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XeThru respiration sensors used in Pilot project by Norwegian Police

Novelda, Firelink and the Trondheim police district is currently collaborating on a pilot study monitoring vital signs of inmates. Four prison cells were retrofitted with XeThru respiration and movement sensors installed in the ceiling lamp. Data from the sensors are presented to the individual on duty - with alarms triggering if a person breathes less than 10 times per minute.

The cells are typically used for intoxicated people where life signs can be difficult to monitor. By using the XeThru technology, the local police force hopes to get a better overview of its inmates, prevent overdoses and potentially save lives. When people are being brought in, the staff does not have the proper medical qualifications to assess their complete medical condition. Very often, critical health information is not disclosed either. A routine check of the detainees happens every 30min, however this is not fast enough in some cases when being left without supervision for mere minutes can be fatal. With this monitoring system, the wardens are able to continuously check on all inmates and make sure that they are instantly notified if something happens. Being mainly used for intoxicated people, the risk of overdose and death is high in those cells. Just two weeks ago, police staff was able to call an ambulance in time when one radar signaled a low breathing rate in one of the cells.


The alarm goes off if breathing rate drops below 10 RPM
Photo: Torkjell Trædal - politiforum.no

The monitoring system is completely anonymous and only measures movement and breathing. There is no video monitoring nor are names registered. In the future, the radars can also be integrated into cell walls and easily customizable into cellular infrastructure. If desired, they could be linked to cell doors and the measurement can start once the door closes. This pilot study is the starting point to improve the system and find any of its weaknesses. The alarm has already been revised to go off when the breathing rate goes below 10 breaths per minute.

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Video: Torkjell Trædal - politiforum.no


This study will continue in 2017 and it is hoped that eventually other police stations will see the importance of this system and will adapt it as well. At Novelda, we are very excited when our technology helps solving a practical problem and not to mention save lives.

For the Norwegian readers, please find a link to the original article here.