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Android app offers personal "tricorder" health monitor

Posted: 08 Oct 2010 ?? ?Print Version ?Bookmark and Share

Keywords:Android? health monitor? ECG? body area network? BAN?

Android smartphones can now monitor a person's health using a wireless electrocardiogram sensor across a wireless body area network (BAN), somewhat similar to the tricorder in "Star Trek."

Belgium's Interuniversity Microelectronics Center (IMEC), the Holst Center, and TASS software professionals collaborated on an Android application that monitors cardiac performance, brain activity, muscle activity and other health indicators.

IMEC and the Holst Center developed the "Human++ BAN sensor nodes" that wirelessly transmit the bio-signals to the Android phone. The phone collates, stores and processes the data and sends it over the Internet to a physician, hospital and other authorized personnel.

IMEC used an SDIO interface that comes standard on Android mobile phones for the low-power interface, allowing all Android features, such as GPS, to be integrated with the system. The device's low power requirements allow long-term monitoring.

Other key features are portability to other Linux-based devices, thresholds on measured parameters, and automatic sending of alerts when the thresholds are breached.

IMEC showcased the technology at the Wireless Health Conference in San Diego.

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