Researchers at the Bionic Vision Australia have with their latest research development infused hope in the blind.
An eye for an eye will impart vision this time!
Yesterday, the researchers unveiled a microchip which they believe will power the ‘bionic eye’ revolution. Tapping into the nerve simulation technology, this 5.5 square mm large chip apparently is very adept at its task. Although, the very chip may take a while to come out, the researchers have released two prototypes of the chip which they’ll soon conduct tests on.
This microchip is a part of the first of the prototypes. This prototype called a wide-view neurostimulator device will work with an implanted chip with 98 electrodes to stimulate the retina and enable patients to contrast light from dark. Patients suffering from Retinitis Pigmentosa (an eye disease in which there is damage to the retina) will find this device suitable for their condition. The second prototype called the high-acuity neurostimulator device is a more developed version of the first prototype. This comprises of an implanted chip with over 1,000 electrodes to stimulate the retina and enable patients to view their surroundings in more detail. Patients with age-related macular degeneration (loss of vision due to age) will find this prototype suitable to their condition.
Both these prototypes are currently being worked on. The first prototype will be ready for tests by the next year, while the second prototype can be expected to function only in 2014. However, this indeed spells great hope for those with loss of vision or impaired vision.