Tiny wireless transceiver supports electronic pills

Imec has developed a wireless transceiver that supports the medical 400 MHz frequency bands such as MICS (Medical Implant Communication Service), MEDS (Medical Data Service) or MedRadio (Medical Device Radiocommunications Service).
Imec has developed a wireless transceiver that supports the medical 400 MHz frequency bands such as MICS (Medical Implant Communication Service), MEDS (Medical Data Service) or MedRadio (Medical Device Radiocommunications Service), suiting it for applications including electronic pills. (Imec)

One challenge with implementing electronic pills is developing a wireless link that meets the volume, power and performance constraints for reliable data transmission during the period of time that the sensor is collecting data inside the body. Imec has developed a wireless transceiver that supports the medical 400 MHz frequency bands such as MICS (Medical Implant Communication Service), MEDS (Medical Data Service) or MedRadio (Medical Device Radiocommunications Service).

The wireless transceiver is implemented in 40-nm CMOS and includes on-chip tunable matching network (TMN) that enables a miniature 400-MHz antenna. The transceiver module occupies a volume of 55 mm3, which is reportedly up to 30 times smaller than state-of-the-art devices. The wireless module occupies an area of 3.5 x 15 mm, including a 3.5 x 3.8 mm PCB and a miniature 400-MHz antenna. The small form factor is achieved using a crystal-free transceiver architecture, alleviating the need for an off-chip crystal device, and a 2 mm2 transceiver IC with the on-chip tunable matching network.

While inside the body, the pills are covered by multiple layers of tissue. Therefore, a wireless system operating in the 400 MHz medical bands is preferable because of lower tissue attenuation compared to higher-frequency bands, which ensures a reliable and interference-free channel for the implants. Furthermore, the on-chip tunable matching network using self-calibration expands impedance matching up to a VSWR (voltage standing wave ratio) of 4.8, covering a wide range of impedance variation in the body, equivalent to a filled and empty stomach.

Sponsored by Digi-Key

Industrial Ethernet Solutions from ADI Chronous™ Available Now from Digi-Key

ADI’s Chronous portfolio of edge-to-enterprise Industrial Ethernet connectivity solutions is designed to accelerate your path to Industry 4.0. The compatible and interoperable Industrial connectivity products enable best-in-class performance.

Suggested Articles

A couple companies are starting to innovate power-through-the-air technology to power small IoT sensors for use cases in industrial settings.

Tech companies unable to generate cash will likely be out of business, clearing the market, says Siebel systems founder

Israeli company UVeye has developed contact-free, emergency-vehicle inspection systems equipped with thermal sensors to monitor fever in drivers.