Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

iHome for smart elderly

04.04.2012
An elderly resources centre unveils high-technology home care...

The first smart home, "iHome", has newly opened in Yau Ma Tei in Hong Kong revealing the future of home care for the elderly. Established by PolyU in collaboration with the Hong Kong Housing Society and the Hong Kong Applied Science and Technology Research Institute with the support from Innovation and Technology Commission, iHome is a high-tech elderly resources centre featuring smart innovations that support independent living.

As age takes its toll, we may experience lose of health, physical ability and independence, that leads to inconvenience and discomfort in our daily lives. Smart healthcare technology designed by PolyU allows people to age well by keeping them at home, safe and comfortable, despite mental and physical limitations.

The 400-square-foot model home consists of a living room, a bedroom, a kitchen and a bathroom, fully furnished and well connected with a computer-controlled network of sensors for health monitoring and home automations to help with basic tasks in daily living. For instance, paraplegic can now dim the lights and turn on the TV for a movie with a touch of button without asking for help. That will give people with severe disability tremendous freedom and ability to take better control of their own daily lives.

In the spotlight is an array of information and communication technologies from Telecare that coordinates health-monitoring and alerting functions. For example, advanced motion sensors are adopted to track movements and activities of daily living. Mobile healthcare sensors in forms wrist and ear-born bands keep vital signs in check, including pulse rates and motion data. Information such as bathroom visits and activity levels will be sent back to a computer at the residence which does the analysis and can send alerts to smart phones and service centre when a fall happens or when abnormal pulse rate is detected.

Family members, trusted friends and physicians can now look after aging people from anywhere. The real-time monitoring provided by Telecare system gives greater visibility in terms of physical location and health status when compared with occasional visits. The information gathered also reveals changes in living patterns that may indicate emerging health problems and provide the opportunity for early treatment. One of the principal investigators, Dr Raymond Tong from PolyU's Interdisciplinary Division of Biomedical Engineering said, "Family members will have a peace of mind when seeing their elderly relative safe and well while the elderly themselves will also feel secure in their own homes knowing help is readily available."

Designed with people's comfort and privacy concern in mind, Telecare monitoring is made non-invasive and non-intrusive. Round-the-clock health watch is done without a single wire or electrode on the person and also cuts out the need to wake up the person in sleep for measurements. Freedom is guaranteed with in-home monitoring done by sensors, not by video. Caregivers can be aware of what is happening without interfering the daily routine of the elderly. For example, when the elderly people use the smart remote controller and smart stick which are embedded with pulse and motion sensors, their pulse and activity information is automatically and silently obtained and is then transmitted wirelessly for analysis.
To most elderly people, hospitals or nursing homes are the last resort as they would rather stay and age in the comfort of their own homes. The other key researcher Professor Zheng Yongping also from the Interdisciplinary Division of Biomedical Engineering commented, "Carer is not always the best option. It is a difficult and demanding job to look after elderly people, and committed and caring service is hard to find. Therefore, home automation and health monitoring is definitely the way forward to make elderly people live independently."

Another research team member Dr Eric Tam Wing-cheung from the Interdisciplinary Division of Biomedical Engineering said, "The opening of iHome is a clear expression of our commitment to this important aspect of elderly care research, which leverages our unique expertise in healthcare, biomedical engineering and product design."

iHome project is a concerted effort of experts from multi-discipline. The design team led by Prof. Tak-chi Lee from PolyU's School of Design has also contributed their expertise by innovatively integrating the healthcare sensing and home automation into the iHome apartment.

Following PolyU's mission, professionals from the Interdisciplinary Division of Biomedical Engineering as well as School of Design will continue to work together to excel in their applied research for the betterment of Hong Kong.

Wilfred Lai | Research asia research news
Further information:
http://www.polyu.edu.hk/cpa/polyu/index.php?lang=en
http://www.researchsea.com

More articles from Information Technology:

nachricht Magnetic Quantum Objects in a "Nano Egg-Box"
25.07.2017 | Universität Wien

nachricht 3-D scanning with water
24.07.2017 | Association for Computing Machinery

All articles from Information Technology >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Carbon Nanotubes Turn Electrical Current into Light-emitting Quasi-particles

Strong light-matter coupling in these semiconducting tubes may hold the key to electrically pumped lasers

Light-matter quasi-particles can be generated electrically in semiconducting carbon nanotubes. Material scientists and physicists from Heidelberg University...

Im Focus: Flexible proximity sensor creates smart surfaces

Fraunhofer IPA has developed a proximity sensor made from silicone and carbon nanotubes (CNT) which detects objects and determines their position. The materials and printing process used mean that the sensor is extremely flexible, economical and can be used for large surfaces. Industry and research partners can use and further develop this innovation straight away.

At first glance, the proximity sensor appears to be nothing special: a thin, elastic layer of silicone onto which black square surfaces are printed, but these...

Im Focus: 3-D scanning with water

3-D shape acquisition using water displacement as the shape sensor for the reconstruction of complex objects

A global team of computer scientists and engineers have developed an innovative technique that more completely reconstructs challenging 3D objects. An ancient...

Im Focus: Manipulating Electron Spins Without Loss of Information

Physicists have developed a new technique that uses electrical voltages to control the electron spin on a chip. The newly-developed method provides protection from spin decay, meaning that the contained information can be maintained and transmitted over comparatively large distances, as has been demonstrated by a team from the University of Basel’s Department of Physics and the Swiss Nanoscience Institute. The results have been published in Physical Review X.

For several years, researchers have been trying to use the spin of an electron to store and transmit information. The spin of each electron is always coupled...

Im Focus: The proton precisely weighted

What is the mass of a proton? Scientists from Germany and Japan successfully did an important step towards the most exact knowledge of this fundamental constant. By means of precision measurements on a single proton, they could improve the precision by a factor of three and also correct the existing value.

To determine the mass of a single proton still more accurate – a group of physicists led by Klaus Blaum and Sven Sturm of the Max Planck Institute for Nuclear...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Closing the Sustainability Circle: Protection of Food with Biobased Materials

21.07.2017 | Event News

»We are bringing Additive Manufacturing to SMEs«

19.07.2017 | Event News

The technology with a feel for feelings

12.07.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA flights gauge summer sea ice melt in the Arctic

25.07.2017 | Earth Sciences

Fungi that evolved to eat wood offer new biomass conversion tool

25.07.2017 | Life Sciences

New map may lead to drug development for complex brain disorders, USC researcher says

25.07.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>