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  1. Currently, wired respiratory rate sensors tether patients to a location and can potentially obscure their body from medical staff. In addition, current wired respiratory rate sensors are either inaccurate or invasive. Spurred by these deficiencies, we have developed the Bellyband, a less invasive smart garment sensor, which uses wireless, passive Radio Frequency Identification (RFID) to detect bio-signals. Though the Bellyband solves many physical problems, it creates a signal processing challenge, due to its noisy, quantized signal. Here, we present an algorithm by which to estimate respiratory rate from the Bellyband. The algorithm uses an adaptively parameterized Savitzky-Golay (SG) filter to smooth the signal. The adaptive parameterization enables the algorithm to be effective on a wide range of respiratory frequencies, even when the frequencies change sharply. Further, the algorithm is three times faster and three times more accurate than the current Bellyband respiratory rate detection algorithm and is able to run in real time. Using an off-the-shelf respiratory monitor and metronome-synchronized breathing, we gathered 25 sets of data and tested the algorithm against these trials. The algorithm’s respiratory rate estimates diverged from ground truth by an average Root Mean Square Error (RMSE) of 4.1 breaths per minute (BPM) over all 25 trials. Further, preliminary results suggest that the algorithm could be made as or more accurate than widely used algorithms that detect the respiratory rate of non-ventilated patients using data from an Electrocardiogram (ECG) or Impedance Plethysmography (IP). 
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  3. Self-folding behavior is an exciting property of weft-knit fabrics that can be created using just front and back stitches. This behavior is easy to create, but not easy to anticipate and currently cannot be predicted by the existing computer-aided design software that controls industrial knitting machines. This work identifies the edge deformation behaviors that lead to self-folding in weft knits, and methods to characterize the mechanical forces driving these behaviors with regard to chosen manufacturing parameters. With this data and analysis of the fabric deformations, the self-folding behavior was purposely controlled using calculated scaling factors. Furthermore, theoretical equations were developed to mathematically predict these scaling factors, minimizing the trial and error required to design with self-folding behavior and create textiles with novel engineered properties. By understanding the mechanisms responsible for creating these three-dimensional self-folding textiles, they can then be designed in a programmable manner for use in technical applications.

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