Chronic diseases account for over 1/3 of deaths around the world. To mitigate the impact of such diseases, the healthcare paradigm is now shifting from reactive illness management towards proactive and preemptive health management; the goal here is to maintain a healthy life in the first place or to prevent illness from getting any worse by continuously monitoring health during normal daily life. Body Area Network (BAN) is an attractive means for continuous and pervasive health monitoring, yet its unique and harsh environment gives circuit designers many challenges. As the human body absorbs the majority of RF energy around the GHz band, existing RF radio may not be ideal for communications between and on-body sensors.
In order to solve the issues, this talk presents the Body Coupled Communication (BCC)-based BAN. BCC BAN utilizes the human body itself as a communication medium, which has orders of magnitude less path loss when compared to RF-based BAN. We will begin with channel characteristics, followed by design considerations and transceiver implementation examples. I will then discuss what circuit designers should consider in such non-conventional environments. Low energy circuit techniques to overcome their limitations will also be discussed. We will then will review their various system aspects.