At the intersection of engineering, medicine and the physical and natural sciences, Bioengineering at the ACT aims at exploiting new developments in neurosciences, molecular biology, biochemistry, microbiology, and as well as sensing, electronics, and imaging, to encompass any situation where technology must interface with a living system.
This last point is the common thread of all the projects that are performed under this research area. The interface between technology and biological matter can take diverse forms and overlaps with other research areas, making bioengineering at the ACT one of the most multidisciplanry area to work in.
Sleep Oscillations in Space29 Aug 2019
Sleep Oscillations in Space29 Aug 2019 In this study we investigate sleep spindles and slow waves, two hallmark oscillations of non-REM sleep stages 2 and 3, for the first time in astronauts during space shuttle missions.
Inducing Sleep Spindles with Auditory Closed-Loop Stimulation15 Dec 2017 We investigate auditory stimulation as a method to induce a brain oscillation that has been hypothesized to have a sleep-protective function. This might be an effective countermeasure for observed sleep disturbances in space.
Local sleep episodes during wakefulness 01 Sep 2017
Local sleep episodes during wakefulness 01 Sep 2017 Experimental evidence indicates that astronauts tend to experience sleep deficiency on board of the international space station (ISS), at least until their circadian clock is realigned with the new environment. The aim of our project is to understand how sleep deficiency reported by most astronauts in space impacts local sleep episodes.
Assessment of physical exercise benefits on brain health for long-duration spaceflights01 Apr 2015 Poor sleep on the ISS remains one of the major factors, which affects negatively the performance and psychological resilience of astronauts. A fascinating prospect is that some types of exercise could compensate for the lack of consolidated sleep during long-duration space missions enabling the preservation of optimal brain functioning.
Hibernation01 Feb 2014
Hibernation01 Feb 2014 Within its mandate the ESA Future Technology Advisory Panel has identified the controlled use of torpor & hibernation as a game-changing technology for human spaceflight. It is conceivable that lowering the metabolic rate of astronauts would not only lead to reduced consumption of air, water and food supplies, but it might also lead to a lower s...
Innovative Radiation Shielding Technologies01 Feb 2014
Innovative Radiation Shielding Technologies01 Feb 2014 Space radiation is considered one of the major health problems and thus potentially limiting factors for long-duration human spaceflight together with isolation and microgravity-induced physiological changes.
Curiosity Cloning - Neural Modelling for Image Analysis24 Apr 2013 Is it possible to detect the scientific curiosity from human brain activity? If so, can we then teach to a computer to exhibit a similar behaviour?
Brain Machine Interfaces24 Apr 2008
Brain Machine Interfaces24 Apr 2008 Operating machines to perform complex tasks is a common approach in everyday's life. In zero gravity conditions usually even simple tasks can become quite difficult. A machine that reads astronauts' thoughts and puts them into practice would facilitates complex operations in space.
Liquid Ventilation and Water Immersion24 Apr 2007
Liquid Ventilation and Water Immersion24 Apr 2007 Is there an example design in nature for the perfect acceleration shield? In effect, there is, and it is the egg. We studied the coupling of water immersion with liquid breathing as a possible approach for the “perfect G suit”.
Cyborg Insect24 Jan 2007
Cyborg Insect24 Jan 2007 Insects perform a number of astonishing tasks like egocentric navigation and decision taking. In this project we aim at exploiting insect intelligence via integration of real brain in a control architecture.