Body Area Networks

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Body Area Networks

Arif Onder ISIKMAN∗ , Loris Cazalon† , Feiquan Chen‡ , Peng Li§ Email:, † Email:, ‡ Email:, § Email: Chalmers University of Technology, SE-412 96, Gothenburg, Sweden

Abstract—Recent technologies in electronics allow to build wireless sensor networks in on or around the human body. Body Area Networks (BAN, is also called Body Sensor Networks) is not only used in medical applications but also has non-medical applications areas such as entertainment, military. This paper reviews the main features of BAN. It also covers the requirements for BAN infrastructure by giving an example of an existing application. We propose a hybrid method to improve existing BAN infrastructure as we call Intelligent Body Sensor Networks (IBSN). We also introduce the new IEEE 802.15.6 standard and point the similarities and differences with existing standards. In addition, we show the numerical results for a lifetime optimized body sensor network requiring a transmission-free area. Our discussion states the trade-off between reliability vs security for such kind of BAN. Index Terms—body area networks, intelligent hybrid body sensor networks, IEEE 802.15.6, lifetime optimization

between the new standard and existing wireless communication standards. Section IV continues with simulation results of the lifetime maximized sensor network. Finally, Section V concludes our work. II. O NE APPLICATION OF BAN: MONITORING Body Area Networks (BAN) Technology has a lot of applications. The main applications are used in the medical domain but this technology will not be restricted only to the medical applications, non-medical applications are also predicted. Applications can be organized into three categories [2]: Healthcare sensor networks applications: BAN have been widely used at the medical healthcare field. It makes physiological monitoring of patient much easier, cheaper and less binding for the patients. Entertainment: Multimedia and gaming applications, video streaming, data file transfer, sports, 3D video is one of the possible . Assistance to people with disabilities: The BAN can also help the people with disabilities, such as muscle tension monitor, blind, speech disability and artificial hands. A. Specific requirements for the application Medical monitoring applications have specific hardware and network requirements [3] to insure their functions and to solve encountered problems. Network requirements can be listed as follows: • Range: BAN allow the sensors in on or around the same body to communicate with each other, so 2-5 meters range is enough. • Interference: Between the transmissions of different sensors from the same application and also from the different applications (because it would be possible to have a lot of sensors on the same body) and with other sources (people close to each other can also have their own BAN), interference should be suppressed as much as possible to satisfy reliable wireless communication. • Network density: With the diversification of BAN applications, people should be able to have sensors for different applications and different body area networks on them. BAN standard allows 2-4 networks per m2 . • Sensors number per network: Monitoring applications need a lot of sensors or actuators on the same body area network. BAN standardization group expects a maximum of 256 devices per network.

I. I NTRODUCTION Body area networks (BAN), is also called Body Sensor Networks (BSN) is becoming more and more important for the whole society nowadays. Modern health care related technologies and many other fields’ key technologies relay on it. BAN has many applications. One of them, medical monitoring applications, have the specific hardware and network requirements to insure their functions and to solve encountered problems. Sensor, battery, and processor have built up BAN. The security of BAN...
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