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Plessey designs wristwatch sized heart rate monitor

Plessey Semiconductors design wristwatch sized heart rate monitor

Plessey Semiconductors has designed a heart rate monitor demonstration the same size as a wristwatch using its Epic sensor technology.

The device has a sensor electrode in permanent contact with the skin and a second electrode on the front of the device that can be touched by the other hand to collect heart signals.

Plessey's Epic programme director, Dr Paul James, commented: "This is ideal for the sports and fitness market where people want to measure more than just their heart rate when exercising for display either on the device or via a Bluetooth link to a mobile phone, tablet or PC. The data gathered is accurate enough that it can provide detailed ECG signals with the appropriate signal processing, including precise pulse rate and pulse rate variation. This opens up the possibility of estimating key aerobic performance parameters such as VO2max."

Plessey has also designed a version to provide continuous heart monitoring which straps to the upper arm. Two contacts on the inside of the strap are positioned so the electrical cardiac signals are out of phase and give a strong differential signal to noise ratio, enabling unwanted noise artefacts from other muscles to be filtered out to give a detailed ECG trace.

Plessey says the device would enable patients to be monitored as they go about their daily routine and detect issues that could be missed during a short period of monitoring with the conventional seven electrodes and gel approach.

Simon Fogg

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