Towards BLE-enabled Pacemakers

Pacemakers are crucial in extending lives and maintaining heart health, as they regulate heartbeats while also monitoring vital patient data. It’s critical that these devices have a long-lasting battery life and reliably communicate critical events to ensure timely intervention and protect patient well-being. Most state-of-the-art pacemakers, however, employ proprietary wireless protocols, limiting their data transmission to once every 24 hours. This constraint hinders real-time monitoring and responses to potential cardiac irregularities, ultimately impacting the quality of patient care. In this thesis, you will work towards making pacemakers more efficient and reliable to improve patient care. You will use Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) technology to implement a highly efficient and reliable communication protocol for pacemakers that allows to reliably exchange time-critical data between a pacemaker and its base station. Partnering with the Medical University of Graz and LKH Graz, you’ll conduct real-world experiments, implanting your prototype in a living pig to assess the impact of body-shadowing on wireless signal propagation. Your work will enable a new class of pacemakers that use BLE technology to reliably and efficiently exchange timely patient data.

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Student Target Groups:

  • Students of ICE/Telematics;
  • Students of Computer Science.

Thesis Type:

  • Master Project / Master Thesis

Goal and Tasks:

  • Investigate the performance of BLE in in-body deployments using our high-fidelity measurement equipment;
  • Learn and improve your embedded programming skills (specifically in creating reliable and energy-efficient systems);
  • Elevate your BLE expertise as you tackle real-world challenges, bridging the gap between theory and practical application.

Note that there is the possibility of getting a paid contract while working on the thesis.

Recommended Prior Knowledge:

  • Basic knowledge of Bluetooth Low Energy (BLE) and wireless communication;
  • Experience with embedded system development in C (e.g., in Zephyr RTOS).


  • a.s.a.p.