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A high-density 256-channel cap for dry electroencephalography

A high-density 256-channel cap for dry electroencephalography

Patrique Fiedler, Carlos Fonseca, Eko Supriyanto, Frank Zanow, Jens Haueisen
Human Brain Mapping

High-density electroencephalography (HD-EEG) is currently limited to laboratory environments since state-of-the-art electrode caps require skilled staff and extensive preparation. We propose and evaluate a 256-channel cap with dry multipin electrodes for HD-EEG. We describe the designs of the dry electrodes made from polyurethane and coated with Ag/AgCl. We compare in a study with 30 volunteers the novel dry HD-EEG cap to a conventional gel-based cap for electrode-skin impedances, resting state EEG, and visual evoked potentials (VEP). We perform wearing tests with eight electrodes mimicking cap applications on real human and artificial skin. Average impedances below 900 kΩ for 252 out of 256 dry electrodes enables recording with state-of-the-art EEG amplifiers. For the dry EEG cap, we obtained a channel reliability of 84% and a reduction of the preparation time of 69%. After exclusion of an average of 16% (dry) and 3% (gel-based) bad channels, resting state EEG, alpha activity, and pattern reversal VEP can be recorded with less than 5% significant differences in all compared signal characteristics metrics. Volunteers reported wearing comfort of 3.6 ± 1.5 and 4.0 ± 1.8 for the dry and 2.5 ± 1.0 and 3.0 ± 1.1 for the gel-based cap prior and after the EEG recordings, respectively (scale 1–10). Wearing tests indicated that up to 3,200 applications are possible for the dry electrodes. The 256-channel HD-EEG dry electrode cap overcomes the principal limitations of HD-EEG regarding preparation complexity and allows rapid application by not medically trained persons, enabling new use cases for HD-EEG.

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