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An exploratory study on electric field sensing

: Wilmsdorff, Julian von; Kirchbuchner, Florian; Fu, Biying; Braun, Andreas; Kuijper, Arjan


Braun, Andreas (Ed.); Wichert, Reiner (Ed.); Gomez, Antonio Maña (Ed.):
Ambient Intelligence. 13th European Conference, AmI 2017 : Malaga, Spain, April 26-28, 2017, Proceedings
Cham: Springer International Publishing, 2017 (Lecture Notes in Computer Science 10217)
ISBN: 978-3-319-56996-3 (Print)
ISBN: 978-3-319-56997-0 (Online)
ISBN: 3-319-56996-1
DOI: 10.1007/978-3-319-56997-0
European Conference on Ambient Intelligence (AmI) <13, 2017, Malaga>
Conference Paper
Fraunhofer IGD ()
capacitive sensors; motion detection; gesture recognition; sensor technology; electrical engineering; activity recognition; Human-computer interaction (HCI); electric field sensing; Guiding Theme: Individual Health; Guiding Theme: Smart City; Research Area: Human computer interaction (HCI)

Electric fields are influenced by the human body and other conducting materials. Capacitive measurement techniques are used in touch-screens, in the automobile industry, and for presence and activity recognition in Ubiquitous Computing. However, a drawback of the capacitive technology is the energy consumption, which is an important aspect for mobile devices. In this paper we explore possible applications of electric field sensing, a purely passive capacitive measurement technique, which can be implemented with an extremely low power consumption. To cover a wide range of applications, we examine five possible use cases in more detail. The results show that the application is feasible both in interior spaces and outdoors. Moreover, due to the low energy consumption, mobile usage is also possible.