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Medium access control for wireless body area network - WBAN


The evolution of electronic of sensors is enabling the creation of sensor networks with specific applications such as in the medical field. A special sensor network that is under development called WBAN (Wireless Body Area Network) aims to monitor and control all vital signals of a human body. The WBANs have some different characteristics of sensor networks, commonly called WSN - Wireless Sensor Network. The two networks need very small sensors and highly efficient in terms of energy consumption, because they are usually accommodated in difficult access places and the batteries are difficult to be exchanged. In the case of WBANs, the sensors can be placed outside or internally of human body or may be attached on special clothing. In the latter case, the batteries will be easier to be exchanged and the consumption of energy will not be critical. Another feature that differentiates it is that the sensors in WBANs can operate in a transmission media with high loss because they can use the human body as means of transmission. Moreover, in the case of WBANs, the data collected are medicals, therefore require reliability and an almost real time treatment, and are also private and confidential data requiring some type of encryption. These characteristics of WBANs require studies and new proposals in the projects of network architecture, in media access controls, in data manipulation and development of essential applications.The intent of this research is initially to act on access control schemes, proposing new schemes for the WBANs that are efficient in energy consumption and at the same time have features for medical applications, such as treatment in near real-time, priority for some sensors and reliability of data obtained. In addition, the goal is also to propose mathematical models and to analyze the performances of these proposed schemes. (AU)

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