nwc-003 / Biometric Measurement Station (medical equipment)

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Getting started

The project started within the context of personal interest, raspberry pi and some crazy people.

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The first experiments of the not yet defined project were made with a infrared thermopile sensor TMP006 from Texas Instruments dubbed as an one pixel thermometer and a self constructed power transistor based black body test stand.

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Later on an improved version with modified audio amplifier and a peltier element was used to test the responsiveness of the sensor.

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The preliminary results were better than a normal temperature sensor with less lag and you could even try to measure the resting heartbeat with some Fourier Transformation but the person under test would have to be very calm and be patient for about 5 minutes or else the result would would be falsified.

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At least if everything would fail you could still use the test platform also as a cooling device for some drink in hot summers.

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The startup idea Star

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In collaboration with a student of the Lean Startup Course at the Faculty of Computer Science was born the idea to make something more serious out of it. With the help of biometric development kit from Cooking Hacks we started to develop an business idea and we tried to find our target customers.

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In our case we targeted so called prosumers that do not care about professional certifications. In the environment of home training or gyms not all sensors could be used since they would be either impractical or the simply would not produce live data. Sadly there exist not so much wireless sensors but this is what we can get so far with readily available common of the shelf technology.

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The measurement platform was slightly modified to support mobile operation with rechargeable AA batteries and to protect the Raspberry Pi GPIOs from lethal damage through ESD discharge. With 8 cells and the new Raspberry Pi B+ an on time up to about 10 hours could be achieved.

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A simple prototype app has been developed to showcase the working station. Future work would be to asses the measurements and to implement a personal trainer suggestion system.

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Let’s see what can be done in future.

 

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