We all need to sleep, the longer we put it off the greater the need becomes and it is a battle we will always lose. Our sleep patterns are governed by an internal body clock, called the circadian rhythm. Any disruption of this cycle leads to sleepiness at times when we would normally be fresh and awake.
While sleepiness is often seen as relatively benign, continuous sleep deprivation results in excessive fatigue, prolonged inattention and stress, which consist key causes of serious industrial accidents (Chernobyl, Three-mile Island, Bhopal chemical disaster).
In addition, about 40% of fatal accidents on US highways are fatigue-related, 25% of motor accidents in the UK are associated with driver fatigue, whereas NASA states that 21% of the aviation incidents are fatigue-related. Finally, as much as 20% of the general population suffer, to some degree, from sleep disorders.
These disorders may cause the kind of extreme tiredness, loss of concentration and inability to function, responsible for the above accidents.
SENSATION aims to explore a wide range of micro and nano sensor technologies, with the aim to achieve unobtrusive, cost-effective, real-time monitoring, detection and prediction of human physiological state in relation to wakefulness, fatigue and stress anytime, everywhere and for everybody.
The project has four main research areas:
- Biosensing: development of ubiquitous and novel biosensing technologies.
- Core Computation: signal processing computational intelligence algorithms focusing on consciousness, sleep, stress, attention and fatigue.
- Medical: the application of Biosensing Core computation to Medical and Neurology diagnosis and treatment.
- Industrial: the application of Biosensing Core computation to critical industrial processes.