Laboratory to Develop Battery-Free Implantable Medical Devices


Coin-sized electronic chips with wireless energy supply for rehabilitation and medical applications

IIT Kharagpur has set up a Bioelectronics innovation laboratory to develop battery-free implantable medical devices. These devices are meant for treatment of brain, nerve, muscle or spinal cord disorders that are untreatable by using standard medical practices.

Restore missing neural functions

Bioelectronic devices target to restore missing neural functions while utilising energy efficient engineering systems. Here, the researchers aim to implant coin-sized electronic chips with wireless energy supply. These chips will solve neural connectivity problems which are difficult to solve by standard medical devices.

Standard pacemakers require a surgery in every 5 years to 10 years as they have limited battery life but the new solution depend on wireless power transfer and smart communication schemes. Hence, it is expected that this advancement will enhance the life of implants and reduce the number of surgical interventions

The current line of research targets blindness, limb paralysis, sensory-motor dysfunction, cognition-loss, Parkinson’s tremor, epileptic seizures and memory loss.

Can control diseased organs

These devices will be able to sense bio-signals, can control diseased or affected organs and can also process information to make smart decisions. According to researchers, these devices are going to be affordable and reliable, if used in medical applications.

Well, the institute is also planning the collaborations with several other institutes and hospitals worldwide. The laboratory will open many career opportunities in its production and marketing. If implemented wisely, then it will also create an international supply base for medical devices giants like Medtronic, Boston Scientific, Advanced Bionic, Second Sight and Saint Judes Medical.

The institute is also looking forward to technology licensing and commercialisation of bioelectronic devices that are being developed in a laboratory.