Tuesday, 30 December 2014

The car seat that detects HEART ATTACKS: Ford plans to monitor drivers' pulses to prevent accidents . . .

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The car seat that detects HEART ATTACKS: Ford plans to monitor drivers' pulses to prevent accidents

Cited at:
http://www.dailymail.co.uk/sciencetech/article-2800101/car-seat-knows-heart-attack-ford-plans-monitor-heart-activity-cars-alert-authorities-necessary.html
  • Ford's European Research and Innovation Centre in Aachen, Germany is working on a car seat that can detect heart attacks
  • The device uses six embedded sensors to monitor heart activity
  • It can then work out through clothing if someone is having a heart attack
  • The system will then notify the necessary authorities in an emergency 
  • There's no firm roll-out date yet but it should be available by 2020
Ford is preparing to roll out a car seat that can check a driver's heart activity.

The seat uses six embedded sensors to detect electrical impulses and can detect if someone is having a heart attack through clothing.

If higher than usual heart activity is detected, the necessary authorities can be contacted to provide assistance to the driver.


Ford's European Research and Innovation Centre in Aachen, Germany is working on a car seat that can detect heart attacks (shown). The device uses six embedded sensors to monitor heart activity. It can then work out through clothing if someone is having a heart attack

The project is being undertaken by Ford's European Research and Innovation Centre in Aachen, Germany and Rheinisch-Westfälische Technische Hochschule (RWTH) Aachen University.

The sensors sit on the back of the seat with the electrodes designed to detect the electronic signature of the heart through clothing.

The Ford heart rate monitoring seat performs much like a traditional ECG, except the sensors are placed on the surface of the car seat instead of being directly attached to the driver.

These special sensors are capable of reading the heart’s electrical impulses through clothing and are able to use the driver's natural contact with the seat to maintain a reading in most cases. 

The Ford heart rate monitoring seat performs much like a traditional ECG, except the sensors are placed on the surface of the car seat instead of being directly attached to the driver.

These special sensors are capable of reading the heart's electrical impulses through clothing and are able to use the driver's natural contact with the seat to maintain a reading in most cases.

Ford's engineers are apparently working on making sure all materials, body shapes and sizes can be catered to by the electrodes.

Research has shown that drivers suffering from cardiovascular disease are 23 per cent more likely to be involved in a road accident, rising to 52 per cent for drivers suffering from angina - chest pains caused by the heart.

Fords car seat may in some cases detect increased heart activity before the driver notices they are having a heart attack, so the system would display a message to the driver telling them to pull over.

Response teams could also be informed of the heart condition of the driver before, during and after an incident.

Existing Ford systems such as Lane Departure Warning, Lane Keeping Aid, Active City Stop, Driver Alert and Speed Limiter could potentially be activated when the Ford heart rate monitoring seat senses an attack is imminent, mitigating the consequences of a driver losing control because of a heart-related episode. 

Ford has invented a Heart Rate Monitoring Seat Package



The sensors sit on the back of the seat with the electrodes designed to detect the electronic signature of the heart through clothing. The system will notify the necessary authorities in an emergency. There's no firm roll-out date yet but it should be available by 2020, a Ford spokesperson tells MailOnline

Research has shown that drivers suffering from cardiovascular disease are 23 per cent more likely to be involved in a road accident, rising to 52 per cent for drivers suffering from angina - chest pains caused by the heart. Fords car seat may in some cases detect increased heart activity before the driver notices

Ford says the product is intended to help the growing aging population, reports the Financial Times.

According to the US Census Bureau, the number of Americans aged 65 and older is expected to double to 88.5 million by 2050, outnumbering children under five for the first time.

'With increasing life expectancy meaning higher numbers of people and therefore drivers at risk of heart diseases, the ability to monitor hearts at the wheel would offer massive benefits in terms of health and road safety, both for the user and the wider public,' said RWTH Aachen University Professor Steffen Leonhardt in a statement.



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