A team of researchers at the University of Tokyo developed an armband which when triggered, gives out an alarm. A trigger is made when the wearer has developed fever.
The alarm acts like an audible warning which can tell whether an individual's body temperature has hit higher than the 37C average or falls one degree lower.
Measuring at 30cm long and 18cm wide, the armband can be worn either directly on the person's skin or on top of what he's wearing. It is designed with a thermal sensor and an organic power supply circuit that is placed under the piezo film speaker.
"Our fever alarm armband demonstrates that it is possible to produce flexible, disposable devices that can greatly enhance the amount of information available to carers in healthcare settings," said Professor Takao Someya from the University of Tokyo. "The system could also be adapted to provide audible feedback on body temperature, or combined with other sensors to register wetness, pressure or heart rate."
Constant and regular monitoring of an individual's health indicators which include his heart rate condition and body temperature is a matter of deep concern to those who are in the industry of patient care along with the caring for the infant and the elderly. It is important that the sensors used for such type of applications are flexible and wireless in order to ensure the patient's comfort. It is also essential that the sensors have no need for an external supply of energy and are maintenance-free. Lastly, they should be inexpensive enough to allow disposable use which promotes hygiene.
The new fever alarm armband is touted to have a number of "first" achievements. These include being the first organic circuit that can produce an output of sound and the first that incorporates an organic power supply circuit.
Apart from Someya, the research group that has developed the new device is also led by Professor Takayasu Sakurai at the Institute of Industrial Science. The device, which is flexible and self-powered, is composed of a flexible amorphous silicon solar panel, temperature sensor, piezoelectric speaker, and power supply circuit.
The fever alarm band is currently being presented in San Francisco during the 2015 IEEE International Solid State Circuits Conference.