lifetime of wireless sensor networks (WSNs). To fulfll such a maximization aim, an optimal-distance-based transmission strategy is put forward on the basis of ant colony optimization (ACO). First, by introducing two notions, most energy-effcient distance and most energy-balanced distance, a local optimal-distance achievement mechanism is presented not only for a high energy effciency, but also a good energy balancing in WSNs. Furthermore, by working out a network lifetime evaluation method, a global optimal-distance acquirement scheme is developed to achieve energy depletion minimization for sensor nodes with maximal energy consumption throughout the network. Finally, it is proved by simulations that our endings signifcantly outperform the state-of-the-art solutions.
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