Year of Publication


Degree Name

Master of Science in Electrical Engineering (MSEE)

Document Type

Master's Thesis




Electrical and Computer Engineering

First Advisor

Dr. Himanshu Thapliyal


The rise of internet connected devices has enabled the home with a vast amount of enhancements to make life more convenient. These internet connected devices can be used to form a community of devices known as the internet of things (IoT). There is great value in IoT devices to promote healthy independent living for older adults.

Fall-related injuries has been one of the leading causes of death in older adults. For example, every year more than a third of people over 65 in the U.S. experience a fall, of which up to 30 percent result in moderate to severe injury. Therefore, this thesis proposes an IoT-based fall detection system for smart home environments that not only to send out alerts, but also launches interaction models, such as voice assistance and camera monitoring. Such connectivity could allow older adults to interact with the system without concern of a learning curve. The proposed IoT-based fall detection system will enable family and caregivers to be immediately notified of the event and remotely monitor the individual. Integrated within a smart home environment, the proposed IoT-based fall detection system can improve the quality of life among older adults.

Along with the physical concerns of health, psychological stress is also a great concern among older adults. Stress has been linked to emotional and physical conditions such as depression, anxiety, heart attacks, stroke, etc. Increased susceptibility to stress may accelerate cognitive decline resulting in conversion of cognitively normal older adults to MCI (Mild Cognitive Impairment), and MCI to dementia. Thus, if stress can be measured, there can be countermeasures put in place to reduce stress and its negative effects on the psychological and physical health of older adults. This thesis presents a framework that can be used to collect and pre-process physiological data for the purpose of validating galvanic skin response (GSR), heart rate (HR), and emotional valence (EV) measurements against the cortisol and self-reporting benchmarks for stress detection. The results of this framework can be used for feature extraction to feed into a regression model for validating each combination of physiological measurement. Also, the potential of this framework to automate stress protocols like the Trier Social Stress Test (TSST) could pave the way for an IoT-based platform for automated stress detection and management.

Digital Object Identifier (DOI)