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IT and IEETA build a radar that captures our breathing from a distance

by IT on 17-07-2017
Researchers from IT in Aveiro and the Instituto de Engenharia Electrónica e Telemática of Aveiro (IEETA) have developed a radar that is able to register the human respiratory rate from a distance, without the need of any mechanical contact. The prototype is called Bio-Radar.

But how does the Bio-Radar work? By determining distances through the reflection of radio signals, the Bio-Radar can detect small movements in the chest that are the result of inspiration and expiration and, from there, it records the respiratory rhythm.

Already effective in registering the respiratory rate, the researchers´ next goal for Bio-Radar is that it´ll also be capable of measuring the heart rate. According to the researchers´ explanation, "The periods of systole and diastole of the heart create small movements in the chest that can be measured by the system and, from there, registering the cardiac rhythm”.

Given its non-invasive characteristics, there can be many applications to the Bio-Radar. “It can be used in hospital settings for evaluating a patients´ health state without the use of contact” and even “in cars to measure the level of stress or relaxation of a driver or even to detect if the driver is close to falling asleep at the wheel”, said the research team. Additionally, since it uses radio waves, the equipment can be placed behind everyday objects without impairing its effectiveness to obtain bio signals.

Effective, fast and convenient, for both patients and physicians, the Bio-Radar promises to turn every other method currently used for measuring the respiratory rate into something of the past.