Brain-implanted device generates images

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The revolutionary retinal prosthesis, the Argus, was developed by Second Sight and works by gathering imagery from a camera that is built into glasses worn by the patient. The imagery is passed to an electrode array that has been implanted into the retina of the patient. These signals from the array travel the optic nerve and enable the patient to “see” a computer-generated visual representation of what is around them.

A newer Argus is currently being tested and this system will restore sight to patients who have a damaged optic nerve. The new system has been named the Orion. It will send electrical signals directly to the visual cortex rather than the retina.

While both devices restore some of the patient’s lost vision, neither of them are a cure for blindness. Patients will only see a flickering black and white image and not a full-color “video” of their surroundings.


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