Ultra-low power radio drives continuous medical monitoring with low-cost batteries

July 05, 2012 // By Reghu Rajan
The advent of wireless personal area networks (WPANs) and wireless body area networks (WBANs) has created the need for sensing and monitoring solutions that can support continuous data streaming with extremely low power consumption.

Today's wearable medical systems are targeted at applications including on-site and remote patient monitoring, mobility therapies and the management of diseases such as sleep apnea, and are used in environments where frequent battery replacement would be difficult and expensive. While solutions for these short-range applications previously required AA or AAA batteries, they can now be powered by a new generation of micropower batteries – as long as power efficiency is optimized. Now, the advent of ultra-low-power short-range radio transceivers is enabling low-cost button cell or small lithium ion batteries to support continuous data streaming in WPANs and WBANs for up to two weeks before replacement.

Read the full article on page 30 of our July/August digital edition.