Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Development of BANS Expected to Accelerate

For those not in the "know," BANs is an acronym for Body Area Network.  It is a technology to capture and transmit body-related telemetry.  The National Institute of Standards and Technology (NIST) has granted the Center for Wireless Information Network Studies at Worcester Polytechnic Institute (WPI) Worcester, MA, $1.2 million over three years to advance BANs technology.  The research will focus on the propagation of radio waves around and through the human body. This could have real potential for the development of robust communications standards to enable medical devices to send and receive data and instructions over wireless networks.  This research is something to watch.


Receiving a NIST grant is a significant achievement.  I was the Principal Investigator on a $2 million, two year grant to Rosetta-Wireless.  The NIST vetting process is arduous, but the grants generally fall into the seven figure range over two to three years.  I know that wireless data communication is an important area of interest to NIST particularly as it relates to medical applications, more specifically into the areas of wireless medical monitoring and remote programming.  I know that NIST has continued hopes for a medical application of the technology that my company, my research and development team created.

For those who have an interest in BANs, one of the technical problems is getting the data collected by BANs back to a location where medical professionals can review and evaluate it. And, if need be, make changes remotely in the operation of the implanted medical system (e. g., pacemaker, ICD, insulin pump, etc.).  If you review some of my earlier posts, you'll note that I have described methods to transport data and instructions over the commercial wireless network from and to a patient's implanted medical device. 

I shall continue to bring to light any further developments in BANs.

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