Innovation That Matters

Hearing implant | Photo source Pixabay

Ear implant uses lasers to deliver accurate sound

Sport & Fitness

A new creation by Swiss researchers adopts a unique method of hearing assistance, away from the commonly used electrodes.

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Typical cochlear implant use electrodes to deliver sounds accurately to the hearing-impaired wearer. Researchers from the Centre Suisse d’Electronique et Microtechnique (CSEM), a Swiss research and development non-profit, have used the alternative method of laser pulses to create accurate sound depiction in its new prototype hearing implant.

Multiple near-infrared lasers produce the soundwave, and small cavity surface-emitting lasers pulsate light and act with the fluids within the cochlear canals of the ear. This means the liquid inside the cochlea absorbs the infrared light. Drops of liquid within the ear expand in high temperatures, which generates a soundwave inside the ear duct when occurring rapidly. The device is small enough to fit in the palm of a hand, but its creators are still working to finalise its design and shrink its high power consumption.

Technology has a brilliant way of helping those most in need. A glasses add-on that helps the hearing impaired see sound, and a braille literacy tool that helps the visually-impaired learn independently are just two examples of the way innovation can help change and improve lives. How could your company work to help the less able?




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