Investigating Human-Body Communications Using Binaural Hearing Aids

Investigating Human-Body Communications Using Binaural Hearing Aids

Authored By admin

December 8, 2021

Scientists use a transmission medium for head-worn electronics. Wearable technology appears to take over next-generation electronics. Yet, most wireless communication methods are inadequate. Human tissue may be a transmission medium for electromagnetic signals. These discoveries are more efficient and are safer head-worn devices; binaural hearing aids and earphones are few examples. 

The advancements in miniaturization and wireless communications have resulted in modern portable devices. Now that these devices are even smaller and lighter without sacrificing functionality, wearable technology will probably account for a big part of next-generation electronics. 

We reconsider how devices communicate with one another as wireless body area networks. Using an antenna to radiate signals in the surrounding area in the hope of reaching a receiver will not suffice for wearables. Yet, this method of transmission not only consumes a lot of energy. 

What exactly are Binaural Hearing Aids?

Binaural hearing refers to the brain’s use of information from both ears. The processing that the brain performs on the information received from the two ears. Bilateral hearing aid involves the placement of two hearing aids in two ears.

Are Binaural Hearing Aids More Effective?

Binaural hearing aids improve hearing by making it more natural. The auditory center in the brain can filter speech from sound and suppress background noises thanks to signals from both ears. Speech intelligibility improves. As a result, they are in demanding situations.

The Alternatives To Wearable Technology

 Human body communication (HBC) is one approach that involves the body as a medium to send signals. The basic idea is that electric fields can propagate inside the body. As a result, we can enable skin-worn devices to communicate with each other using lower frequencies. Although HBC research has been going on for over two decades, this technology has operated on a large scale. 

The human body is essential as it absorbs electromagnetic radiation and blocks signals. To realize the potential of HBC, Japanese researchers focused on binaural hearing aids. These hearing aid devices are in pairs, one for each ear. It improves intelligibility because hearing aids contact the skin.

In a recent study, researchers investigate how electric fields emit. The researchers had conducted experimental research on HBC with real human subjects. The advancements in miniaturization and wireless communications have resulted in modern portable devices. As a result, wearable technology will likely play a significant role in next-generation electronics.


Potential of Human Body Communication

This study highlights the potential of HBC. It broadens the scope of this promising technology. Hearing aids, after all, are one type of modern head-worn wireless device. HBC could be in wireless earphones, which allow them to communicate with one another. 

Furthermore, because radio waves used in HBC attenuate outside the body, HBC-based devices could operate at similar frequencies in the same space.

They were using human-body models of varying complexity. The researchers first selected the description to ensure reliable data in their computations. Then, they proceeded to investigate the effects of various process variables and character traits. Dr. Muramatsu puts, “We calculated the input impedance characteristics of the transceiver electrodes, the transmission characteristics between transceivers, and the electric field distributions in and around the head. In this way, we clarified the transmission mechanisms of the proposed HBC system.” Finally, they determined the best electrode structure among those tested and computed the stages of electromagnetic exposure caused by their system. Human tissue is a transmission medium for electromagnetic signals.

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