BIENESMART –Research and development of smart textiles to monitor physiological parameters to improve a user’s wellbeing
As technology advances public health services improve, lengthening life expectancy by early diagnoses and effective treatments. Spain’s demographic trend projects a scenario in which there will be more and more elderly people and the population pyramid of recent years shows an ageing population. Spain has the second highest life expectancy of the OECD, coupled with an increasingly lower birth rate. In fact, birth rates in the first quarter of 2018 were the lowest since records began in 1941.
This indicates that personal health care management has gone from being a fashion to a necessity. Adopting healthy lifestyles to improve our overall health is now of concern to everyone. The majority of the population is worried and aware that improving certain aspects of our lives helps improve our welfare. This requires objective, simple and transparent monitoring of certain aspects of our behaviour.
This research project aims to improve health control by integrating sensors capable of collecting information on physiological and biological parameters into everyday garments. Thanks to technological advances, the use of smart textiles and wearables for remote, continuous monitoring is now possible. The embedded technologies can be incorporated into any part of clothing and can interact with the user to control variable parameters.
The stated goal of the project is the development of textile solutions that monitor vital signs and physiological and biological parameters for the improvement of the well-being of the wearer.
To achieve the objectives, two lines of research are proposed:
– Research on the development of garments that integrate sensors capable of monitoring physiological parameters. The intention is to enable the collection of data and parameterise muscle activity, oxygen saturation, ECG and respiratory rhythm, among others.
– Research on the development of garments that integrate biosensors capable of monitoring biological parameters. The biosensors are small electrodes integrated into plastics or textile fibres that can be attached to the skin and which can be accessed remotely from a mobile phone through Bluetooth. By means of electrochemical biosensors and electrodes, the wearer’s perspiration levels can be measured to control levels of biomarkers such as sodium, PH, glucose and protein levels.
The use of new health care technologies offers many advantages, such as enabling early diagnosis, encouraging prevention rather than treatment and reducing the staffing costs associated with the control and analysis of data. In addition, the user can modify their habits immediately as they receive information of their vital signs.
Our modern society is becoming more health conscious and we can now use technology to collect data from users that help to make decisions to improve health and well-being. In this project, sensors capable of collecting data on vital signs and physiological / biological variables will be researched to obtain information on daily habits.
The expected results are the development of textile garments with embedded sensors that simplify the data collection of certain variables, and allow the constant monitoring of physical activities. All the data collected by the sensors will be sent to a control APP for handling.
This project is funded by the Conselleria d’Economia Sostenible, Sectors Productius, Comerç i Treball de la Generalitat Valenciana, through IVACE.
GRANT NUMBER: IMAMCI/2019/1
MORE INFORMATION IN THE NON-ECONOMIC ACTIVITIES PLAN
- Year: 2019
- Status: Finished
- Entity: IVACE