“We’re developing millimetre wave (mmWave) technology analysed by machine learning routines to unobtrusively and non-invasively monitor activities of aged care residents with a range of conditions, including dementia. This technology can identify abnormal behaviour, including aspects such as falls, poor sleep, activity levels, and then flag concerns to carers should intervention be required,” Ross explained.
“The technology is very impressive,” Ross added. “As it does not use the visible spectrum, mmWave preserves the client’s privacy while being able to detect objects and people within a room. It can even be used to measure heart and respiratory rates.”
Ross explains that once commercialised, the technology will be integrated into the Vitalcare’s nurse call system which is used widely in aged care institutions across Australia. It will also be applied to products suitable for home use to assist residents in maintaining independent living.
Ross was enthusiastic about the project and complimentary of the quality of student and professional support received in the collaboration with UNSW, commenting, “It is very rewarding to be investing in both new technology and the next generation of engineers who will solve many of the challenges of today.”
The partnership between UNSW and Vitalcare was made possible through the NSW Government’s Boosting Business Innovation Program, designed to bring together university researchers and small-to-medium sized businesses to embark on innovative joint research projects.