The goal of VitalMonitor focuses on the development of a system for real-time monitoring of situation-dependent burden on soldiers. It uses innovative wireless body-carrying and vitality sensors integrated into clothing or equipment. The recorded data from these special clothes are processed using intelligent sensor fusion and data analysis in order to get an overview of the physiological requirements and enable an assessment of the actual stress situation in military training, as well as during exercising or missions. The analysis of the scenario-specific parameters as a basis for the optimization of physical performance with a simultaneous reduction of dangerous- or security problems, caused by physical or cognitive exhaustion, can be considered as major research and development priorities in this project
Background and Motivation
Depending on the military mission, the requirements and psycho-physiological stress patterns for the affected persons can differ. Due to the high degree of technical sophistication in military work tasks, the investigation of psycho-physiological performance can be considered as a key issue for a successful completion of the contract. Basically the findings from the civil research area cannot or only partially be transferred to this issue. The combination of heat and physical strain is a burden for the human organism, which can suddenly lead to severe performance interruptions and critical health situations. Activities in special military functional apparel, such as e.g. NBC or Explosive Protection Suits, represent highly intense physical stress and require the collection of practice-relevant stress parameters on the basis of diagnostic parameters and a proper targeted risk- and load management.
Recent developments in the field of wearable bio-sensor technology allow measurement accuracy and runtimes with simultaneous significant reduction in size and cost. It offers new possibilities for implementing a real-time-capable wireless body-carrying sensor system for measuring psycho-physiological stress. Mobile spirometry solutions and sensors wearing on the body allow exact load analyses in realistic scenarios (field tests) and thus enable a practical physiological monitoring.
Objectives and innovation aspects
VitalMonitor focuses on the development of a system for real-time monitoring of situation-dependent burden on soldiers. It uses innovative wireless body-carrying and / or vitality sensors integrated into clothing / equipment. The recorded data from these special clothes are processed using intelligent sensor fusion and data analysis in order to get an overview of the physiological requirements and enable an assessment of the actual stress situation. The analysis of the scenario-specific parameters as a basis for the optimization of physical performance - while simultaneously countermeasures can be taken to reduce the danger due to physical or cognitive exhaustion - are major research and development priorities in this project. Using innovative "machine learning" approaches, sensor data (from "laboratory measurements") or measurements during training, scenarios are modelled and analysed in a scenario-specific manner in order to obtain an improved statement about the individual stress situation in real life situations.
As a major outcome of this project, on the basis of innovative mobile sensor solutions and time-optimized sensor models, a real-time management system is created to individually control critical application scenarios, and consequently enabling interventions in a timely manner. Required investigations and extensive analyses are to be carried out in the BMLV research project "HeatStress" and the results and measurement data from "HeatStress" will be incorporated into the VitalMonitor project. Together with the new comprehensive multi-sensoral measurement data from VitalMonitor, the results will form a corresponding data basis for innovative method development based on machine learning / deep learning approaches.