Published online by Cambridge University Press: 12 March 2014
New wireless wearable monitoring systems integrated in professional garments require a high degree of reliability and autonomy. Active textile antenna systems may serve as platforms for body-centric sensing, localisation, and wireless communication systems, in the meanwhile being comfortable and invisible to the wearer. We present a new dedicated comprehensive design paradigm and combine this with adapted signal-processing techniques that greatly enhance the robustness and the autonomy of these systems. On the one hand, the large amount of real estate available in professional rescue worker garments may be exploited to deploy multiple textile antennas. On the other hand, the size of each radiator may be designed large enough to ensure high radiation efficiency when deployed on the body. This antenna area is then reused by placing active electronics directly underneath and energy harvesters directly on top of the antenna patch. We illustrate this design paradigm by means of recent textile antenna prototypes integrated in professional garments, providing sensing, positioning, and communication capabilities. In particular, a novel wearable active Galileo E1-band antenna is presented and fully characterized, including noise figure, and linearity performance.