Reconfigurable Fabric: An enabling technology for pervasive medical monitoring [Conference Paper]

NESL Technical Report #: 2004-1-1

Abstract: In the past few years exciting advances in the development of pervasive computing technologies have taken place, in particular the field of flexible electronics is emerging: electronic components such as transistors and wires can be built on a thin flexible material, and polymer wires can be made to be flexible and durable. These technologies offer the opportunity to weave computation, storage, and communication into the fabric of the very clothing that we wear, thereby creating an intelligent fabric (also called electronic textiles or e-textiles). The implications of seamlessly integrating a large number of communicating computation and storage resources, mated with sensors and actuators, in close proximity to the human body are quite exciting. This paper presents the motivation for the Reconfigurable Fabric (RFab) project underway at UCLA. Reconfigurability on multiple architectural levels is critical for intelligent fabrics. Because the wires used for communication and energy distribution are woven into the garment, an intelligent garment needs to be able to find new interconnection pathways when the garment is damaged so that operation can continue. In addition, reconfiguration at the link layer can allow the creation of interconnection topologies that are well-suited to performing a particular computation. Reconfigurability is also needed at the system level in order to allow the computational load to be balanced over the available computational units. This paper discusses the system architecture of the RFab-Vest, a pervasive medical monitoring jacket, the design decisions that led to it, and describes the first complete RFab-Vest prototype.

Publication Forum: Communication Networks and Distributed Systems Modeling and Simulation Conference

Page (Count): 6

Date: 2004-01-15

Place: San Diego

Publisher: Society for Modeling and Simulation International

Public Document?: Yes

NESL Document?: Yes

Document category: Conference Paper

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