Term Paper: Miniature Antennas for Biomedical Applications

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[. . .] The MEMS technology has developed several devices for biomedical applications. The Microfluidics makes it easier the design of networks of channels, chambers and valves to regulate the flow of liquids in amounts as minute as one picoliter. Such systems have few moving parts and necessitate little assembly. They entail the potentiality to miniaturize analytical equipment that applies expensive chemicals and DNA samples. They take the benefit of the physical phenomena like electro-osmosis, dielectro-phoresis and surface interaction effects. It involves generation of a Electrokinetic flow when the electrodes attached to computer driven power supplies are placed in the reservoirs at each end of a channel and activated to produce electrical current via the channel.

Under such circumstances fluids of the suitable kind will move by a process known as electro-osmosis. Typical flow rates inside the channel are about a millimeter per second and the flow rate can be regulated by means of a high degree of precision. The occurrence of Electrophoresis in the microchannels is another electrokinetic phenomenon. This involves the movement of charged molecules or particles in an electric field. The Electrophoresis has its application to move molecules in solution or to separate molecules with very subtle differentiations. The molecular world is connected through the regulation by light. Fascinating quantum behavior comes out of the fact that molecular design is at the scale of wavelength of light, to illustrate, quantum dot lasers that emit light and band gap crystals that enable to switch light.

Arryx fabricates 10000 tweezers which are independently controllable and that can manipulate molecular objects in three dimensions like move, rotate, cut, place etc. All these are from one laser source which passes by means of an adaptive hologram. (Lilliputian Machines Set To Revolutionize RF, Optoelectronics, and Biomedical Applications: MEMS in Biomedical Applications) An ultra low power, high quality and high frequency micro-electro mechanical -- MEMS resonator for wireless communication and signal processing can be designed that has the features of smaller size, lower cost, higher reliability and integrability. This would have the advantages of avoiding the need for nm gap in electrostatic transduction, better power handling capability, and improved impendence which match with electronics, enhanced potentials to reach 10 GHz and above. (Low-Power RF Wireless Power RF Wireless Communication)

Passive telemetry is being adopted in biomedical applications, in that sensing and data acquisition electronics are implanted in animals to assess physiological parameters and transmit the data to the base station. As in tele-identification systems, the power of the sensors and electronics is provided to the implanted unit by radio transmission in the ISM band and got by a small coil on the unit. As a result of the confined physical size of the coil the received power is very low, in our case less than 1mW, for a reading distance of a few meters. Taking into consideration the data acquisition and transmission circuitry with low power consumption is hence extremely significant. As the available power is not adequate for conventional radio transmission, the digital data acquired by the data acquisition unit is transmitted by absorption modulation. (A 0.5mW Passive Telemetry IC for Biomedical Applications)

In other words the reflection index of the implanted coil is differed at the instants of data transmission by shorting the coil that results in a glitch in the reflected waveform visualized by the base unit. The very low power requirement indicates that the implanted unit must be meticulously optimized for low power at both the system level and the circuit level. Particularly, in the way sensors are powered, instrumentation amplifier and filter are implemented, type, speed and resolution of A/D converter along with an effective voltage regulator. The passive telemetry IC includes a "low noise low offset instrumentation amplifier, a low pass notch filter and a 9-bit A/D converter along with on-chip clock generator, elements of the RF-DC converter, band gap reference and supply voltage regulator and the needed regulatory switches and logic for powering the sensor and modulating the reflection index." (A 0.5mW Passive Telemetry IC for Biomedical Applications)

The data acquisition part reads the sensor output and helps it in converting into a 9-bit digital signal. One bit per system clock cycle is transmitted to the base unit by shorting part of the RF-DC converter. The base unit clock is phase-locked to the clock of the implanted IC, with the assistance of a synchronization pulse prior to transmitting each sequence of 9 bit data. The integrated circuit is achieved in a 2?m 40V BiCMOS technology primarily to take the benefits of the 12V zener diodes as protection devices at the input of the voltage regulator. The IC is designed for the purpose of interfainge one of the sensors which is known as magneto-resistive sensor bridge for blood pressure measurement and the bridge resistance is 1.7k? (A 0.5mW Passive Telemetry IC for Biomedical Applications)

Nano-electromechanical systems entail the benefits of small size, lower cost, lower consumption of power, low mass, higher reliability and lower maintenance costs on both the system along with the component levels. Mechanical machines have been devised and fabricated those are integrated with microelectronics at the micron scale. New device concepts incorporate but are not confined to the "integration of micro-optics components, miniature signal processing devices, biomedical/genome processing devices, miniature electromechanical wireless components, miniature opto-electromechanical devices, miniature biosensors and environmental sensors and microfluidic devices." (Creatative ideas and exciting applications with challenging scientific breakthroughs) At a miniature scale, the prospective applications of Carbon Nanotubes -- CNT for biomedical instruments are infinite. CNT features unique properties that incorporate very high mechanical strength, high thermal conductivity, effective chemical and thermal CNT/nanotechnology research thrust concentrates on developing novel designs and fabrication concepts based on CNT/nano technology for next generation devices. (Creatative ideas and exciting applications with challenging scientific breakthroughs)

There is a growing inclination towards development of ultra-miniature and low-power sensor Microsystems for application in medical diagnostics, environmental monitoring and other industrial applications. The ultra-miniature sensor micro system is required to contain a large diversity of complex electronics equipments, inclusive of "sensor interfaces, signal conditioning, a microprocessor core, digital signal processing and wireless transmission technology." A system on-chip technology caters to the design and implementation methodology that entails low cost and low form factor and low power consumption that facilitates rapid design of many intellectual property blocks. The system leads to development of a multifunction micro system associated with micro-electro mechanics, laboratory-on-a-chip, micro-fludics and biochemical sensor technology. The sensor micro-system consists of an application specific integrated circuit with sensor interfaces analogue and digital system, a radio uplink to a base station and power source. The micro-system has therefore a simplex communication link to a base station that can manage data from various capsules. The figure given here depicts function blocks of the prevailing prototypical micro-system. (An Integrated Sensor Micro-system for Industrial and Biomedical Applications)

The capability of measuring physiological parameters is considered a crucial element in the sphere of effective medical diagnosis and treatment. The correct measurement of biological values like pulse rate, respiration, blood oxygenation and glucose levels are resorted to by the physicians to accurately diagnose and detect most of the illnesses and conditions. Such quantified values are normally applied in the course of treatment sometimes to assess the conditions of the patients or to guide a practitioner's hands. The sensors have since long been applied in respect of quantifying and monitoring a broad range of physiologic parameters. All the sensors have the same primary functions of converting one type of measurable quantity into a varied but equally quantifiable value, normally an electrical signal. Even though the basic function continues to be the same, the technologies applied to perform that function differs greatly. The prospects of sensor technology are much dependent upon the present development in miniaturization and micro-arrays. Development of 'smart devices' and intuitive systems for patient treatment are also dependent upon the progress being attained in the field of sensor technology. The micro-fabrication processes of non-silicon, non-traditional materials need to be developed or improved based on silicon-based processes. It is worth emphasizing the significance of adopting array for detection is desirable for biomedical applications. (Sensor Advances Spur New Diagnostic, Therapeutic Tools)

Biotelemetry indicates a remote method of quantifying the biologic information through cable, mechanical means or wireless. Normally it represent transmission by radio wave ever though it involves applicability of every portion of the electromagnetic spectrum. Till now the activities are to transmit the data from units external to the body using implanted or external sensors. With the advancement of technology it has become possible to devise the integrated circuit techniques and improved packaging and construction methods, systems are being developed that may be completely implanted within the body or swallowed. By means of biotelemetry growing cases accurate measurements are being made in animals and man without confinements from encumbering wires or interference with physiologic function. The recordings have been attained in man while at work, performing normal… [END OF PREVIEW]

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