The most common way for accessing healthcare and monitoring physiological signals is based on commercial devices. Most of them are, in general, expensive, highly invasive, and require sophisticated infrastructure for operating. Nowadays, wearable devices (WD) offer an attractive technology for circumventing the limitations of classic medical devices. The design of WD, however, remains a challenging task to reach high-performance, reliability, and to be ergonomic. In this work, we develop, to the best of our knowledge, a novel WD with two main highlights. (i) Our device is based on a low-power 32-bit microcontroller, embedding a Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) module for wireless data streaming with a mobile application for signal monitoring and recording, alongside a warning notification system. (ii) The proposed WD has a modular and flexible design, such that the user can increase the number of sensors by sharing the acquisition and processing system, thus reducing the hardware requirements and exhibiting a minimally invasive arrangement. For all the WD stages, we show their design methodology, the tests for characterizing their performance, and the results obtained from a case of study. For this latter, we consider two sensor prototypes for measuring the corporal temperature with a passive sensor, as well as the breath and heart rates via photoplethysmography signals. Results show that our WD is a cost-effective alternative and a promising tool for healthcare monitoring, as it operates in agreement with physiological levels with high-reliability.
Low-Energy and Modular Wearable Device for Wireless Measurement of Physiological Signals
Published: 14 November 2020 by MDPI in 7th International Electronic Conference on Sensors and Applications session Wearable Sensors
Keywords: wereable devices, biosensors, flexible electroncis, wireless