First Steps Towards an Implantable Electromyography (EMG) Sensor Powered and Controlled by Galvanic Coupling

  • Laura Becerra-FajardoEmail author
  • Antoni Ivorra
Conference paper
Part of the IFMBE Proceedings book series (IFMBE, volume 68/3)


In the past it has been proposed to use implanted electromyography (EMG) sensors for myoelectric control. In contrast to surface systems, these implanted sensors provide signals with low cross-talk. To achieve this, miniature implantable devices that acquire and transmit real-time EMG signals are necessary. We have recently in vivo demonstrated electronic implants for electrical stimulation which can be safely powered and independently addressed by means of galvanic coupling. Since these implants lack bulky components as coils and batteries, we anticipate it will be possible to accomplish very thin implants to be massively deployed in tissues. We have also shown that these devices can have bidirectional communication. The aim of this work is to demonstrate a circuit architecture for embedding EMG sensing capabilities in our galvanically powered implants. The circuit was simulated using intramuscular EMG signals obtained from an analytical infinite volume conductor model that used a similar implant configuration. The simulations showed that the proposed analog front-end is compatible with the galvanic powering scheme and does not affect the implant’s ability to perform electrical stimulation. The system has a bandwidth of 958 Hz, an amplification gain of 45 dB, and an output-referred noise of 160 µVrms. The proposed embedded EMG sensing capabilities will boost the use of these galvanically powered implants for diagnosis, and closed-loop control.


Galvanic coupling Microsensors Microstimulator 



This project has received funding from the European Research Council (ERC) under the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme (grant agreement No 724244).

Conflict of Interest

The authors declare no conflict of interest.


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Copyright information

© Springer Nature Singapore Pte Ltd. 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.Department of Information and Communication TechnologiesUniversitat Pompeu FabraBarcelonaSpain
  2. 2.Serra Húnter Fellow, Universitat Pompeu FabraBarcelonaSpain

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