Body Area Network (BAN) technology uses small, low power wireless devices that can be carried or embedded inside or on the body. Applications include but are not limited to:
- health and wellness monitoring
- sports training (e.g., to measure performance)
- personalized medicine (e.g., heart monitors)
- personal safety (e.g., fall detection)
A number of wireless BAN communication technologies have been implemented based on the existing radio technologies. However, if BAN technology is to achieve its full potential, it needs a more specific and dedicated technology, which is optimized for BAN. For example, solutions for monitoring people during exercise one or two hours a day, or a few days a week, may not be suitable for 24/7 monitoring as a part of the Internet of Things (IoT) concept.
Such a dedicated BAN technology would need features such as:
- ultra-low-power radio
- low-complexity Medium Access Control (MAC) protocol for extended autonomy
- enhanced robustness in the presence of interference
- high security, privacy and trust
- interoperability when communicating over heterogeneous networks in the future IoT
- interoperable data structures and formats
OUR ROLE & ACTIVITIES
Smart Body Area Network (BAN) technology uses small, low power devices to support a range of medical, health improvement, personal safety and wellbeing, and sport and leisure applications. However, various challenges have been identified that hinder BAN communications development. For example, solutions that may be suitable for monitoring people during exercise one or two hours a day, or a few days a week, fall short of what is needed for 24/7 monitoring in the Internet of Things (IoT). Many wireless BAN communication technologies have been implemented based on various existing radio technologies, but it needs a more specific and dedicated technology, which is optimized for BAN. This would require including features, such as ultra-low-power radio, with a lower complexity Medium Access Control (MAC) protocol for extended autonomy, enhanced robustness in the presence of interference, and interoperability when communicating over heterogeneous networks in the IoT. Other key issues to be addressed include Quality of Service, security and interoperability in various levels.
ETSI TC SmartBAN has primary the responsibility to develop and to maintain ETSI Standards, Specifications, Reports, Guides and other deliverables to support the development and implementation of all Smart Body Area Network technologies (Wireless BAN, Personal BAN, Personal Networks, among others) in the application areas: health, wellness, leisure, sport and other relevant domains.
Its scope includes communication media, and associated physical layer, network layer, security, QoS and lawful intercept, and the provision of generic applications and services (e.g., web) for standardisation in Body Network Area technologies.
Future SmartBANs will exist within a wider IoT environment. Noting this coexistence, ETSI TC SmartBAN extended its work via contributions to various bodies, both within ETSI (including SmartM2M and ERM TG 30), as well as external bodies including AIOTI (Alliance for the Internet of Things Innovation), IEC SyC AAL (Active Assisted Living), Bluetooth Special Interest Group (BT SIG), H2020 ACTIVAGE (Active & Healthy Ageing IoT based solutions and services) and the ITEA’s CareWare project.
A full list of related standards in the public domain is accessible via the SmartBAN committee page.