Computer Sciences

Synapses as a model: Solid-state memory in neuromorphic circuits

Certain tasks—such as recognizing patterns and language—are performed highly efficiently by a human brain, requiring only about one ten-thousandth of the energy of a conventional, so-called "von Neumann" computer. One ...


Engineers build LEGO-like artificial intelligence chip

Imagine a more sustainable future, where cellphones, smartwatches, and other wearable devices don't have to be shelved or discarded for a newer model. Instead, they could be upgraded with the latest sensors and processors ...

Electronics & Semiconductors

Neuromorphic memory device simulates neurons and synapses

Researchers have reported a nano-sized neuromorphic memory device that emulates neurons and synapses simultaneously in a unit cell, another step toward completing the goal of neuromorphic computing designed to rigorously ...


Developing an ultra-scalable artificial synapse

A research team, led by Assistant Professor Desmond Loke from the Singapore University of Technology and Design (SUTD), has developed a new type of artificial synapse based on two-dimensional (2D) materials for highly scalable ...

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Chemical synapse

Chemical synapses are specialized junctions through which neurons signal to each other and to non-neuronal cells such as those in muscles or glands. Chemical synapses allow neurons to form circuits within the central nervous system. They are crucial to the biological computations that underlie perception and thought. They allow the nervous system to connect to and control other systems of the body.

The adult human brain is estimated to contain from 1014 to 5 × 1014 (100-500 trillion) synapses.[citation needed] Each mm3 of cerebral cortex contains roughly a billion of them.

The word "synapse" comes from "synaptein", which Sir Charles Scott Sherrington and colleagues coined from the Greek "syn-" ("together") and "haptein" ("to clasp"). Chemical synapses are not the only type of biological synapse: electrical and immunological synapses also exist. Without a qualifier, however, "synapse" commonly means chemical synapse.

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