High Tech Wireless System Now Can Power Devices Inside Your Body
High Tech: Wireless Device A Major Advancement
The new wireless device is the size of a grain of rice. With no batteries, researchers believe it can be made even smaller.
For example, in the brain, the implant can be deeply embedded and can directly deliver electric current to treat Parkinson’s disease and epilepsy.
Currently, pacemaker devices are implanted under the skin and direct targeting is difficult. The current implants work on batteries which take up a lot of space and have a limited life span.
One limitation of radio frequency waves, until now, is that it dissipates as it passes through the body and therefore can not deliver enough power. The MIT scientists solved this problem by developing a system that uses an array of antennas that emit radio waves of slightly different frequencies.
As the radio waves travel, they overlap and combine in different ways. At certain points, where the high points of the radio waves overlap, they can provide enough energy to power the implanted sensor.
With the new system, it is not necessary to target the exact location as power is transmitted over a large area.
This also allows for powering several implants at the same time. Implants then can stimulate a release of a drug, a burst of electricity, or a pulse of light. Hence, various issues could be accurately and directly treated at the same time.
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