The concept of the "sensor web" is a type of sensor network that is especially well suited for environmental monitoring. The phrase the "sensor web" is also associated with a sensing system which heavily utilizes the World Wide Web. OGC's Sensor Web Enablement (SWE) framework defines a suite of web service interfaces and communication protocols abstracting from the heterogeneity of sensor (network) communication. (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sensor_web)
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New Generation Sensor Web Enablement, Arne Bröring, Johannes Echterhoff, Simon Jirka, Ingo Simonis, Thomas Everding, Christoph Stasch, Steve Liang, Rob Lemmens Sensors 2011, Volume 11, Number 3, 2652-2699 open access publication. A good paper describing all relevant standards, their challenges, and what was changed to work towards a "Sensor Web 2.0".