Deploying a Low-Cost Wi-Fi-Based Vehicular Ad Hoc Network in a Shopping Mall Parking Lot: An Empirical Study
Vehicular ad hoc networks (VANETs) have the potential to reduce car accidents by facilitating connectivity and warning message exchange between vehicles, both on roads and in parking lots. This research endeavored to accomplish three primary goals: conducting a field measurement in the parking lot of a large shopping mall in Auckland, developing an OPNET-based simulation model to analyze and validate the system performance, and analyzing the compatibility between five selected radio propagation models (Free-space, Shadowing Path-loss, Egli, Hata, and COST231). These models were selected based on their popularity and relevance to our study. We found that the “Free Space” model outperforms in the scenario in which measurements were conducted from the Level-1 car park to the Roadside. The received signal strengths in the parking lot ranged from -45 dBm to -92 dBm. This research also examines the coverage distance for the successful transmission of warning messages, achieving up to 57 m, 17.5 m, 9.4 m, and 68 m at parking levels 1, 2, 3, and the roadside, respectively. Research findings reveal that a low-costWi-Fi-based VANET system can be utilized to prevent car accidents in parking lots. Finally, we provide guidelines for network planners to deployWi-Fi-based VANET systems in parking lots.