Short range wireless data communication networks that are used for sport and health care are sometimes called Wireless Body Area Networks (WBANs) and they are located more or less on a person. Sole Integrated Gait Sensor (SIGS) is a research project in WBAN, where wireless pressure sensors are placed like soles in the shoes of persons with different kinds of deceases. The sensors can measure the pressure of the foot relative to the shoe i.e. the load of the two legs is measured.
This information can be useful e.g. to not over or under load a leg after joint replacement or as a bio feedback system to help e.g. post stroke patients to avoid falling. The SIGS uses the ANT Protocol and radio specification. ANT uses the 2.4 GHz ISM band and TDMA is used to share a single frequency. The scheduling of time slots is adaptive isochronous co-existence i.e. the scheduling is not static and each transmitter sends periodically but checks for interference with other traffic on the radio channel.
In this unidirectional system sole sensors are masters (transmitters) and the WBAN server is the slave in ANT sense. The message rate is chosen as 8 Hz which is suitable for low power consumption. Hence in the SIGS system, it is necessary to synchronize the left and the right foot sensors because of low message rate.
Source: Jönköping University
Author: Nathirulla Sheriff