What is meant by Personal Area Network?

A personal area network involves the interconnection of information technology tools and devices within close range of an individual usually within a 10 meters range (Ignas & Heemstra, 2009). This wireless technology is gaining momentum and is expected to replace most of the technology employed today. People can also interconnect PAN to the internet and other networks without wires (Wilfred & Rajan, 2010). PAN has numerous applications today including in the health, business and security sectors.

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First, in business, the linkup technology can be employed to enhance the sharing of information people. The technology involves people wearing devices that are the size of a business card or less on their bodies mostly the hands (Ignas & Heemstra, 2009). The devices functioning as receivers and transmitters allow people to exchange information through intra-body contact including shaking hands. The technology is such that an electric field transmits tiny currents, referred to as Pico amps, through the bodies of the persons when they shake hands (Welch et al. 2007). The electric circuit is completed by the handshake, and the data of every person is transferred to the other’s device.

Secondly, in the health sector, PAN is employed as biomedical monitoring systems. The devices are attached on the body in an effort to increase freedom for long term patients. The body sensors and receivers form the intelligent band aids that monitor and report on the patient’s vital functions. The data is transmitted through the body within the PAN sensor nodes (Wilfred & Rajan, 2010). A single node is set to act as the central monitoring node. This node is connected to the hospital’s remote monitoring infrastructure via a wireless link such as blue tooth. The infrastructure records the information in the patients’ records for doctors to base their intervention procedures.

Thirdly, in the security sector, a person’s identity can be transferred to a sensor on the door or wall before he is granted access into the premises. An electronic current is completed when the person places his hand on the door sensor, which facilitates the transmission of data from the person’s gadget to the security sensor that verifies the information then grants or denies access (Welch et al, 2007). As a result, access will only be granted to the person whose identity is recognized by the security sensor.

The PAN applications can be tailor made to fit the requirements of the users in the market place; that is, based on the application under consideration and project requirements (Ignas & Heemstra, 2009). Moreover, the devices can be developed using proprietary wireless technology to make them more adaptable and robust. Thus, the distribution of PAN technology should not be general in nature, but based on the needs and expectations of the end users.

The future of PAN is bright because electronic gadgets continue to decrease in size, lower their power requirements, and less expensive more people are expected to adorn their bodies with communication appliances and personal information. Moreover, as technology improves, innovative ideas will emerge to improve the convenience of sharing information while at the same time guaranteeing safety. What is more, the technology will expend as more individuals and organizations try to reduce congestion caused by wires in the workplace. However, the future of PAN depends on the availability of interoperability software to allow gadget from different manufacturers and configuration to share data. Lastly, the technology will enable greater distances and bandwidths, hence increasing the applications and potential platforms in the marketplace.



Ignas, I. & Heemstra, G. (2009). Research issues in ad-hoc distributed personal networking. Journal of Wireless and Personal Communication, 26(3), 149-167.

Welch, R. et al. (2007). The effects of the human body on UWB signal propagation. Journal on Selected Areas in Communications (JSAC), 20(9), 1778-1782.

Wilfred, F. & Rajan, E. (2010). Personal area network for biomedical monitoring systems using human body as a transmission medium. The International Journal of Bio-Science and Bio-Technology, 2(2), 212-19.


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