A Nanodevice that simulates human memory


In the last work “Tomography of memory engrams in self-organizing nanowire connectomes”, published on the Nature Communications, a team of INRiM and Politecnico di Torino researchers shows that the process of consolidation from short-term to long-term memory of engrams can be emulated also in artificial substrates

To obtain such a result, researchers have exploited connectomes of memristive nanowires that are networks connected at the nanometer scale (the same scale of biological synapses) able to exhibit typical features of neuronal circuits, such as an emergent behavior as well as short-term and long-term plasticity. 

The main novelty of this work is to have experimentally unveiled the hidden dynamics of nanowire connectomes, where external spatiotemporal inputs have been demonstrated to induce both local and reversible changes (the analogue of the working memory in our brain) and long-lasting physicochemical changes (the analogue of long-term memory storage)

This measurement was enabled by a combined experimental and theoretical approach based on electrical resistance tomography, a technique developed in INRiM that enables a quantitative mapping of local and global electrical properties of nanonetworks.