For the link budget, I will need the power consumption of a typical wireless sensor node. Especially those of ultra-low power device, do you guys know how much power does such typical device consume?

  • \$\begingroup\$ There's a lot of variables, you'll need to be more specific. Devices can sleep in the uW range. If a sensor doesn't need to send but a bit of a data in a day, it could easily remain on average in the uW range. Otherwise, you'll need to determine what technology you want to use and what bit-rate, and how often it will sleep, etc. \$\endgroup\$
    – horta
    Commented May 15, 2014 at 4:14
  • \$\begingroup\$ @horta, sorry for this. I want to be specific, but I don't even know the requirement myself. Can you just give the power consumption of a typical size wireless sensor node that operate at a typical interval? \$\endgroup\$
    – kuku
    Commented May 15, 2014 at 4:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ I mean, I gave you a starting point. I would say uW's for a very minimal sensor transmitting to a base station. You can go up from there to pretty much whatever you want. Nearer to the higher end, I'd say 50 mA at 5V so 250mW. That high number is very rough though. The range I just gave you can be the difference between years of battery life and minutes. \$\endgroup\$
    – horta
    Commented May 15, 2014 at 4:26
  • 3
    \$\begingroup\$ Link budget has got nothing to do with the power consumption of a sensor node. \$\endgroup\$
    – Andy aka
    Commented May 15, 2014 at 7:20
  • \$\begingroup\$ As Andy said - the link budget does not relate at all to the actual power consumption of the node. It's only concerned with power radiated by the device. Your actual power consumption will depend on the active and idle power consumption figures and the duty cycle of the device. \$\endgroup\$ Commented Oct 7, 2014 at 18:38

1 Answer 1


In communications, Link budget analysis is used for evaluating the performance of any wireless data link.Basically the first step in link budget analysis is determining the required signal strength at the receiver in terms of Eb/No in dB, for which a specified level of reliability in terms of BER is achieved.Once the receiver's sensitivity is computed, then its necessary to compute the transmit power required for the modem to operate reliably. This is just a brief, in detail lot of other factors must be considered such as the channel capacity, receiver noise floor, propagation loss etc, the transmit power can be as low of -24 dBm and the receivers sensitivity can be -100 dBm depending on the required SNR. The Link below gives a good insight on how to perform link budget analysis http://www.sss-mag.com/pdf/an9804.pdf


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