Flexible Low-Modulus Nanofiber-Based TIME Nerve Interfaces

Period of Performance: 04/01/2016 - 01/03/2017


Phase 1 SBIR

Recipient Firm

Luna Innovations, Inc.
301 1st St Suite 200
Roanoke, VA 24011
Firm POC
Principal Investigator


Breakthroughs in the development of neural interface technologies have been prevelent over the last decade, in large part due to the success of DARPA-funded technologies under the Reliable-Neural Interface Technology (RE-NET) program. These advancements have included state-of-the-art prosthetics controlled by neural interfaces as well as implementation of sensitization using interfaced prosthetics. While these treatments continue to improve and have achieved moderate success, existing technologies lack the long-term stability and precision that will be required for clinical translation. The two primary limiting complications with existing neural interface technologies are tissue damage and mechanical failure of the device. The 5-6 order of magnitude discrepancy in elastic modulus leads to a variety of implantation and chronic use issues such as tissue damage, difficult surgical attachment, and relative motion during use. Luna Innovations therefore proposes the development of a unique nanofiber-based material system for implementation with the TIME interface. This exciting material technology is being proposed for use with the TIME interface, but will also be applicable to many other existing neural interface technologies in the future.