Nanodevice Arrays for Peripheral Nerve Fascicle Activation Using Ultrasound Energy-harvesting

Michael Donohoe, Brendan Jennings, Josep Miquel Jornet, Sasitharan Balasubramaniam

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

12 Citations (Scopus)


We propose the use of wireless, energy harvesting, implanted nanodevice arrays with electrodes for selective stimulation of peripheral nerves in the human body. We calculate the input ultrasound energy and harvested power for single fixed-size nanowire-based nanodevices at different tissue depths and compare these with the current and voltage levels required for peripheral neural stimulation. We model the dimensioning of arrays of nanodevices, embedded in biocompatible tissue patches, to meet these neural stimulation requirements. Selectivity of activation of particular nerve bundles requires that the output voltage and current of the array can be varied to increase or decrease penetration into the neural tissue. This variation can be achieved by changing the energized area of the array and/or by decreasing the incident ultrasound power. However, the array must be implanted horizontally relative to the incident ultrasound as any tilting of the nanodevices will reduce the harvested energy. The proposed approach provides a longer-term implant solution for nerve stimulation that allows the patient greater freedom of movement than with embedded tethered electrodes.

Original languageEnglish
Article number7968402
Pages (from-to)919-930
Number of pages12
JournalIEEE Transactions on Nanotechnology
Issue number6
Publication statusPublished - Nov 2017


  • Energy harvesting
  • nanoscale devices
  • nerve stimulation
  • ultrasound


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