SensFloor can detect when people are walking or lying on it and can differentiate between humans and spilled liquids.
German company Future-Shape has developed a type of sensor system that is based on a textile underlay and can be laid under floor coverings like PVC, carpet, or laminate, turning floors into a large scale monitoring system.
The conductive textile floor covering, called SensFloor, can detect when people are walking on it or lying on it, and can even differentiate between people and things like spilled liquids. This function has been proven helpful in health care facilities, especially in elderly care centers or nursing homes where the system can be used to detect when patients have left their beds or have fallen on the floor and need immediate assistance.
The sensor system consist of four integrated radio modules and proximity sensors that are embedded in every square meter of the material. The sensors detect any type of movement across the floor and send the signals to a control unit in real time. The sensors measure capacitance or disturbances to the local electrical field when a person is near them and the system can even determine the direction and velocity of the movement.
Aside from its application in the health care industry, the technology can also be used in home automation or security, access control, and even in businesses where the system can be used to measure how a customer stands in front of a specific display and provide insights into what products are getting attention.
The SensFloor project is supported by the Federal Ministry of Education and Research (FKZ 16SV393X).
According to an article on Txchnologist, the SensFloor system has already been used in 20 facilities in European countries.