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TitleMeasuring brain activity with magnetoresistive sensors integrated in micromachined probe needles
Author(s)Amaral, José
Gaspar, João
Pinto, Vitor
Costa, Tiago
Sousa, Nuno
Cardoso, Susana
Freitas, Paulo
Issue date2013
JournalApplied Physics A: Materials Science and Processing
Abstract(s)An alternative neuroscience tool for magnetic field detection is described in this work, providing both micrometer-scale spatial resolution and high sensitivity to detect the extremely small magnetic fields (nT range) induced by the ionic currents flowing within electrically active neurons. The system combines an array of magnetoresistive sensors incorporated on micro-machined Si probes capable of being inserted within the brain current sources. The Si-etch based micromachining process for neural probes is demonstrated in the manufacture of a probe with 15 magnetoresistive sensors in the tip of each shaft. The probe shafts are formed by double-sided deep reactive ion etching on a double-side polished silicon wafer. The shafts typically have the dimensions 1.2 mm × 40 µm × 300 µm and end in chisel-shaped tips with an incorporated magnetoresistive sensor with dimensions of 30 µm × 2 µm. An accompanying interconnect flexible cable is glued and wirebonded enabling precise and flexible positioning of the probes in the neural tissue. Our analyses showed sharply defined probes and probe tips. The electrical and magnetic behavior of the sensors was verified, and a preliminary test with brain slices were performed.
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Appears in Collections:ICVS - Artigos em Revistas Internacionais com Referee

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