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HEGduino: Assembled HEG (WeMos Lolin32)

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Measure real-time brain blood-oxygen levels!

HEGduino is an affordable and accessible biofeedback kit. It uses red/infrared light sensing to determine the changes in the blood-oxygen levels in your brain in real time. Tracking blood-oxygen changes in your brain provides direct insight into your brain activity. HEGduino makes hemoencephalography (HEG) biofeedback easy, affordable, and hackable.

Hemoencephalography and “Brain Pushups”

The “HEG” in HEGduino stands for hemoencephalography, a non-invasive biofeedback method, similar to EEG neurofeedback. HEG detects regional changes in the brain’s energy consumption via changes in blood-oxygen. HEGduino enables you to see in real time how your brain blood-oxygen levels respond to your thoughts and actions, resulting in a simple and elegant biofeedback system. You can easily affect and eventually control regional blood flow in your head by focusing, breathing, and relaxing, and watching the response on your screen. With a bit of practice with the biofeedback provided by HEGduino, you can exercise your brain and make it healthier with this type of physical therapy.

It takes less than ten minutes of using the device to learn how to change your brain blood flow directly. Neurons don’t store their energy, so regional brain activity is closely tied to changes in blood-oxygen - the fuel - where healthy blood flow patterns (which carry the oxygen to your cells as needed) are crucial for a high-functioning and growing brain.

Controller Board:

  • ESP32-based control with
    • WeMos Lolin32 V1.0.0 (4 MB flash but more I/O)
  • ADS1115 16-bit 860 sps ADC
  • I/O breakouts for a maximum of:
    • 32 Inputs / Outputs
    • 26x digital pins (3.3 V) - all PWM capable (two occupied by LEDs)
    • 18x analog pin
    • 3x UART
    • 3x SPI

Sensor Board:

  • Flexible circuit board to conform to the shape of your head and headgear
  • 650 nm 50 mA red LED
  • 950 nm 50 mA IR LED
  • OPT101 monolithic photodiode
  • Connected to receiver by CAT3 connectors/wire

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