Christopher McDaid, son of Martin and Bridie McDaid from Killourt, Malin Head, Co. Donegal always had an interest in electronics from an early age, which led to him to enrol at Letterkenny Institute of Technology (LYIT) in September 2004 to pursue his interests.
After completing a course in Electronic & Computer engineering, Chris went on to successfully complete a Bachelor degree (Hons) in Embedded Systems Design in 2009.
Shortly afterwards, Chris enrolled in a three-month internship at the WiSAR Lab to gain industry experience by working on various projects, covering a wide range of industries and technologies.
Through his internship at WiSAR Lab, Chris developed an interest in wireless technology – with particular emphasis in Wireless Sensor Networks (WSNs) and Body Area Networks (BANs), which is used to enable wireless communications between several miniaturised body sensor units.
A Wireless Sensor Network (WSN) consists of distributed and independent sensors which monitor physical or environmental properties and use wireless communications to report their readings and to receive commands.
The monitored properties can include temperature, sound, light, vibration, pressure, motion, pollutants and medical properties such as heart rate, blood pressure and ECG.
Combining these two interests Chris decided to further his knowledge by enrolling for a Master’s degree titled “Wireless Sensed Environment for Body Area Networks” with Dr. Nick Timmons and Dr. Jim Morrison as his supervisors.
The main focus of his research was the low powered wireless body area networks, addressing the communication between on-body devices and wireless nodes placed within the sensed/ controlled environment to facilitate a new level of applications such as health monitoring, sports and other industrial applications.
The focus of the research was aimed at resolving the issues faced in the realisation of this scenario by focusing on deriving the optimal location and density of nodes required in a sensed environment and the optimal transmit power level.
Chris has now completed his research at LYIT and was presented with his Masters of Science by research on 26th October 2012.
Chris is currently working at WiSAR Lab, where he has been involved in the development of a number of innovative medical and industrial prototypes.
As for future plans, Chris is now considering studying for a PhD.