Drivers know whether or not their cars are running properly by observing the dashboard. Physicians can check vital parameters such as the pulse even when their patients are at home. The data can be recorded with the wireless monitoring device VitaSENS.
The modern automobile relies on sensors to monitor the vehicle’s operating condition. Whether it’s the speed, RPM, open doors, oil pressure, coolant temperature or fuel level, the driver constantly receives information about the “health” and well-being of his car. Should he be unfortunate enough to land in the hospital himself, it is his own vital parameters that the attending physicians will need to check. Regularly measuring and monitoring vital signs like pulse, temperature or blood oxygen content can also be important in rehabilitation clinics, as part of post-therapy treatment at home, or during professional sports activities.
It was to meet this need that Fraunhofer researchers introduced the multi-sensory Body Area Network (BAN) four years ago. In the meantime, they have integrated a whole series of sensors in a single device and christened it VitaSENS. Optical sensors attached to the earlobe, finger or arm measure the blood oxygen saturation, heart rate and arterial pulse curve – the latter being the pulse wave generated by the heart muscle each time it contracts.