Some of the latest in hospital technology research is monitoring patients without tubes and wires. Last month, The Blaze reported a thin device with electronic sensors that monitored vitals while stuck onto skin like a Nicorette patch. Now, it looks like scientists have developed a way to monitor breathing rate without tubes or masks as well.
According to New Scientist, the rise and fall of a patient's chest is enough to "bend" the waves of the wireless signals in a room, which scientists were able measure and correlate with breathing rate. In a hospital setting, this technology would increase patient comfort from fewer monitoring devices connected to them.
But where it gets creepy, New Scientist reports, is that a couple years ago these researchers were also able to tell where a person or object was moving due to wireless signal strength fluctuations associated with movement. If you haven't caught on yet, technology sensitive enough to detect breathing rate and the ability to "see" movement via wireless strength means this could have an application as new from of spy technology.
When the location sensing technology was originally announced, it was reported as also useful for finding locations of people behind walls in hostage situations, buying buildings and other emergency situations, according to TechShout.
New Scientist writes, "With this new level of precision, a system tailored for surveillance could spy on people as they move around a hotel room, for example, or even discern whether they are resting on a couch or in bed."