RTD Talos Ltd


The objective of IcyHeart is to investigate and demonstrate a highly integrated and power-efficient microelectronic solution for remote monitoring of a person’s electrocardiogram (ECG) signals. A complete System-on-a-Chip (SoC) will be developed and will embark on a single chip an ultra low-power signal acquisition front-end with analogue-to-digital converter (ADC) for ECG, a low-power digital signal processor (DSP), and a low-energy radio frequency (RF) transceiver. Energy efficient signal processing algorithms targeting ECG and similar signals will be embedded and run on the on-chip DSP.

The proposed research will enable major technological breakthroughs in the areas of highly integrated “sensing-converting-processing-transmitting” solutions in a single chip. The IcyHeart technology will generate high market value for the European SMEs developing novel cardio-monitoring products in home and professional environments, and create high societal impact for several categories of European citizens requiring miniature, comfortable and easy-to-use wireless tele-healthcare solutions.


The Work Packages of the IcyHeart project are:

WP1 - SME driven specifications
The objective of WP1 is to analyse the user requirements of the end-user SMEs, and produce a collection of refined usage scenarios. Additionally within this WP the IcyHeart system architectural break-down will be defined and the functional specifications will be established.

WP2 - Sensor interface
The objectives of WP2 is first to design a low-power integrated sensor interface test chip and second to develop a hardware setup to include the sensor interface. The first task includes the design in a standard CMOS 0.18 um process of an analogue amplification chain that will treat the ECG signal from a set of three electrodes into an adequate differential signal level for the ADC. This ADC (analogue to digital converter) will also be designed in this task with specific constraints dedicated to the ECG acquisition. These are mainly a bandwidth of 1kHz with a low power consumption under a 1V supply voltage and a 12 bits resolution. The second task will focus on the hardware development kits (HDK) that will support the software development and embark the various IcyHeart hardware (HW) components.

WP3 - Embedded processing
WP3 will focus on the R&D for the suite of energy-efficient ECG signal processing algorithms that will run on the IcyHeart SoC, and the implementation of the embedded wireless communication stack.
In detail, the partner EPFL leads the ECG embedded signal processing activity, and coordinates its work with SG and CSEM for an optimized implementation of the designed algorithm and the wireless communication protocol in the software stack on the final platform.

WP4 - System integration
WP4 will concern the design and integration of the IcyHeart SoC, and subsequently of the system integration tasks to deliver the IcyHeart OEM module. The IcyHeart SoC, leveraged from CSEM’s icycom platform, will embed the ADC core jointly with the 868/915MHz radio as well as the signal processing and the communication software and will be integrated in 0.18um CMOS.

WP5 - IcyHeart prototype
The objectives of this Work Package is to realise a demonstrator prototype which utilises IcyHeart technology to facilitate the collection and initial analysis of psychological data from body worn sensors, as well as the wireless transfer of these to a hand-held monitoring device.

WP6 - Dissemination and exploitation
WP6 includes the following activities:
Knowledge Management and IPR protection activities. The final aim of the IPR protection activities is to support the participating SME-Ags and their members in protecting and using the research results to theri best advantege.
Exploitation Agreement: It will detail the agreements between the consortium members regarding exploitation issues.
Plan for the Use and Dissemination of the Foreground (PUDF): This document will collect the individual intentions of each partner. The final PUDF will describe the participants actual achievements in dissemination and their plans, for the exploitation of their results.

WP7 - Consortium Management
WP 7 acts as a regulating Work Package towards the project as a whole and its main objective is to review and assess the work being carried out by optimizing the application of technical resources within the project, among partners and subcontracted RTD performers, and to establish exploitation mechanisms. Work Package 9 also seeks to ensure that all aspects of EC requirements for communication and reporting are met while also being responsible for the maintenance of the Consortium Agreement.

The IcyHeart project has received funding form the European Union’s Seventh Framework Programme (Capacities, Research for the Benefit of SMEs) managed by REA – Research Executive Agency under Grant Agreement No. 286130.

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