Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience (BENS)

Andre van Schaik

The Biomedical Engineering and Neuroscience (BENS) Research Program is an interdisciplinary research concentration in the MARCS Institute for Brain, Behaviour and Development at Western Sydney University with members drawn from the School of Computing, Engineering & Mathematics, the School of Medicine, and the School of Science and Health. BENS' research includes the following areas:

  • Reverse engineering the brain
    The brain creates a coherent interpretation of the external world based on input from its senses. Yet data from the senses are unreliable and confused. How does the brain determine what is out there in the world around it? BENS will conduct neurophysiological and psychophysical investigations combined with theoretical, computational and electronic modelling studies to discover how the brain achieves this. The outcomes of this research will then be applied to create electronics sensors with built in brains.
  • Neuromorphic Engineering and Intelligent Sensors
    Neuromorphic Engineering is a subfield of Electrical Engineering that aims to apply knowledge of how signals are processed in the brain to build electronic signal processing systems that vastly outperform current digital signal processing systems. Current 'smart' sensors are generally sensors with a built-in computer. What BENS aims to develop are smart sensors with a built-in brain.
  • Biomedical engineering and bioinstrumentation
    We are developing several new devices to monitor biological signals for applications such as ECG and EEG, as well as an advanced system for Electrical Impedance Tomography and Spectroscopy. We are also developing an implantable device to aid the repair of severed nerves.

One of the most satisfying aspects of doing research at BENS is the interdisciplinary nature of our research and staff. We are currently looking for several postgraduate students. Send us an email if you are interested. Professor AndrĂ© van Schaik