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Title: Neural interface methods and apparatus to provide artificial sensory capabilities to a subject

Embodiments of neural interfaces according to the present invention comprise sensor modules for sensing environmental attributes beyond the natural sensory capability of a subject, and communicating the attributes wirelessly to an external (ex-vivo) portable module attached to the subject. The ex-vivo module encodes and communicates the attributes via a transcutaneous inductively coupled link to an internal (in-vivo) module implanted within the subject. The in-vivo module converts the attribute information into electrical neural stimuli that are delivered to a peripheral nerve bundle within the subject, via an implanted electrode. Methods and apparatus according to the invention incorporate implantable batteries to power the in-vivo module allowing for transcutaneous bidirectional communication of low voltage (e.g. on the order of 5 volts) encoded signals as stimuli commands and neural responses, in a robust, low-error rate, communication channel with minimal effects to the subjects' skin.
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Issue Date:
OSTI Identifier:
Sandia Corporation (Albuquerque, NM) SNL-A
Patent Number(s):
Application Number:
Contract Number:
Resource Relation:
Patent File Date: 2008 Jun 11
Research Org:
Sandia National Lab. (SNL-NM), Albuquerque, NM (United States)
Sponsoring Org:
Country of Publication:
United States

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