2nd International ICST Conference on Body Area Networks

Research Article

Body area networking standardization: present and future directions

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  • @INPROCEEDINGS{10.4108/bodynets.2007.140,
        author={Carlos Cordeiro and Maulin Patel},
        title={Body area networking standardization: present and future directions},
        proceedings={2nd International ICST Conference on Body Area Networks},
        keywords={Body Area Networks wireless standard},
  • Carlos Cordeiro
    Maulin Patel
    Year: 2007
    Body area networking standardization: present and future directions
    DOI: 10.4108/bodynets.2007.140
Carlos Cordeiro1,*, Maulin Patel1,*
  • 1: Philips Research N.A. 345 Scarborough Road Briarcliff Manor, NY 10510
*Contact email: carlos.cordeiro@philips.com, maulin.patel@philips.com


Body Area Networks (BAN) designed for medical, lifestyle and entertainment applications have drawn the attention of many researchers and industry players alike. This is primarily due to the surge in the number of personal electronic gadgets, new sensing and monitoring devices for in-body and near-body use, device miniaturization, and technological advances in Wireless Sensor Networking (WSN). BAN enables the convergence of these technologies by providing a single unified solution for connectivity in and around the body towards providing the connected consumer experience. BAN brings about new set of challenges such as scalability (in terms of data rate, power consumption and number of devices), integration of in and around the body networking, interference mitigation, coexistence, QoS, and ultra-low power protocols and algorithms. Moreover, effects on human body have to be considered and several regulatory requirements have to be met. On the standardization side, the IEEE 802.15 Study Group on BAN (SG-BAN) has recently been formed to lead the initiative of developing a single unifying BAN standard that addresses these challenges. In this paper we study the applications, functional and technical requirements that are at the center of the first BAN specific standards making process. We compare and contrast these requirements with existing low power low data rate WPAN standard called ZigBee. Our goal is to highlight the core set of requirements and research challenges which must be addressed by a BAN standard for it to become ubiquitous and pervasive technology.