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In this paper, we consider the distributed parameter estimation in wireless sensor networks where a total bit rate constraint is imposed. We study the optimal tradeoff between the number of active sensors and the quantization bit rate for each active sensor to minimize the estimation mean-square error (MSE). To facilitate the solution, we first introduce a concept of equivalent 1-bit MSE function. Next, we present an optimal distributed estimation algorithm for homogeneous sensor networks baseddoi:10.1109/tsp.2006.890823 fatcat:jokyfuxo6fhrpl6jkqp5ugsuhe