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The authors explore the application of cooperative communications in Ultra-WideBand (UWB) Wireless Body Area Networks (WBANs). Firstly, time-domain UWB channel measurements are presented for a sitting human subject. Important channel parameters such as the pathloss, power variation, Power Delay Profile (PDP), and Effective Received Power (ERP) cross-correlation are extracted and statistically analyzed. Armed with the model preliminaries, an intuitive measure is proposed to quantify the diversity gains in a single-relay, single-hop cooperative WBAN, which is defined as the number of independent paths that can be averaged over to detect symbols. Numerical results demonstrate the potential benefit of applying cooperative techniques in futuristic body-centric networks.
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