Neuromodulation has been proven successful as an alternative to patients who failed to respond to pharmaceutical treatments. However, commercially available peripheral nerve stimulators typically require batteries and wires, limiting the lifespan of the implants and possibly causing complications. Radio frequency (RF) powered neurostimulators have been demonstrated in the past, yet, they are unable to scale below mm scale, thus they are also difficult to implant into the body.

s technical report presents the design of a wirelessly powered and communicated chip for peripheral nerve stimulator using ultrasound instead of RF. Ultrasound has several advantages over RF. The power transmission limit and the path loss are both superior for ultrasound, allowing ultrasonic neurostimulators to scale below mm-scale. In this chip, Ultrasound is used to power, control, and monitor the stimulator while maintaining a small form factor of the chip. The objective of this project is to explore the lower limit of the area of the chip and make improvements over the previous generation.

The chip is fabricated in 65nm process, occupying 500µm × 200µm = 0.1mm2 that is 1/10th of the previous generation.





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