There has been a constant trend in electronics for the miniaturization of electronic devices. Scientists around the world have been working on designing wireless, miniaturized implantable medical devices that could monitor physiological conditions. Implantable medical devices are transforming healthcare and improving the quality of human life.
Now, engineers from Columbia University have successfully developed the smallest ever single-chip system which could be implanted with a hypodermic needle.
An implant is as small as a dust mite and visible only under a microscope
This implant is a completely functional electronic circuit with a total volume of less than 0.1 mm3.
The team’s goal is to develop these chips that can be injected into the human body with a hypodermic needle and get information about something they measure locally. So, researchers applied some out-of-the-box thinking for wireless powering and communication via ultrasound.
The implantable chip was fabricated at the Taiwan Semiconductor Manufacturing Company. But, additional process modifications were performed in the Columbia Nano Initiative cleanroom and the City University of New York Advanced Science Research Centre (ASRC) Nanofabrication Facility.
In its present form, this revolutionary chip is limited to body temperature. But in future, these devices could be used to monitor physiological conditions like blood pressure, glucose levels, and respiration function.