Noise induced amplification of sub-threshold pulses in multi-thread excitable semiconductor ‘neurons’

A Samardak, Alain Nogaret, N B Janson, A G Balanov, I Farrer, D A Ritchie

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


We report on the transmission of electrical pulses through a semiconductor structure which emulates biological neurons. The ‘neuron’ emits bursts of electrical spikes whose coherence we study as a function of the amplitude and frequency of a sine wave stimulus and noise. Noise is found to enhance the transmission of pulses below the firing threshold of the neuron. We demonstrate stochastic resonance when the power of the output signal passes through a maximum at an optimum noise value. Under appropriate conditions, we observe coherence resonance and stochastic synchronization. Data are quantitatively explained by modelling the FitzHugh–Nagumo equations derived from the electrical equivalent circuit of the soma. We have therefore demonstrated a physically realistic neuron structure that provides first principles feedback on mathematical models and that is well suited to building arborescent networks of pulsing neurons.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)2853-2856
Number of pages4
JournalPhysica E-Low-Dimensional Systems & Nanostructures
Issue number10
Publication statusPublished - Sept 2010
Event18th International Conference on Electronic Properties of Two-Dimensional Systems - Kobe, Japan
Duration: 19 Jul 200924 Jul 2009

Bibliographical note

14th International Conference on Modulated Semiconductor Structures (MSS14).


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