Implementing Near Infrared Spectroscopy(NIRS) is a more accessible and affordable method of measuring cerebral blood flow which otherwise would often require MRI machines. This NIRS device still has many obstacles to be addressed, including Motion Artifacts (MA). Motion Artifacts are irregular periods of data that is caused by motion. Movements often cause problematic periods where the probe and the skin are not in full contact rendering certain studies impractical. Devising an algorithm to accurately pinpoint and remove data sets contaminated with Motion Artifacts is an imperative goal which could greatly expedite the introduction of NIRS into practical settings.
Through the PURM program I have had the privilege of working under Dr. Arjun Yodh in the Physics and Astronomy Department. There I have learned two coding languages, MyMatLab and Labview, from no prior knowledge of such. This skill are invaluable for any researches I wish to participate in the future. Along with the coding, I spent a significant time familiarizing myself with the physics theory behind the whole process of the instrument. With a more comprehensive understanding of the instruments I couldn't help but appreciate the intricate design of the whole field. From the very instrumentation to the data collection protocols and to the analysis of said collected data, I was provided with the opportunity to work on my individual project. This experience not only taught me various research and collaboration techniques but more importantly showed me the thrills of devising previously unknown solutions as well as the frustration of seemingly impossible tasks. At other times when I was not working on my separate project, I had the opportunity to assists other team members with their projects. Sometimes I would be the trial subject and apply Capsaicin paste on my forehead. It was quite intriguing to analyze data collected on yourself. All in all, the past 10 weeks was more educational than a year of studying with books and highlighted the value of research for an educational purposes.
I am grateful to continue my research with this team in the upcoming school year and aim to continue my contribution to Bio-Optic Research.