Published on Fri May 14 2021

Powering electronic implants by high frequency volume conduction: in human validation

Minguillon, J., Tudela-Pi, M., Becerra-Fajardo, L., Perera-Bel, E., del-Ama, A. J., Gil-Agudo, A., Megia-Garcia, A., Garcia-Moreno, A., Ivorra, A.

wireless power transfer (WPT) is frequently used in biomedical electronic implants as an alternative to batteries. WPT methods in use still require integrating bulky parts within the receiver, thus hindering the development of devices implantable by minimally invasive procedures.

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Abstract

Aiming at miniaturization, wireless power transfer (WPT) is frequently used in biomedical electronic implants as an alternative to batteries. However, WPT methods in use still require integrating bulky parts within the receiver, thus hindering the development of devices implantable by minimally invasive procedures, particularly when powers above 1 mW are required in deep locations. In this regard, WPT based on volume conduction of high frequency currents is an advantageous alternative relatively unexplored, and never demonstrated in humans. We describe an experimental study in which ac and dc electric powers in the order of milliwatts are obtained from pairs of needle electrodes (diameter = 0.4 mm, separation = 30 mm) inserted into the arms or lower legs of five healthy participants while innocuous and imperceptible high frequency (6.78 MHz) currents are delivered through two textile electrodes strapped around the considered limb. In addition, we demonstrate a procedure to model WPT based on volume conduction which characterizes coupling between the transmitters and the receivers by means of two-port impedance models which are generated from participants medical images.