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Physiology

Tech Tip: Use Digital Filtering to Get Better EKGs

Graph of a smooth EKG trace

Using a digital filter to collect EKG data

EKG and EMG Traces Just Got Smoother

John Melville, our Biology Staff Scientist, has created a set of files for Logger Pro and LabQuest App that use digital filtering to improve EKG and EMG traces when using our EKG Sensor. Logger Pro 3.8.6 and LabQuest App 2.2 both offer calculated columns that can be used to filter sensor data. Digital filtering is also referred to as signal processing and is a common tool that many biomedical engineers use to improve signal quality of physiological data.

In Logger Pro, the new files that utilize digital filtering can be found in the EKG Sensor folder, which is located inside the Probes & Sensors folder. You will find a low-pass filter file for reducing distracting, rapid variations in signals, a high-pass filter file to reduce the effect of a varying baseline on signals, and a time-decay filter file that applies a simple adjustable time constant to the data, smoothing out rapid fluctuations while preserving long-term trends. The parameters of each filter can be adjusted using arrows in the parameter control, which is found just below the digital meter. These filter types can be used to improve the signal quality of EMGs and EKGs. An example EKG trace using the low-pass filter file is shown above. Similar files for use on LabQuest can be downloaded below.

Download similar files for use on LabQuest

For more information on how to apply or use digital filters in Logger Pro or LabQuest App, contact John Melville at physiology@vernier.com. You can also watch a video demonstration of how to use digital filtering.

Celebrating Brain Awareness Week (March 11-17th)

Ox Motor Neuron - John Melville
Ox Motor Neuron – Dr. John Melville

Now that neuroscience is a topic covered in one of the “big ideas” in the new AP Biology curriculum, many teachers have been asking how Vernier sensors can be used to teach concepts related to neuroscience.

For more information about Brain Awareness Week, visit the Society For Neuroscience website.

Free, downloadable neurology slide images are available to introduce Brain Awareness Week to your class. Thanks to Dr. John Melville for the images. Download the slides

Activities related to neuroscience are listed below:

Innovative Uses

STEM Extensions

Human Physiology with Vernier

Advanced Biology with Vernier

Biology with Vernier

Investigating Biology through Inquiry

Video Analysis and Muscle Physiology

Our biology staff scientist, John Melville, has been working with our new LabQuest Mini and has found a way to integrate video analysis into a simple muscle physiology experiment. EKG sensors are attached to the bicep and forearm muscles to record muscle activity. A Low-g Accelerometer is then attached to the wrist to measure joint angle. The video capture feature in Logger Pro is then used to synchronize video from a DV camera and the physiological data from the LabQuest Mini. The subject is filmed performing a simple bicep curl. Students can then clearly see that muscle activity precedes movement of the arm and that the forearm muscle activity precedes activation of the bicep.

Continue reading Video Analysis and Muscle Physiology

LabQuest Earns Five-Star Review

The Vernier LabQuest just received a wonderful review in MultiMedia & Internet@Schools, an educational publication. The review gave the LabQuest a 5-Star rating (out of 5) with the following grades:

  • Installation: A
  • Content/Features: A
  • East of Use: A
  • Product Support: A+

“Students will enjoy using LabQuest…. I was impressed by the rugged construction. This is definitely a tool that will last, which makes it an excellent buy—especially with today’s tight funding…. I have no doubt that LabQuest is going to get plenty of use in my classroom. I would highly recommend it for every classroom that is serious about engaging students in meaningful scientific investigations.”

Multimedia & Internet @ Schools
Sally Finley
Country Hills Elementary School
Coral Springs, Florida

Read the full review »
Learn more about the Vernier LabQuest »

Redesigned O2 Gas Sensor

The O2 Gas Sensor measures oxygen concentration in air, and with its wide measurement range, the O2 Gas Sensor can also be used to monitor oxygen concentration during human respiration.

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Redesigned O<sub>2</sub> Gas Sensor

Redesigned CO2 Gas Sensor

Perfect for everything from the respiration of peas to the respiration of humans. Our new CO2 Gas Sensor now has two ranges: 0-10,000 ppm for plant respiration and photosynthesis, and a high range of 0-100,000 ppm for human respiration.

Redesigned CO<sub>2</sub> Gas Sensor

Vernier LabQuest

Vernier announces breakthrough data-collection technology for science education—the Vernier LabQuest.

LabQuest works as a stand-alone device or as a computer interface, providing the versatility to excel in the classroom or in the field.

The Vernier LabQuest includes built-in software for data collection, graphing, and analysis, and on-board applications such as a periodic table and stopwatch. Use the powerful and intuitive software from the vivid color touch-screen—all packed in a rugged and water-resistant exterior.

The freedom to inquire. The technology to excel. The Vernier LabQuest.

Take the LabQuest product tour »

Vernier LabQuest

Human Physiology with Vernier

Our new and highly anticipated lab book, Human Physiology with Vernier, contains 24 human physiology experiments designed to encourage students to think about the physiology of various human organ systems. These activities involve using Vernier sensors such as the Spirometer and Hand Dynamometer to measure the activity of the upper respiratory tract, the lungs, the heart, the nervous system, and the musculoskeletal system.

Read more »

Human Physiology with Vernier

Spirometer

Our new Spirometer is ideal for monitoring inspiratory and expiratory air flow and for making lung volume measurements.

Read more »

Spirometer

Hand-Grip Heart Rate Monitor

Use the Hand-Grip Heart Rate Monitor to measure heart rate at rest and during activity.

Read more »

Hand-Grip Heart Rate Monitor
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