Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy (PhD)


Electrical and Computer Engineering

Committee Chair

Emil Jovanov

Committee Member

Ramazan Aygun

Committee Member

Greg Vaughn

Committee Member

S. M. Yoo

Committee Member

Earl Wells


Intelligent control systems., Optical detectors., Wireless communication systems., Biosensors.


Health monitoring Wireless Body Area Networks (WBANs) are systems with stringent demands regarding various performance metrics. The information collected and processed by WBANs is used in the diagnosis of health conditions; therefore, reliability of communication is a critical issue. The overlap of transmission ranges between wireless networks as a result of mobility, known as dynamic coexistence, is a major source of interference that may significantly affect the operation of WBANs in medical environments. In this dissertation, we study the effects of dynamic coexistence on the operation of IEEE 802.15.4-based health monitoring WBANs. We investigate the candidate wireless technologies for WBAN implementations and their performance in the presence of interference and coexistence. We analytically study the performance of the IEEE 802.15.4-based WBANs and demonstrate that the current IEEE 802.15.4 standard lacks mechanisms for providing effective responses to the dynamic coexistence. Considering the specific characteristics and requirements of health monitoring WBANs, we propose methods to facilitate the detection and mitigation of the harmful effects of coexistence in IEEE 802.15.4-based WBANs. We model and simulate realistic scenarios, traffic patterns, and levels of interference and show where each of our proposed methods has optimal performance. We use simulation to assess the effectiveness of our proposed mechanisms, implement a novel coexistence management scheme on our custom made WBAN, and measure its performance. The results of this research demonstrate that the proposed methods significantly improve the performance of WBANs in the case of dynamic coexistence.



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