Design of a low-power interface circuitry for a vestibular prosthesis system
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The human vestibular system is responsible for maintaining balance and orientation, and stabilizing gaze during head motion. Head motion is sensed by vestibular sensors and encoded via the firing rate of vestibular neurons. Vestibular disorders can result in dizziness, imbalance, and disequilibrium. Currently there are no therapeutic options for individuals suffering from bilateral vestibular dysfunction. A potential solution is a vestibular prosthesis (VP). This device serves to replace peripheral vestibular organs by sensing angular motion, detected by semicircular canals (SCCs), and linear head motion, detected by the otolith organs, and selectively stimulating the corresponding vestibular afferents. An ideal VP will not only mimic the patient-dependent vestibular neural dynamics, but also consume low power. In this study, three energy-efficient ways to implement the motion encoding function required in a vestibular prosthesis are presented. Both analog and digital signal processing techniques to implement the vestibular signal processing functions are investigated.