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Sensors for a better quality of life

In an emergency, people can survive without food for several months. Drinking nothing, however, has a negative impact already after a few hours and becomes critical after just a few days. Innovationsmanufaktur is part of the project "SeLe - Senors for a better quality of life"  which will develop a sensor system that is able to monitor the body's water supply. Innovationsmanufaktur's tasks are the user and environmental analysis as well as field tests regarding the application for sport and lifestyle. The project is funded by the German Ministry of Education and Research (BMBF).

Humans consist of approximately 60 percent water which is needed to transport nutrients, toxicants, and for all other biological processes. The body loses water every day via the kidneys, the bowels, the skin, and respiration. It is vital to offset those losses by drinking. Normally, our thirst reminds us to drink, however, in some instances this feeling does not work well enough. SeLe is especially tailored to people in need of care since healthy adults tackle the loss of liquidity better than for example babies and toddlers, sick people and the elderly. Case in point: Dehydration is next to malnutrition and pneumonia one of the most frequent causes of death among people with dementia. This is due to the fact that the feeling of thirst lessens with age so that in extreme cases the bodies of the elderly can contain 10-15 percent less water than needed, which leads to a vicious circle: Dehydration leads to weakness which in turn leads to a reduced ability to drink independently.

There are, however, more target groups that will profit from the SeLe sensors: white-collar workers who become tired and less productive, or athletes, hikers, and outdoor activists, who want to train effectively or reach their peak potential without the risk of dehydration. If you take professional athletes, for example, optimal dehydration is, depending on the type of sport, between 0 % (Basketball) and 5 % (Running). The far-reaching consequences of continuous dehydration are, among others, dryness of the mouth, loss of efficiency, confusion, dizziness, and a collaps of the circulation.

The project coordinator for SeLe is Infineon Technologies, other partners apart from Innovationsmanufaktur are the Friedrich-Alexander Universität Erlangen-Nürnberg, Senetics Healthcare Group GmbH & Co. KG, MediSana AG, Wearable Technologies AG, Wilhelm Löhe Hochschule and the clinical center Region Hannover GmbH, as well as Ortema GmbH as associated partner.

Further information can be found on the project's homepage or directly by writing to Martin Strehler.

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