Medical and biological engineering

, Volume 12, Issue 3, pp 378–381 | Cite as

An ultrasonic system for measuring activity

  • J. Haines
Technical Note


These results led us to conclude that (i) the method is valid in that it confirmed a known cultural difference in the use of gesture; (ii) it is sensitive, as it discerned an increase in gesture during 7 min of recording when verbal expression was difficult; and (iii) it is both a reliable and practicable method, as level of gesturing was shown to be a stable characteristic of the individual.

There is quite a good definition of movement and the wavelength (8·25 mm at 40 kHz) is comparable with radio-frequency methods using 3500 MHz

More information can be extracted from an experiment by recording the system's output pulses on magnetic tape and producing, via a computer, a time-interval histogram. Using pulse duration as thex scale, the spread of amplitudes will be an indication of the amount of movement at different speeds.


Ultrasonic activity monitor 


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  1. Haines, J., Sainsbury, P. andWood, E. J. (1972) An ultrasonic system for measuring physiological activity. Paper read atRoyal Society of Medicine. Measurements in Medicine Section.Google Scholar
  2. Mullard (1972) Piezoelectric air transducers. Mullard Technical Information Service Note.Google Scholar
  3. Peacock, L. J. andWilliams, M. (1962) An ultrasonic device for recording activity.Am. J. Psychol. 75, 648–652.CrossRefGoogle Scholar
  4. Sainsbury, P. andCostain, W. R. (1971) The measurement of psychomotor activity: Some clinical applications.J. Psychosom. Res. 15, 487–494.CrossRefGoogle Scholar

Copyright information

© International Federation for Medical & Biological Engineering 1974

Authors and Affiliations

  • J. Haines
    • 1
  1. 1.Medical Research Council Clinical Psychiatry UnitGraylingwell HospitalChichesterEngland

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