Institute for Microelectronic Systems (IMS): Prof. Dr.-Ing. Holger Blume
Institute for Information Processing (TNT): Prof. Dr.-Ing. Jörn Ostermann
Institute for Information Processing (TNT): Prof. Dr.-Ing. Bodo Rosenhahn
Institute for Fundamentals of Electrical Engineering and Metrology (GEM): Prof. Dr.-Ing. Stefan Zimmermann
Research Topics: Electronics, Sensors, Image Processing, Computer Vision

Brief description of the AGs
The eNIFE is a research center associated with the NIFE within the Faculty of Electrical Engineering and Computer Science at Leibniz Universität Hannover, which is dedicated to the subject of biomedical engineering from the point of view of electrical engineering and computer science. Various working groups within the eNIFE jointly perform at the LUH site, among other things, the parts of the development work that, e.g. due to the technical requirements, can only be carried out here. At the same time, the NIFE is the key location to combine and complete this development work of the interdisciplinary activities of the working groups, especially in joint laboratory experiments, and to generate new ideas for cooperation. The unique selling point of the NIFE, in the form of the bundled technical and intellectual infrastructure, also offers the various working groups the possibility of knowledge transfer between working groups of the MHH and LUH, as well as collaborations that might never have or would never have arisen. These include research activities in the area of the development of bioreactor systems for bioartificial vascular prostheses, the development of novel processor architectures for digital hearing aids, the conception of novel low-energy hearing aid processors, as well as the development of mobile diagnostic systems for assessing sensorimotor regulation abilities.

Detailed description of the AGs

In the Hearing4all 2.0 cluster of excellence, the Leibniz University of Hanover, the Medical University of Hanover, and the University of Oldenburg are jointly researching ways to improve hearing for the 18 percent of the German population - including more than 50 percent of the over 65s - who suffer from hearing loss that requires treatment. By improving individualized hearing diagnostics and the corresponding provision of personal hearing aids, the scientists at eNIFE AG are researching how to decisively improve the communication situation of those affected - at work, in traffic, or at home. To this end, this interdisciplinary project is developing high-performance processor architectures with optimized power loss for electronic hearing systems such as cochlear implants or hearing aids.

The benefit and acceptance of such hearing aids can only be guaranteed if the complex technical boundary conditions are met. These boundary conditions include miniaturized designs, very short latencies in audio signal processing and, in particular, an extremely limited power loss budget to achieve long battery life. At the same time, modern and powerful algorithms for digital hearing aids require high computing power.

The Smart HeaP project addresses this need for high-performance and extremely low-loss processor architectures for digital hearing aids. For this purpose, an AG es eNIFE designs and implements a fully programmable ASIP (Application Specific Instruction Set Processor) architecture.

By using a design environment, the chip to be developed will be fully programmable in high-level language and thus enable further algorithmic developments.

In the biomedical-technical cooperation project D-Sense DL, one of the eNIFE AGs is developing a mobile diagnosis system for assessing sensorimotor regulation ability.

This system, made up of several inertial sensors and specially developed algorithms, allows various sensorimotor test procedures to be carried out yourself without the need for guidance from a trained tester.

Systems of this kind can be used for self-control in sports medicine or rehabilitation medicine with a small staff.

In the state-funded SmartBiotecs project, work is carried out in cooperation with colleagues from various NIFE AGs on, among other things, sensor technology and the associated electronics for bioreactor systems. The bioreactor systems should make it for example possible to grow bioartificial vascular prostheses from autologous cells in vitro in cooperation with the working group Blume/Scheeper. The success of such complex projects must first be fundamentally researched and depends on many different process steps and parameter settings.

To be able to monitor and adapt this as extensively as possible, and to control it as automatically as possible, the use of various sensors with the underlying signal processing and various actuators is examined. The human cells used require very precise environmental conditions, such as high humidity, which makes the use of many electronic components difficult, which is why another focus is on the encapsulation of commercially available electronics. Both, the conception and the implementation of the necessary hardware and software components are carried out by the eNIFE group.

In the field of sensor technology and measurement technology, new types of physical and chemical sensor principles and measurement systems for the rapid detection of the smallest substance concentrations in liquids and gases (air), mainly for medical, bio, environmental, and safety applications, are investigated. Fundamental scientific questions are examined and application-oriented research projects are carried out in close cooperation with scientific, clinical, and industrial partners. In the area of image processing, projects for image analysis and visualization of raw data from various imaging processes are carried out. The spectrum ranges from the visualization of the finest structures on a cellular level to the analysis of migration movements of endoprostheses.