Real time vital signs monitoring algorithm from BCG

Student project at TNO (Thesis)

What will you be doing?

The aim of this student project is to create an algorithm which extracts respiratory and cardiovascular features in real time. Primary focus will be on the breathing rate, heartrate and heartrate variability. There parameters will be extracted from a ballistocardiograph (BCG), which is obtained unobtrusively using printed piezoelectric sensors. To gather the dataset which is needed for algorithm development, a volunteer study will be performed which measures the BCG as well as a reference data consisting of chest wall expansion measured with a commercial chest band and as reference ECG with commercial electrodes.

The student will (partially) assist during the execution of the volunteer tests, but will focus on the data analysis and further development of currently in-house created algorithms. The student will try to extract as accurate as possible different parameters correlated to the vital signs. The algorithm developed for this task should be developed in such a way that it will be applicable during real time measurements. The student will evaluate the performance of its developed algorithm in comparison to other measuring techniques found in literature. You will be working in a multidisciplinary team and in particular closely together with a student working on the same technology to measure posture information.


What do we require of you?

You are an ambitious master student with both scientific and practical skills looking for an internship or master thesis of at least 6-9 months. You have a biomedical science or applied science background, with knowledge in the fields of data acquisition, biomedical signal analysis and programming (python). You are pro-active and independent, and a good team player. Good communication skills in English is expected.


You will be part of a motivating and enthusiastic team on non-contact sensing. Your tasks and responsibilities include:

  • Background/literature research on BCG, RR and ECG characteristics and measurement techniques

  • Creating and performing measurement for data gathering

  • Analysis of the measured data in terms of quality and usability

  • Creation of real time algorithm to analyze BCG data in python

  • Testing/evaluating created algorithms in terms of performance

  • Evaluate the outcome to give feedback for further development

  • Participate in group meetings, provide feed-back, discuss results, and propose solutions to various challenging aspects

  • Write technical internship report

What can you expect of your work situation?

TNO is an independent research organization whose expertise and research make an important contribution to the competitiveness of companies and organizations, to the economy and to the quality of society as a whole. Innovation with purpose is what TNO stands for. With 3000 people we develop knowledge not for its own sake but for practical application. To create new products that make life more pleasant and valuable and help companies innovate. To find creative answers to the questions posed by society. We work for a variety of customers: governments, the SME sector, large companies, service providers and non-governmental organizations. Working together on new knowledge, better products and clear recommendations for policy and processes. In everything we do, impact is the key. Our product and process innovations and recommendations are only worth something if our customers can use them to boost their competitiveness.

What can TNO offer you?

You want to work on the precursor of your career; a work placement gives you an opportunity to take a good look at your prospective future employer. TNO goes a step further. It's not just looking that interests us; you and your knowledge are essential to our innovation. That's why we attach a great deal of value to your personal and professional development. You will, of course, be properly supervised during your work placement and be given the scope for you to get the best out of yourself. Naturally, we provide suitable work placement compensation.

Has this vacancy sparked your interest?

Then please feel free to apply on this vacancy! For further questions don't hesitate to contact us.

Contact: Lars Rikken
Phone number: +31 6 410 99 446