Publications / 2017 Proceedings of the 34rd ISARC, Taipei, Taiwan

Developing a Low Cost Capacitive ECG via Arduino and Single-Board Computer Interfaced with Capacitive Electrodes for Prevention and Security Aspects

Jörg Güttler and Thomas Bock
Pages 80-87 (2017 Proceedings of the 34rd ISARC, Taipei, Taiwan, ISBN 978-80-263-1371-7, ISSN 2413-5844)

Coronary heart disease (CHD), and its different variants, is one of the major reasons of increased death rates in industrialized nations. As the beginning of the disease is symptom free, unconsciousness and sudden death, as well as health related distortions can trigger accidents at construction sites any time. Therefore, there is a need for systems, which can detect such silent symptoms, in order to prevent health related accidents on construction side. Nowadays, most common way to identify first symptoms of CHD is the electrocardiography (ECG). Therefore, in this paper a novel approach for the implementation of a contactless capacitive ECG, which can be straightforwardly embedded in a chair is proposed, in order to enable a pervasive user experience (e.g. while steering heavy machines). The capacitive electrodes were manufactured using of-the-shelf components, tested and calibrated. The main requirement during the design and development phase was fabrication of a basic low cost capacitive ECG system with wireless connectivity to a platform that could display the corresponding measurements to the user over a display. Such an approach could pave the way for future pervasive sensor fusion, i.e. interfaced with an automated emergency call gateway, in order to enhance the prevention of such diseases, before it is too late for the users. The achieved measurement quality of this contactless system is depicted by comparing measurements between measurements with direct skin contact and with measurements through cloths. The influence of the wireless data transmission using XBee antennas as a communication medium has been investigated, tested, and evaluated.

Keywords: Capacitive Electrodes, ECG measurement, XBee, e-Health, contactless measurement