Networking Protocols, experimentation, at-sea trials. We are involved in several research activities for underwater networking. There, our focus is centered around the design of networking protocol and interfaces with commercial and prototype undersea devices. Various experimental activities are also on the way.


Underwater networking poses serious challenges to network designers, as no straightforward translation exists between protocols for the terrestrial wireless radio environment and their underwater counterparts. The main reason behind this is the different nature of the underwater acoustic channel: long propagation delays (the average propagation speed of an acoustic wave is about 1500 m/s underwater, nearly 200’000 times smaller than radio waves in the air), strong multipath effects, long-term channel variations, and last but not least a much smaller bandwidth available (due to the use of acoustic frequencies, i.e., in the tens of kHz range), which turns into lower transmit bit rates. While radio and optical waves may also be an option for underwater communications, acoustic waves still foster a lot of interest, as they are currently the only means to reach distances longer than a few hundred meters. With the proper configuration of transmission hardware parameters, acoustic waves can travel up to tens of kilometers, making long range communication feasible, albeit at a possibly very low bit rate.

Channel modeling

As there is no widely agreed upon model for the channel, we seek new models that are sufficiently compact yet simple enough to be plugged into a network simulator. This activity is carried out in cooperation with institutions and research centers that can provide real data from undersea measurement campaigns. 

Underwater acoustic channel can be simulate using ray-tracer as well. We develop the WOSS Framework to obtain realistic acustic channel realization based on ray-tracer to be used in underwater network simulators.

MAC protocol design and evaluation

We are currently analyzing a number of MAC solutions by means of simulations and stochastic models, in order to discover which features make one protocol perform better than others, with the final objective to create a novel protocol encompassing the best behaviors seen in other approaches.

Routing and broadcasting

Multihop underwater networks will require delay-tolerant routing protocols, that work well in the presence of very long propagation delays. We are currently analyzing the relevant routing tradeoffs that allow, e.g., to save energy by choosing wisely which nodes will relay messages. We are also designing efficient broadcasting techniques based on Hybrid ARQ.


We collaborate with research institutions to define joint sea trial activities which allow for network protocol evaluation as well as channel characterization; this feeds novel insight and provides directions to all above tasks.


Filippo Campagnaro, Alberto Signori, Michele ZorziWireless Remote Control for Underwater VehiclesJournal of Marine Science and Engineering
Filippo Campagnaro, Davide Tronchin, Alberto Signori, Roberto Petroccia, Konstantinos Pelekanakis, Pietro Paglierani, Joāo Alves, Michele ZorziReplay-Attack Countermeasures for Underwater Acoustic NetworksMTS/IEEE Global Oceans 2020
Cosmin Delea, Emanuele Coccolo, Salvador Fernandez Covarrubias, Filippo Campagnaro, Federico Favaro, Roberto Francescon, Vincent Schneider, Johannes Oeffner, Michele ZorziCommunication Infrastructure and Cloud Computing in Robotic Vessel as-a-Service ApplicationMTS/IEEE Global Oceans 2020
Alberto Signori, Filippo Campagnaro, Kim-Fabian Wachlin, Ivor Nissen, Michele ZorziOn the Use of Conversation Detection to Improve the Security of Underwater Acoustic NetworksMTS/IEEE Global Oceans 2020
Federico Mason, Federico Chiariotti, Filippo Campagnaro, Andrea Zanella, Michele ZorziLow-cost AUV Swarm Localization Through Multimodal Underwater Acoustic NetworksMTS/IEEE Global Oceans 2020
Tommaso Zugno, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele ZorziControlling in real-time an ASV-carried ROV for quay wall and ship hull inspection through wireless links in harbor environmentsMTS/IEEE Global Oceans 2020
Davide Magrin, Alberto Signori, Davide Tronchin, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele ZorziCollaboration of LoRaWAN and Underwater Acoustic Communications in Sensor Data Collection ApplicationsMTS/IEEE Global Oceans 2020
Federico Chiariotti, Alberto Signori, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele ZorziUnderwater Jamming Attacks as Incomplete Information GamesIEEE INFOCOM Workshop WCNEE 2020
Alberto Signori, Federico Chiariotti, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele ZorziA Game-Theoretic and Experimental Analysis of Energy-Depleting Underwater Jamming AttacksIEEE Internet of Things Journal
Paolo Casari, Filippo Campagnaro, Elizaveta Dubrovinskaya, Roberto Francescon, Amir Dagan, Shlomo Dahan, Michele Zorzi, Roee DiamantASUNA: A Topology Dataset for Underwater Network EmulationIEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering
Alberto Signori, Filippo Campagnaro, Fabian Steinmetz, Bernd-Christian Renner, Michele ZorziData Gathering from a Multimodal Dense Underwater Acoustic Sensor Network Deployed in Shallow Fresh Water ScenariosJournal of Sensor and Actuator Networks
Alberto Signori, Chiara Pielli, Federico Chiariotti, Marco Giordani, Filippo Campagnaro, Nicola Laurenti, Michele ZorziJamming the Underwater: a Game-Theoretic Analysis
of Energy-Depleting Jamming Attacks
ACM WUWNet 2019
Filippo Campagnaro, Fabian Steinmetz, Alberto Signori, Davide Zordan, Bernd-Christian Renner, Michele ZorziData Collection in Shallow Fresh Water Scenarios with Low-Cost Underwater Acoustic ModemsUACE 2019
Davide Zordan, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele ZorziOn the feasibility of an Anti-grounding Service
with Autonomous Surface Vessels
MTS/IEEE Oceans19 Marseille
Alberto Signori, Filippo Campagnaro, Davide Zordan, Federico Favaro, Michele ZorziUnderwater Acoustic Sensors Data Collection in the Robotic Vessels as-a-Service ProjectMTS/IEEE Oceans19 Marseille
Filippo Campagnaro, Paolo Casari, Michele Zorzi, Roee Diamant Optimal Transmission Scheduling in Small Multimodal Underwater NetworksIEEE Wireless Communication Letter 2018
Emanuele Coccolo, Filippo Campagnaro Alberto Signori, Federico Favaro, Michele ZorziImplementation of AUV and Ship Noise for Link Quality Evaluation in the DESERT UnderwaterACM WUWNet 2018
Alberto Signori, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele ZorziModeling the Performance of Optical Modems in the DESERT Underwater Network SimulatorIEEE Ucomms 2018
Filippo Campagnaro, Roberto Francescon, Davide Tronchin, Michele ZorziOn the Feasibility of Video Streaming through Underwater Acoustic Links IEEE Ucomms 2018
William Rizzo, Alberto Signori, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele ZorziAUVs Telemetry Range Extension through a Multimodal Underwater Acoustic Network MTS/IEEE Oceans18 Charleston
Alberto Signori, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele ZorziMulti-Hop Range Extension of a Wireless Remote Control for Underwater Vehicles MTS/IEEE Oceans18 Kobe
Roee Diamant, Paolo Casari, Filippo Campagnaro, Oleksiy Kebkal, Veronika Kebkal, Michele ZorziFair and Throughput-Optimal Routing in Multimodal Underwater NetworksIEEE Transaction on Wireless Communications
Roee Diamant, Roberto Francescon, Michele ZorziTED: A Topology Discovery Algorithm for Underwater Acoustic NetworksIEEE Journal of Oceanic Engineering
Roee Diamant, Paolo Casari, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele ZorziRouting in Multi-Modal Underwater Networks: a Throughput-optimal ApproachIEEE INFOCOM 2017
Roee Diamant, Filippo Campagnaro, Michele De Filippo De Grazia, Paolo Casari, Alberto Testolin, Violeta Sanjuan Calzado, Michele ZorziOn the Relationship between the Underwater Acoustic and Optical ChannelsIEEE Transaction on Wireless Communications

Previous works can be found at this link

DESERT underwater simulator

DESERT Underwater is a complete set of public C++ libraries that extend the NS-MIRACLE simulator to support the design and implementation of underwater network protocols.

DESERT simulator

WOSS framework

WOSS is a multi-threaded C++ framework that permits the integration of any existing underwater channel simulator that expects environmental data as input and provides as output a channel realization. Currently, WOSS integrates the Bellhop ray-tracing program. 

WOSS framework

Related projects


  • The Hatter Department of Marine Technologies, University of Haifa, Israel
  • Evologics GmbH, Germany
  • NATO Centre for Maritime Research and Experimentation (CMRE)
  • Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Woods Hole, MA, USA
  • Naval Postgraduate School, Monterey, CA, USA
  • Italian Ministry of Defense
  • University of Twente, Enschede, The Nederlands
  • University of Rome “La Sapienza”

Team Members

  • Michele Zorzi
  • Filippo Campagnaro
  • Emanuele Coccolo
  • Roberto Francescon
  • Alberto Signori
  • Davide Tronchin
  • Federico Favaro
  • Federico Guerra