Ultra wideband used to create Star Trek 'Tricoder'

Scientists are looking towards the properties of ultra wideband transmitting technology to take another step towards making Star Trek a reality – creating a working Tricoder.

Technology featured on the show has often been sought to be replicated in real life, and now there is a $10 million fund for creating a medical instrument which is capable of giving people across the world better health care.

The Holy Grail is a ‘body area network’ that functioning at full level will help to reduce the cost of the world’s massive health bill.

While scientists and the medical community have been looking towards devices that will be able to wirelessly transmit huge amounts of data drawn from the wearer’s body for some time, there is still a long way to go to achieve these aims.

Of course there are notable advances with technology, but it is though that the X Prize Foundation, working with Qualcomm, will be looking to take a step closer to a usable health monitor.

And hoping to create such a device are a group of researchers from Oregon State University looking to implement the properties of a fascinating technology.

Ultra wideband is not exactly new, for example Intel have looked into developing the technology in the past and it has been okayed for commercial use by the Federal Communications Commission way back in 2002.

However the team believe the technology could be used extremely effectively in real time health diagnosis, transmitting huge amounts of data from the actual hardware, which can then be powered by something as small as body heat.

The ultra-low power consumption of ultra wideband means that it would certainly suit this purpose in terms of amount of energy used to keep the device working.

And with the potential to send huge amounts of data across large spectrums – apparently million of bits per second have already been achieved by IBM, with the expectation that this could reach billions.

Of course this is still at the hypothetical stage, and while it does sound mighty impressive, it could be a while away from actual implementation on a large scale.

But with ongoing advances, particularly with low powered nano devices, there does appear to be hope that the technology could be attainable, giving a way to treat a variety of disease and to even anticipate heart attacks.

In fact, according to researchers, it may be possible to start commercialising the tech within the next five years.