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Reference : UMR7248-FRATRU-003
Workplace : SOPHIA ANTIPOLIS
Date of publication : Thursday, October 31, 2019
Type of Contract : FTC Scientist
Contract Period : 18 months
Expected date of employment : 3 February 2020
Proportion of work : Full time
Remuneration : 2643 euros Brut
Desired level of education : 5-year university degree
Experience required : Indifferent
The mission of PROLONG (Portable Receiver to improve Older adults' safety through gait anaLysis using Opportunistic Networking and very high accuracy Galileo-based location) project is to monitor movements and activities of older adults in order to detect conditions of possible danger, such as falls, night wandering episodes, to name but a few. Differently from existing market offers, the PROLONG solution will address indoor but also the outdoor scenarios, that is when the older adults are outside their homes or outside protected infrastructures, such as nursing homes. To do so PROLONG will design and manufacture a prototype of portable GNSS-IoT tracker (up to 10 units will be manufactured and tested) to be brought in the pocket as keychain, or to be worn as belt attachment, bracelet or necklace). The system will be capable of performing gait analysis (analysis of locomotion) based on very accurate PNT (Positioning, Navigation and Timing) data, detecting conditions of possible danger (e.g. unstable walking pattern, wandering, fall) and then generating an alert (e.g. playing a loud beeping sound and sending an alert to caregiver).
Within the PROLONG project, the LEAT is responsible for the design and realization of the PROLONG receiver. This will feature a variety of sensors matched by a very new dual frequency Galileo chipset (u-blox ZED-F9P), a novel antenna sub-system (for both GNSS and IoT modules) specifically designed to operate in close contact with the body and to reduce performance degradation, and it will leverage on a range of opportunistic networking strategies using LPWAN (including the new 2.4 GHz range), Bluetooth and 5G standards, that will be used to achieve minimisation of power consumption while sending information to backend services.
The recruited engineer/post-doc will be in charge of the design of the PROLONG receiver
and the manufacturing of a pre-series of 10 units for test and validation activities within
the project. The layout and integration of the terminal will be subcontracted.
The PROLONG receiver will includes the following technologies, with tentative associated
- A high-precision forthcoming dual frequency Global Navigation Satellite System – GNSS multi-channel receiver supporting Galileo, GPS, Glonass and Beidou (u-blox ZED-F9P) allowing accurate multi-constellation GNSS. The processing of the data acquired on the two channels through the algorithm by KUA, will enable real time PVT estimation at the level of few decimetres accuracy in position domain and few mm/s precision in velocity domain.
- A LoRa sub-GHz (900 MHz) radio transceiver ideal for long range wireless applications and LPWAN (Low Power Wide Area Network) use cases. The selected module is the Semtech SX1261 transceiver, designed for long battery life with just 4.2 mA of active receive current consumption. The transceiver complies with the physical layer requirements of the LoRaWAN specification
released by the LoRa Alliance.
- A LoRa 2.4 GHz radio transceiver (Semtech SX1280). This is the first ISM band
transceiver IC of their kind to integrate a time-of-flight functionality, enabling for ranging measurements that open up to location and tracking solutions. The module includes also Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) PHY layer compatibility and will allow ranging for low-level location capabilities, complementing high level precision features on an opportunistic way.
- An LTE Cat M1 and NB‑IoT module (u-blox SARA‑R412M). This module provides also quad‑band EGPRS support enabling 2G connectivity to guarantee broad geographic coverage, even in areas where LTE Cat M1 and NB‑IoT are not widely available yet. The module will be activated by the firmware only when required (e.g. in countries or areas where no LoRa network is available).
- A 2.4/5 GHz ISM band Wi-Fi radio module (Panasonic PAN9026) featuring 802.11
a/b/g/n standards as well as the recent 802.11mc (also known as Wi-Fi Round-
Trip-Time, allowing measuring the distance from Wi-Fi access points and
therefore perform indoor location at metric accuracy (see following sections).
- An ultra-low power Microcontroller (STM32F072RB) to control the sensors and communication modules. This device integrates a USB line, I2Cs, SPI and a 48 MHz CPU with sub-μA power consumption in sleep mode.
- An Inertial Measurement Unit (IMU), which will help in understanding the movements of the device. The IMU will be used also to reduce the power consumption by switching off the GNSS receiver when the device is not moving.
- A temperature/humidity/pression sensor (Bosch BME280), providing additional information that can be used to improve the location accuracy.
- Multiple antenna systems covering the different wireless standards available on
the device. Antennas will be designed with the aim of maximizing the
miniaturization, while keeping an acceptable energy efficiency value.
- Define the final specification of the terminal
- Provide to the subcontractor the functional schemes and parts for layout
- Integrate the miniature antennas in the terminal
- Follow the fabrication and assembly process
- Develop the testing plan and perform it.
- Collaborate and exchange with the other partners of the project
- Prepare reports and deliverables,
- Participate to the project meetings.
- Firmware developement,
- Electronics components integration
- participation and scientific management of the project
The candidate will work on the SophiaTech Campus, in the CMA (Antenna Design and Modeling) team in the Laboratory of Electronics, Antennas and Telecommunications (LEAT).
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