Manufacturing a brain-like chip made of artificially fabricated neurons is one aim of scientists working in the field of artificial intelligence. There have been some attempts to make this happen. Recently, a team comprising researchers from IIT Bombay and IIT Gandhinagar has succeeded in fabricating an artificial neuron. The work is published in the journal Scientific Reports.
This silicon neuron is an analog device that mimics the biological neuron in that it fires a spiky signal when it detects simultaneously occurring inputs from outside. The team tested the neuron by checking whether a network of such neurons can perform select classification tasks. One task it succeeded in was to distinguish between different species of the iris flower – Iris sentosa, Iris virginica and Iris versicolor. The other, more significant, was that it could classify benign and malignant cancers.
The schematic of the neuron is as follows: Two so-called pre-neuron drivers are connected to the external circuit, and these feed into two electronic “synapses.” These synapses convert the voltage spikes into smooth current variations and feed it into the Leaky Integrate and Fire neuron (LIF neuron) as it is named. In the neuron, the inputs from two synapses are added up by means of a capacitor circuit. As is the nature of the capacitor, when the added current reaches a threshold, the capacitor discharges, giving a means of resetting the current value...Read more
Source web page:..The Hindu