For a smarter body-mind connection and a sustainable digital city: uOttawa projects receive NSERC Strategic Grants

Posted on Friday, February 8, 2013

Two eminent University of Ottawa researchers will share a total of $960 337 from the Natural Sciences and Engineering Research Council of Canada (NSERC) to fund research into changing the way we self-monitor our health and establishing a technically viable and environmentally sustainable digital city.

The announcement was part of a national initiative under NSERC's Strategic Project Grants program, which supports researchers who team up with the private or public sector to carry out projects that benefit the country's economy, social fabric and environment.

The two researchers receiving this funding are:

Abdulmotaleb El Saddik - School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
U-Biofeedback: A Ubiquitous Biofeedback System for Continuous and Long-Term Wellbeing

We know that in order to be and feel healthy, we need to preserve the health of both our brain and our body. If one suffers, both will be compromised. Biofeedback is a treatment technique in which people read their own body's signals in order to improve their health. Using a thermometer to check body temperature or stepping on a scale to monitor weight changes are two forms of biofeedback. Professor El Saddik's research proposes a cutting-edge system that will enable patients suffering from conditions such as migraines, muscle pain, stress, anxiety or high blood pressure to get feedback on their condition, as well as the appropriate treatment, in the comfort of their home. The system, in turn, transmits patient data to the health care provider, who can use the feedback to regularly monitor the patient's condition. Access to a patient's treatment regimen in the home will help health care providers explore new methods of preventing and treating illness and disease.

Trevor Hall - School of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science
RF communications in the e-city (RF-Cité)

Cities are the dynamos of a global economy and responsible for the bulk of innovation. Urban planners envision a digital city in which ubiquitous broadband wireless communication enables efficient living. However, increased use of wireless access networks is leading to unsustainable energy consumption levels. Professor Hall's innovative use of coherent optical radio frequency (RF) transmission, along with cutting-edge digital signal processing and advanced photonic devices, will lead to wireless access deployed at the density needed to meet sustainable energy consumption levels. This research will provide Canadian businesses with commercialization opportunities, develop highly qualified and skilled workers and position Canada at the forefront of innovation in emerging digital cities.

The University of Ottawa is committed to research excellence and encourages an interdisciplinary approach to knowledge creation, which attracts the best academic talent from across Canada and around the world. The University plays an important role in the economic development of the National Capital Region.


Néomie Duval
Media Relations Officer
University of Ottawa
613-562-5800 x2981
613-863-7221 (cell)

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