DIY Electrocardiogram

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Project Description

The DIY Electrocardiogram (ECG) project is an after-school outreach event intended for middle school to high school students and is guided by Marquette University faculty and students. The event walks through the steps necessary to construct and program an electrocardiogram (ECG) machine using an ardunio, heart rate sensor module, and the arduino programming language. This single lead system will allow students to visualize the electrical activity of their heart. Students will take measurements before and after physical activity and will analyze the differences of their ECG. The goal is to gain exposure to fundamental biomedical engineering principles such as, heart physiology, electrical hardware, software design, and biometric data analysis.

Project Files / Links

Manual outlining all necessary information to build and test the ECG. Start here.

Arduino IDE (Optional)
Integrated development environment for the Arduino programming language. This program allows a personal computer to connect and program the Arduino hardware.

Processing IDE
Integrated development environment for the Processing programming language. This is the software used to visualize the data from the hardware and create an ECG graph.

NOTE: Must download version 2.2.1 not version 3. Some syntax must have changed between versions 2 and 3 of the Processing software. If you fix the code to work with version 3 of the Processing software please email Dr. Sam Bechara.

Arduino Code (Codebender)
The custom code that is uploaded to the Arduino via the Codebender IDE. The link will take you to where you can edit and upload code to your arduino all via a web browser!

Processing Code
The custom code that reads the data from the arduino and creates an ECG graph. It is a .pde file and is opened and exectued via the Processing IDE.

Parts List
Interested in doing this on your own or ordering a second one? This list contains all the parts necessary to replicate the project.

Additional Links

Interested in electronics and programming and eager to learn more? Below are some website resources that can help you continue to learn.

Electronics Links
This is a great place to start if you are interested in the world of electronics
This is the supplier for all of the electronics used in the lab. They have fantastic tutorials and excellent customer service.
This is a good set of Arduino lessons to get you started

Programming Links
Learn to code, interactively, for free!
MIT App inventor. Easily learn how to write apps for your android device. The tutorial videos make it really easy to get started!
Codebender is an online, cloud based platform to program the arduino. Great for if you have a chromebook but want to get into the world of Arduinos.

Engineering Hall

Quick links

Contact Us

If you have any questions or comments regarding the Marquette University and Medical College of Wisconsin Department of Biomedical Engineering, we are here to help!
(414) 288-3375 (for Marquette)
(414) 955-8671 (for MCW)

Mailing Address:
Olin Engineering Center
Room 206
1515 W. Wisconsin Avenue
Milwaukee, WI 53233