Off the Beaten Path: Xandem’s Party Detector

You never know what you’ll find nestled among the home automation and audio/video products that dominate CEDIA Expo 2013. Salt Lake City-based Xandem is demonstrating the Tomographic Motion Detection (TMD), which it describes as a market-ready technology for a variety of applications, including home automation and security.

Created at the University of Utah by Dr. Joey Wilson and Dr. Neal Patwari, TMD is based on “radio wave synergistic sensing” and designed for easy integration into existing systems. Unlike traditional microwave sensors that depend on radio wave reflections, motion sensing is done via communicating nodes in a wireless mesh network that sense disruption in a defined area. And because the wireless networks penetrate through walls, furniture, and other solid materials, TMD sensors can be hidden from view.

The system is even able to quantify motion and detect the difference between a single intruder and a crowd of people, according to Wilson. He sees endless applications for TMD technology, including party detection. “When parents leave their kids at home, they can be notified if a party is occurring.”