Brain-computer interfaces are getting taken to the next level.
A group of experts just published a paper in Nature Nanotechnology on their development of a "neural lace." This ultra-fine mesh merges into the brain to create a seamless brain-computer interface.
Why would you want that?
Well, for many potential reasons.
The technology could be used for monitoring brain activity, delivering treatments, connecting to the internet of things, and enhancing brain capabilities.
Sounds powerful. But what about installation?
It sounds crazy, but the device can be injected with a needle.
Plus, the mesh grows with your brain as it changes over time.
They've already tested it on mice - and the mouse brain cells grew around it.
The researchers hope to test it on humans as soon as possible - realistically, that’s not anytime soon. When they do, it could mark the beginning of a new epoch for humankind.
"Seamless and minimally invasive three-dimensional interpenetration of electronics within artificial or natural structures could allow for continuous monitoring and manipulation of their properties. Flexible electronics provide a means for conforming electronics to non-planar surfaces, yet targeted delivery of flexible electronics to internal regions remains difficult. Here, we overcome this challenge by demonstrating the syringe injection (and subsequent unfolding) of sub-micrometre-thick, centimetre-scale macroporous mesh electronics through needles with a diameter as small as 100 μm. Our results show that electronic components can be injected into man-made and biological cavities, as well as dense gels and tissue, with >90% device yield. We demonstrate several applications of syringe-injectable electronics as a general approach for interpenetrating flexible electronics with three-dimensional structures, including (1) monitoring internal mechanical strains in polymer cavities, (2) tight integration and low chronic immunoreactivity with several distinct regions of the brain, and (3) in vivo multiplexed neural recording. Moreover, syringe injection enables the delivery of flexible electronics through a rigid shell, the delivery of large-volume flexible electronics that can fill internal cavities, and co-injection of electronics with other materials into host structures, opening up unique applications for flexible electronics."