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MRI brain

Project Overview

  • Use non-invasive optical signals to image the brain to decode brain functions


  • Infrared and near-infrared lights can penetrate biological tissue
  • Hemoglobin(Hb) molecules absorb near-infrared lights differently depending on whether they are oxygenated (oxy-Hb) or deoxygenated (deoxy-Hb)
  • We can shine near-infrared lights into the brain and record the absorption spectra of Hb
  • Brain activation is correlated with oxygen consumption in a localized area
  • We can then use the optical signals from the brain to deduce which part of the brain is activated

Research Objectives

  • Use non-invasive optical imaging to decode movement-related brain signals from motor cortex
  • Use near-infrared signals to deduce oxygen consumption and oxygen delivery to brain regions

Specific Goals

  • Decode oxy- and dexoxy-hemoglobin signals derived from near-infrared optical brain signals
  • Decode the differential changes in oxy-Hb and deoxy-Hb signals correlated with brain functions
  • Decode brain-derived movement signals optically to navigate robotic wheelchair

The Challenge

  • How are changes in oxy-Hb and deoxy-Hb optical signals represent cognitive brain function?
  • How to decode the optical signals from multiple optodes that represent different brain function?
  • How to decode differential changes among multiple optodes to represent cognitive function?

The Solutions