Since the late 1990s, implants to treat a number of disease and injury conditions have been developed elsewhere, with varying degrees of success. However, these devices have been limited in terms of performance and lifespan.
Here at Livermore, our researchers wanted to take implant technology to a new level—in particular, by making electrodes smaller and more flexible so that more can be packed in ever-smaller packages, and by developing biocompatible materials that would enable long-term implantation. Our earlier work developing a robust, thin-film electrode array and biocompatible electronics package for the ground-breaking Artificial Retina, have paved the way for our current projects. LLNL has a track record of successfully developing implantable neural technologies for over 10 years.