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The Design of Integrated Circuits to Observe Brain Activity

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1 Author(s)
Harrison, R.R. ; Dept. of Electr. & Comput. Eng., Utah Univ., Salt Lake City, UT

The ability to monitor the simultaneous electrical activity of multiple neurons in the brain enables a wide range of scientific and clinical endeavors. Recent efforts to merge miniature multielectrode neural recording arrays with integrated electronics have revealed significant circuit design challenges. Weak neural signals must be amplified and filtered using low-noise circuits placed close to the electrodes themselves, but power dissipation must strictly be limited to prevent tissue damage due to local heating. In modern recording systems with 100 or more electrodes, raw data rates of 15 Mb/s or more are easily produced. Micropower wireless telemetry circuits cannot transmit information at such high rates, so data reduction must be performed in the implanted device. In this paper, we present integrated circuits and design techniques that address the twin problems of neural signal amplification and data reduction for this severely size- and power-limited application.

Published in:

Proceedings of the IEEE  (Volume:96 ,  Issue: 7 )