Fitness trackers have become some of the more popular types of wearable technology in recent years, but engineers at the University of California, Berkeley
want to take the concept one step further by developing minuscule, wireless sensors to monitor a person’s internal health.
These devices would be approximately the same size as a grain of dust and would be implanted into a person’s body, where they would provide real-time monitoring of organs, muscles, and/or nerves
, the researchers explained.
Furthermore, the sensors don't use batteries
and could be used to stimulate nerves and muscles, thus providing a potential new way to treat disorders such as epilepsy
or to activate a person’s immune system
. The devices, which have already been implanted in the muscles and peripheral nerves of rats, use ultrasound
both as a source of power
and as a way to read
the collected data.
The implant will allow for real-time monitoring of nerve or muscle activity anywhere in the body.
Dubbed “neural dust,” the sensors have already been reduced down to a one-millimeter cube and contain a piezoelectric crystal. The crystal converts ultrasound vibrations emanating from outside a person’s body into electricity, which is used to power a tiny transistor on the device which is in direct contact with a nerve or muscle fiber, the study authors explained!
source - www.redorbit.com