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Body Area Networks (BANs) are an exciting new networking technology expected to cause a dramatic shift on the way people think and manage their health and the way they benefit from information technology and advancements in a wide range of medical and non-medical applications. Since BANs are in the early stages of their development, a number of fundamental features and challenges need to be investigated to overcome the stringent requirements tied with this technology. Also the choice of an appropriate wireless technology is required to enable BAN systems to communicate physiological data. This paper provides an overview of existing wireless technologies applicable to BANs. The specific features of each wireless technology is described along with their major advantages, drawbacks and most appropriate application in BANs. Comparison of the described technologies are provided from different aspects of frequency range, data rate, coverage area, modulation technique and network topology.
Date of Conference: 2-5 Oct. 2012