Researchers developing wearable sensors that can detect depression (2019/04/23)

  • 2019-04-23
  • 陳 宜濃

A tech firm has teamed up with a university to develop a sensor system that detects depression. Sensors are placed on the patient’s scalp to detect brainwaves, and the brainwaves are analyzed using AI. In just 90 seconds, the system can produce a report on the health of the brain. Researchers are working to fine-tune the system, which they call an industry first. Once it’s ready for market, it could give doctors a way to identify depression faster. 

The sensors collect signals through the electrode cap, rendering the brainwaves on the screen. After an algorithmic analysis, the results are transmitted to the user interface. In just 90 seconds, it can give a report on the health of the brain.

Weng Cong-bin
IT tech manufacturer
For depression, currently there isn’t any -- there is currently no scientific instrument can aid physicians with their diagnosis. Right now, it could be said that this is the first in the industry.

A major laptop OEM worked with National Taipei University of Technology to harness energy technology and sensors to develop this AI brainwave diagnosis system. With over 300 million people in the world suffering from depression, researchers hope that the apparatus can be rented out to hospitals and clinics as early as 2021 to assist with diagnoses.

Wang Sea-fue
NTUT president
In the future, it could also be applied to Alzheimer’s, dementia and ADHD.

The university president said AI is expected to cut healthcare costs by US$150 billion a year in the U.S by 2026. He said Taiwan is keeping pace with global AI development and is looking ahead to launching this valuable tool for psychological health screening.