Fireflies exhibit a fascinating phenomenon of spontaneous synchronization that occurs in nature: at dawn, they gather on trees and synchronize progressively without relying on a central entity. The present chapter reviews this process by looking at experiments that were made on fireflies and the mathematical model of Mirollo and Strogatz, which provides key rules to obtaining a synchronized network in a decentralized manner. In this article challenges related to the implementation in ad hoc networks are addressed. In particular, the effects of transmission delays and the constraint that a node cannot receive and transmit at the same time are studied. A novel delay tolerant synchronization scheme, derived from the original firefly synchronization principle is presented. Simulation results show that an accuracy limited only by propagation delays is retained. © 2007 Springer-Verlag Berlin Heidelberg.
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