An artificial sensory neuron with visual-haptic fusion

Changjin Wan, Pingqiang Cai, Xintong Guo, Ming Wang, Naoji Matsuhisa, Le Yang, Zhisheng Lv, Yifei Luo, Xian Jun Loh, Xiaodong Chen

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

96 Citations (Scopus)


Human behaviors are extremely sophisticated, relying on the adaptive, plastic and event-driven network of sensory neurons. Such neuronal system analyzes multiple sensory cues efficiently to establish accurate depiction of the environment. Here, we develop a bimodal artificial sensory neuron to implement the sensory fusion processes. Such a bimodal artificial sensory neuron collects optic and pressure information from the photodetector and pressure sensors respectively, transmits the bimodal information through an ionic cable, and integrates them into post-synaptic currents by a synaptic transistor. The sensory neuron can be excited in multiple levels by synchronizing the two sensory cues, which enables the manipulating of skeletal myotubes and a robotic hand. Furthermore, enhanced recognition capability achieved on fused visual/haptic cues is confirmed by simulation of a multi-transparency pattern recognition task. Our biomimetic design has the potential to advance technologies in cyborg and neuromorphic systems by endowing them with supramodal perceptual capabilities.

Original languageEnglish
Article number4602
JournalNature communications
Issue number1
Publication statusPublished - 2020 Dec 1

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Chemistry(all)
  • Biochemistry, Genetics and Molecular Biology(all)
  • Physics and Astronomy(all)


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