Neuro engineers at MIT have created the worlds first implantable energy generator which creates electric power through the glucose sugar found in the cerebrospinal liquid thats found in your mind as well as spinal-cord. Theoretically, this particular energy supply might ultimately generate low-power receptors as well as computer systems which decode your minds action in order to interface with prosthetic arms or legs. The glucose-powered fuel-cells are designed from platinum and silicon, utilizing regular semiconductor manufacturing procedures. The platinum acts like a catalyst, stripping electrons through from the glucose, much like how aerobic animal cells (ie human cells) strip electrons through glucose with oxygen and enzymes.
The fuel-cells only produce a hundred microwatts (i. at the. tenths of the milliwatt), but that is a still a remarkably large amount – it is similar to the actual photo voltaic cell on a common calculator.
Scientists hope that one day the output will be sufficient enough to power more complicated computer systems — or maybe interact directly with neurons inside the mind. MIT scientists are creating glucose-powered fuel-cells that are about 64x64mm (2. 5in) or just a couple millimeters.
This particular breakthrough is actually fascinating for 2 major reasons:
a) The fuel-cells are totally synthetic
b) the fuel-cells can be easily created utilizing decades-old chip manufacturing technologies.
Glucose powered cells have been developed in the past, mainly to energy heart pacemakers, however they utilized natural digestive enzymes that need to be replenished. Platinum on the other hand can continue removing electrons through glucose indefinitely. Platinum also offers additional benefits like being biocompatible and our system doesn’t try to reject it. Our Cerebrospinal fluid is nearly completely without white-blood cells. It is simply the glucose-rich liquid which protects your mind as well as spinal column.
This technology breakthrough may very useful in stem cell science and also be ideally applied to power integrated, ultra-low-power devices that are built inside or on top of the human body to enhance certain functions.