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Implanted electronic system with radio link for recording neural activity of the brain: NEURO-IC

English title Implanted electronic system with radio link for recording neural activity of the brain: NEURO-IC
Applicant Dehollain Catherine
Number 113883
Funding scheme Project funding
Research institution Laboratoire de microsystèmes 4 EPFL - STI - IMM - LMIS4
Institution of higher education EPF Lausanne - EPFL
Main discipline Microelectronics. Optoelectronics
Start/End 01.01.2007 - 31.12.2008
Approved amount 240'868.00
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Keywords (11)

biological-microelectronics interface; microelectronics; RF integrated circuits; automatic regulation of the RF power; repartioning; reconfigurability of integrated microelectronics; Cortical electronic implant; bioelectronic interface; remotely powered implanted integrated circuit; downlink communication; uplink communication

Lay Summary (English)

Lay summary
Neural scientists and medical doctors need increasingly more sophisticated, advanced scientific solutions to monitor and study brain activity as well as to assist patients suffering from degenerative brain diseases or to aid limbs amputees. Electronic systems can fulfill these needs under the conditions that the interface between the outside world and the brain be able to provide reliable and safe communication. The goal is to explore and to design a complete RF link system that allows brain activity to be recorded in vivo. Successful research works have already proven the feasibility of the interface between neurons and microelectronics devices. In this project, the Electronics Laboratory of EPFL (LEG1) and the Microelectronics System of EPFL (LSM) focus their research work on biomedical micro-electronics and signal processing fields with the goal of strengthening collaborative work with the EPFL life science faculty, and provide them original investigation methods. The main challenges are the following at system level, modelization level and building blocks level: (1) Propose a systematic development methodology based on a system-level study and modelization, and a fixed power and data rate Rx/Tx system; (2) Develop an adaptive power limitation system for analog, RF and digital portions of the implanted system. We propose to tackle this issue from a perspective of adapting power transmitted to the implanted system to its actual needs, and reconfiguring/repartitioning the digital system into the optimal power vs. performance trade-off; (3) Develop adaptive system architectures with the ability to trade the algorithmic complexity for limited thermal power dissipation by on-the-fly architectural repartitioning and reconfiguring; (4) Develop solutions to the on-chip hardware integration of large number of cortical readout channels. The need to increase the number of channel requires the development of original techniques to guarantee the integrity of acquired signals, in a noisy environment; (5) Study solutions to long-term power supply of implanted systems, based on wireless transmission of power, and energy scavenging. Original solutions must be provided to the issues related to power and data transmission in the case of safety critical bio-electronic systems, for example considering exploiting energy deployed by human body such as body temperature, movements. The ultimate goal of this project is be to develop a systematic search method in order to determine the best characteristics of the implanted electronic system for a given number of channels and the biological characteristics of the person (e.g. age, gender, health status, etc). This research is expected to allow the implantation of complex systems, exhibiting increased analog, RF and digital performances.
Direct link to Lay Summary Last update: 21.02.2013

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Associated projects

Number Title Start Funding scheme
122082 Implanted electronic system with radio link for recording neural activity of the brain: NEURO-IC ll 01.01.2009 Project funding