Faculty Advisor

Reinhold Ludwig

Faculty Advisor

Kaveh Pahlavan




"Localization inside the human body using Radio Frequency (RF) transmission is gaining importance in a number of applications such as Wireless Capsule Endoscopy. The accuracy of RF localization depends on the technology adopted for this purpose. The two most common RF localization technologies use Received Signal Strength (RSS) and Time-Of-Arrival (TOA). This research first provides bounds for accuracy of localization of a Endoscopy capsule inside the human body as it moves through the gastro-Intestinal track with and without randomness in transmit power using RSS based localization with a triangulation algorithm. It is observed that in spite of presence of a large number of anchor nodes; the localization error is still in range of few cm, which is quite high; hence we resort to TOA based localization. Due to lack of a widely accepted model for TOA based localization inside human body we use a computational technique for simulation inside and around the human body, named Finite Difference Time Domain (FDTD). We first show that our proprietary FDTD simulation software shows acceptable results when compared with real empirical measurements using a vector network analyzer. We then show that, the FDTD method, which has been used extensively in all kinds of electromagnetic modeling due to its versatility and simplicity, suffers seriously because of its demanding requirement on memory storage and computation time, which is due to its inherently recursive nature and the need for absorbing boundary conditions. In this research we suggest a novel computationally efficient technique for simulation using FDTD by considering FDTD as a Linear Time Invariant (LTI) system. Then we use the software to simulate the TOA of the narrowband and wideband signals propagated inside the human body for RF localization to compare the accuracies of the two using this method. "


Worcester Polytechnic Institute

Degree Name



Electrical & Computer Engineering

Project Type


Date Accepted





CR Bound, Time of Arrival, Finite Difference Time Domain, Body Area Network, RF Localization, Received Signal Strength