What is fNIRS and how does it work?

John David Chibuk
Nov 19, 2019 · 1 min read

Blueberry uses a next generation brain sensing technology called function near-infrared spectroscopy, this sensor tech was invented in 1977 and started its first uses for brain sensing in the early 90’s.

The sensor works by using an infrared light and detector with a wavelength that transmit through the skull and refract off the surface of brain tissue to be able to measure oxygenated hemoglobin.

how blood oxygenation changes as measured from a fNIRS sensor

Blueberry is a small sensor accessory which tracks brain activity using an fNIRS sensor. The accessory connects to a companion mobile app. The two work together to provide you feedback to sharpen your cognition while conducting tasks such as reading, writing or in a conversation.

Within the mobile app you get real-time feedback nudges, your session history, insights after a task and reports to help sharpen your understanding of how your mind processes language.

This publication by ISS goes in depth around the history of the sensor for the past 30 years. This article by frontiers in human neuroscience goes into greater detail how fNIRS works and how different HbO (oxygenated hemoglobin) and HbR (deoxygenated hemoglobin) can be measured based on the spectrum monitored by the sensor.

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